Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers

Hymns From The Hills – 2011 (Rebel)

Reviewed by Dr. Bobby Jones

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CDs by Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers

Joe Mullins has been involved in bluegrass and the gospel all his life. His father, Paul "Moon" Mullins, was a fiddler and radio broadcaster in Ohio for a quarter century, and this CD was named after his mid-day radio show. The background shows. Mullins and his band render classic bluegrass gospel. The vocals are high and clear and with perfect diction; you can understand every word of the message. The harmonies are spot on, and the instrumental work is unpretentious, but solid right down to the fiddle breaks played with perfect intonation.

Mullins and band cover both old classics like Sweet Hour of Prayer and numbers such as Tim Stafford and Jon Weisberger's Be Jesus to Someone Today, a new tune, which sounds like it has been around since the 50's. Several of the selections are done in memory of artists who have passed on.

This band does fine work on its own, but the addition of guests such as Paul Williams, Ralph Stanley, Doyle Lawson, Larry Sparks, and Rhonda Vincent serves as testimony to the respect for Mullins and the authenticity of his work in true bluegrass gospel.