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Jeff White

The Broken Road – 1999 (Rounder)

Reviewed by Tom Netherland

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CDs by Jeff White

While not well known to the public, Vince Gill and Alison Krauss, certainly know Jeff White as a crack guitarist, sideman and studio musician who can play the fire out of country and bluegrass music.

The album's varied 14 tracks are mainly originals. From the title track to the winsome "Lonesome As It Gets," an interpolative look at love ("The Only Girl") and a genre-expanding "Cliffs By The Sea," White's talent as a vocalist pales somewhat compared with his considerable guitar playing. Bill Monroe's jaunty "Stay Away From Me," kept close to the original, stands out. White's voice, while nothing to brag about, sounds invigorated, more punchy and soulful.

As a sideman White has stood in the shadows of a business that rarely looks beyond the obvious. Here, he steps out, if but for a peek.