Black Music Matters Festival

Alison Krauss

A Hundred Miles or More: A Collection – 2007 (Rounder)

Reviewed by Dawn Pomento

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CDs by Alison Krauss

The liner notes for the new collection of songs by Alison Krauss gives notice that, unlike the last collection ("Now that I've Found You" in 1995), this one showcases Krauss alone, far from Union Station, the band that first brought her into the spotlight. She's been a recognized solo artist for a while now. There's no doubt that Krauss has traveled far from her bluegrass/traditional roots. But for anyone who needs proof of that, this collection is a good argument - she doesn't even play fiddle or viola on most of the songs.

This collection offers five previously unreleased songs, and the rest are songs from albums by other artists, compilations or soundtracks. The most widely known songs are from soundtracks: "Down to the River to Pray" from "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" and "The Scarlet Tide" from "Cold Mountain."

Some longtime fans might miss background vocals on this collection, the kind that Union Station band mates provided. A duet with Brad Paisley - "Whiskey Lullaby" from his 2003 CD "Mud on the Tires" - scratches that itch to hear Krauss' high, pure voice harmonize with a deeper one. But "Missing You" with John Waite misses the mark. It's so true to the original that it's easy to imagine a karaoke screen with the lyrics rolling by. Still, it's one forgivable quirk in a collection most fans will welcome.