Groupe Bluegrass US formé en 1982.
Lonesome River Band have withstood numerous personnel changes to merge as one of
the most highly respected bands in bluegrass. Although rooted in the traditional
sounds of Flatt
& Scruggs and Bill
Monroe, the Lonesome River Band continue to set standards of their own. The
recipients of the SPBGMA award as Vocal Group of 1997, the Lonesome River Band
continue to fuse ultra-tight vocal harmonies with virtuosic musicianship and
The original lineup of the Lonesome River Band was assembled by banjo player-turned-lead vocalist and -rhythm guitarist Tim Austin and featured Steve Thomas on mandolin and fiddle, Rick Williams on banjo, and Jerry McMillan on bass. After attracting attention on the local bluegrass circuit in Virginia, the Lonesome River Band released their debut album, I Guess Heartaches Are in Style This Year, in 1985 on the regional label Shar-Lynn. Their national debut came with a self-titled album, released by Rebel, the following year.
The Lonesome River Band have been evolving at a steady clip since the early-'90s with the arrival of lead vocalist and bass player Ronnie Bowman and banjo ace Sammy Shelor. North Carolina-born Bowman sang gospel music with a family group from age three until his late teens and is equally effective singing traditional bluegrass tunes as he is voicing songs by contemporary singer/songwriters. Shelor, who inherited his love of the banjo from his grandfathers, began to play the five-stringed instrument at age five. Although he learned his early technique from an old-timey clawhammer banjo player Carp Ayers, Shelor's approach to the instrument has been as much influenced by the playing of Earl Scruggs, J.D. Crowe, Ben Eldridge, Allen Shelton, Pete Wernick, and Béla Fleck. Shaping his performance skills with local bluegrass bands in North Carolina and Virginia, Shelor was a founding member of the Virginia Squires in 1983. He remained with the Squires until 1989 when he was joined the Lonesome River Band.
The reorganized Lonesome River Band hit their stride with their first album together, Carrying the Tradition, which debuted at the top slot on the best-selling charts compiled by Bluegrass Unlimited. It remained on the charts for five months before being supplanted by the band's next release, Old Country Town, which remained at the number one position for six months.
In the aftermath of their success, founding member Tim Austin left the Lonesome River Band to devote more time to working in his home recording studio, Doobie Shea. Although he was replaced by Kenny Smith, of Claire Lynch's Front Porch String Band, Austin continued to work with the Lonesome River Band on their albums. The newest member of the Lonesome River Band, Don Rigsby, who sings tenor vocals and plays mandolin, is a veteran of such bands as J.D. Crowe & the New South, the Bluegrass Cardinal, and previously worked with Vern Gosdin. The first album by the reconstructed lineup, One Step Forward, was released in 1996.
Each member of the current Lonesome River Band has recorded memorable solo albums. Bowman, who was named Vocalist of the Year by the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) in 1995, delivered the most successful of the solo albums, Cold Virginia Night, which won the IBMA award as Best Album of the Year in 1997. Bowman followed it with a second solo album, The Man I'm Tryin to Be in 1998. Shelor, who was named the IBMA's Banjo Player of the Year in 1995 and 1998, released Leading Roll in 1997 with guest appearances by Tony Rice, Sam Bush, Jerry Douglas, and Alan O'Bryant of the Nashville Bluegrass Band. Rigsby's solo debut, A Vision, celebrated his religious views and featured a duet with Ralph Stanley. Smith's Studebaker, released in 1997, spotlighted his songwriting talents and featured instrumental and vocal support from the other members of the Lonesome River Band.
The Lonesome River Band were featured on several tracks of John Fogerty's 1997 album Blue Moon Swamp. Their Finding the Way album followed a year later, and in mid-2000 the group returned with Talkin' to Myself. The year 2002 saw the release of Window of Time, another crisp set of expertly rendered picking and singing, followed by Head on into Heartache in 2005. In 2006, the band added Knoxville, Tennessee, Dobro player Matt Leadbetter (son of Dobro player Phil Leadbetter), who appeared on Road with No End, released that year.
The Lonesome River Band signed with Rural Rhythm in 2008, releasing No Turning Back that year. Over the next four years, the band released four albums on Rural Rhythm -- including a three-part anthology called Chronology -- before returning to Mountain Home in 2014 for Turn on a Dime. Coming Back Home to You followed in 2015, with Bridging the Tradition appearing in 2016 and Mayhayley's House hitting the stores in 2017.
Style musical : Bluegrass, Gospel
Years in activity :
|02/2012||CD Rural Rhythm RUR-1101 (US)||Chronology - Volume ONE - Close The Door Lightly When You Go / The Old Man In The Shanty / Laura Jean / The Game Is Over / Mary Ann / I'm Afraid To Love You Anymore / Hobo Blues / Angeline The Baker|
|07/2012||CD Rural Rhythm RUR-1102 (US)||
Chronology - Volume Two - Barely Beat The Daylight In / The Crime I Didn't Do / Sweet Sally Brown / Perfume, Powder And Lead / The Game I Didn't Win / Tears Are Blinding Me / Flat Broke And Lonesome / Dog Gone Shame
|10/2012||CD Rural Rhythm RUR-1103 (US)||Chronology - Volume THREE - Long Gone / Carolyn The Teenaged Queen / Am I A Fool / Whoop And Ride / Money In The Bank / Stray Dogs And Alley Cats / Who Needs You / Harvest Time / Sorry County Blues / Sittin' On Top Of The World|
|1985||LP 12" Shar Lin SL 33-48507 (US)||
I Guess Heartaches Are In Style This Year - I'll Take The Blame / Here We Go Again / I Guess Heartaches Are In Style This Year / It Won't Work This Time / The Circle Is Small / Little Country Sunshine / Roll On To The Sea / Nothing To Live For / What Will It Take / Headin' For Highland / Born Again / As Long As I'm Rockin' With You
|1986||LP 12" Rebel REB 1645 (US)||
The Lonesome River Band - Hello / Them Blues (They Got Me) / Cold Cold Loving / Summer When You First Loved Me / The Last Day / But Will You Love Me Tomorrow / Old Man In The Shanty / Got Leavin' On Her Mind / Mary Ann / Living With My Memories / Big Mon / Christ Is The Way
|1988||LP 12" Rebel REB 1660 (US)||
Saturday Night & Sunday Morning - Kentucky Girl / Close The Door Lightly When You Go / Light At The River / It Won't Be Like Cheating / I Have Found The Way / Lost And Lonesome For You / Lover's Lane / On The Other Side Of Jordan / Daybreak In Dixie / My Lord Keeps Me Satisfied
|1989||CD Rebel REB-CD-1680 (US)||
Looking For Yourself - Looking For Yourself / Afraid To Love You / It Almost Feels Like Love / Rocky Road Blues / Brother John / Laura Jean / If I Could Only Have Your Love / I'd Worship You / Rock And Roll / Amanda Linsong
|01/1994||CD SUGAR HILL SH-CD-3818 (US)||
Old Country Town - Highway Paved With Pain / Old Country Town / Tears Are Blinding Me / Long Gone / (Listen To) The Old Man / Who Needs You / The Game (I Can't Win) / Running Hard On A Broken Heart / She's About Trouble / Solid Rock / I'll Take The Blame / Old Lonesome, Welcome Back
|03/1996||CD SUGAR HILL SH-CD-3848 (US)||
One Step Forward - When You Go Walking / Say I Do / Sorry County Blues / Southern Comfort / Thank God For A Mama / Flat Broke And Lonesome / Carolyn The Teenage Queen / Crossroads / Katy Daley / This Lonesome Song / Crazy Heart / Georgia Mail
|08/1998||CD SUGAR HILL SH-CD-3884 (US)||
Finding The Way - Am I A Fool / Love's Come Over Me / Let It Go / Cardboard Mansion / Perfume, Powder And Lead / Baby Come Home / Another By My Side / Don't Worry 'Bout Daddy / Finding Your Way / Up On The Shelf / Better Days To Come / Sweet Sally Brown / Devil Chased Me Around The Stump
|06/2000||CD SUGAR HILL SUG-CD-3913 (US)||
Talkin' To Myself - Swing That Hammer / Talkin' To Myself / Dog Gone Shame / The Place Where You Can Bury Me (Tenor vocals : Dan Tyminski) / No One Can Love You Dear (The Way I Do) / Mary Ann / Are You Ashamed To Call Me Darlin' / Harvest Time / The Crime I Didn't Do / Willow Garden / Do You Want To Live In Glory / I Won't Be Calling For You
|08/2002||CD Doobie Shea DS-CD-4006 (US)||
Window Of Time - Down The Line / How I Long To Be In The Mountains / Missed It By A Mile / Weary Day / Rounder's Spirit / Stray Dogs And Alley Cats / My Heart Belongs To You / Tune Of A Twenty Dollar Bill / Give The Devil An Inch / Honey I'm Ramblin Away / Don't Go Out Tonight My Darlin / You Are Everything / Tomahawk
|05/2005||CD Mountain Home Music MH10332 (US)||
Head On Into Heartache - Tears In My Tracks / Coming Home To You / Raleigh And Spencer / Take It To The Valley / Legend Of Jonas Willingham / Wasting My Time / Lost And Lonesome For You / The Best Thing That I Had Going / She Changed Her Mind / Gonna Have Myself A Ball / Little Birdie / Summer When You First Loved Me / This Ole' Heart
|07/2006||CD Mountain Home Music 10992 (US)||
The Road With No End - Lonesome Won't Get The Best Of Me / Won't Be Over You / What'd I Give To Be The Wind / You Can't Break My Heart / Whoop And Ride / Hereafter / Brother To The Blues / A Step Away / New Love / She's No Lady / Prisoners Lament / Strangers In Your Eyes / Hillbilly Catfight
|07/2007||CD SUGAR HILL SUG-CD-4033 (US)||
Best Of The Sugar Hill Years - Highway Paved With Pain / Old Country Town / Solid Rock / Who Needs You / When You Go Out Walking / Flat Broke And Lonesome / Carolyn The Teenage Queen / Katy Daley / Sweet Sally Brown / Perfume, Powder And Lead / Baby Come Home / Am I A Fool / Are You Ashamed To Call Me Darlin' / Mary Ann / Harvest Time / Swing That Hammer
|09/2008||CD Rural Rhythm RHY-1040 (US)||
No Turning Back - Them Blues / Like A Train Needs A Track / Dime Store Rings / One Little Teardrop / Wires And Wood / Somebody's Missin' You / I'm Not There Yet / Long Way From Here / We Couldn't Tell / Molly / Darkness Wept / I'd Worship You / Struttin' To Ferrum / Flowers
|07/2010||CD Rural Rhythm RHY-1065 (US)||
Still Learning - Record Time Machine / Goodbye Wheeling / I’m Still Learning / Jack Up The Jail / Telling Me You Love Me Again / Forty Days In The Desert / Any Ole Time / Don’t Cry Blue / As Wild As I Get / High Lonesome / Red Bandana / I’ve Seen The Blues / Pretty Little Girl
|02/2013||CD Rural Rhythm RUR-CD-1095 (US)||
God Didn't Choose Sides - Volume 1 - Civil War True Stories About Real People - The Lonesome River Band / Russell Moore / Marty Raybon - I'm Almost Home (feat : Steve GULLEY) / A Picture Of Three Children / The Legend Of Jennie Wade / Christmas In Savannah (feat : Dale Ann BRADLEY) / Providence Spring (feat : Tim STAFFORD) / Old John Burns (feat : Dwight McCALL / Rickey WASSON) / The Lady In Grey (feat : Ronnie BOWMAN) / Last Day At Vicksburg (feat : Bradley WALKER) / Rebel Hart (feat : Brad GULLEY) / Carrie's Graveyard Book (feat : Carrie HASSLER) / The River Man (feat : Dave ADKINS) / God Didn't Choose Sides / There Is A Fountain (feat : Dale Ann BRADLEY / Vic GRAVES / Don GULLEY / Steve GULLEY / GAP CREEK QUARTET
|2013||CD Rebel REB-CD 1690 (US)||
Carrying The Tradition - Sitting On Top Of The World / I Can't Get You Off My Mind / Heartless Love / Listen To The Word Of God / You Gotta Do What You Gotta Do / The Game Is Over / Cabin Of Love / Money In The Bank / Hobo Blues / Fireball Mail / I'm Coming Back (But I Don't Know When) / Counting The Days / My Sweet Blue-Eyed Darlin'
|10/2014||CD Mountain Home Music MH15632 (US)||
Turn On A Dime - Her Love Won't Turn On A Dime / Gone And Set Me Free / Lila Mae / Don't Shed No Tears / If The Moon Never Sees The Light Of Day / Teardrop Express / Bonnie Brown / Every Head Bowed / Shelly's Winter Love / Hurting With My Broken Heart / A Whole Lot Of Nothing / Holding To The Right Hand / Cumberland Gap
|08/2015||CD Mountain Home Music MH16192 (US)||
Coming Back Home to You - Down the Line (From Window of Time) / Missed It by a Mile (From Window of Time) / Weary Day (From Window of Time) / Tune of a Twenty Dollar Bill (From Window of Time) / Tears in My Tracks (From Head on Into Heartache) / Coming Home to You (From Head on Into Heartache) / Raleigh and Spencer (From Head on Into Heartache) / Little Birdie (From Head on Into Heartache) / Lonesome Won’t Get the Best of Me (From the Road With No End) / Won’t Be Over You (From the Road With No End) / Step Away (From the Road With No End) / A Hillbilly Cat Fight (From the Road With No End) / Hillbilly Cat Fight
|03/2016||CD Mountain Home Music MH16502 (US)||
Bridging The Tradition - Anything To Make Her Mine / Rocking Of The Cradle / Boats Up The River / Rock Bottom / Rose In Paradise / Showing My Age / Old Swinging Bridge / Mirrors Never Lie / Thunder & Lightning / Waiting On My Heart To Break / Runnin' From The Blues / Real People
|06/2017||CD Mountain Home Music MH16852 (US)||
Mayhayley's House - Wrong Road Again / As Lonesome As I Am / Mayhayley's House / Old Coyote Town / Blackbirds And Crows / Ida Red / Diggin' / As The Crow Flies / Lonesome Bone / I Think I'm Gonna Be Alright / It Feels Real Good Goin' Down / Hickory Hollow Times And County News / Fly Around My Pretty Little Miss
|05/2019||CD Mountain Home Music MH17272 (US)||
Outside Looking In - Generosity Killed This Cat / New Ballards Branch / Outside Looking In / If I Had A Cheating Heart / Cassidy's Prayer Book / Little Magnolia / Going With The Flow / Circle Of Lies / Wreck Of My Heart / Your Memory Wins Again / Home Of The Red Fox / Rough And Tumble Heart / Calling Elvis
© Rocky Productions 10/03/2021