We're Serious This Time!
Dead Irish Blues is based on the shared interest of a variety of traditional music styles. Greg Faiers (Lead Vocals, Guitars, Tenor Banjo and song writer), born in Memphis, TN, brings a life-long interest in the blues and jugband music as well as influences from years living in Louisiana to the group. Marty Faiers, born in Texas, raised in Arkansas and having lived in Eastern Tennessee as an adult, brings a life-long interest of string band, swing, and bluegrass to the group. Marty has won several awards at Fiddler's Conventions (1st place bluegrass fiddle at Galax Old TIme Fiddler's Convention, 1st place twin fiddle at Untion Grove Fiddler's Convention and 1st place bluegrass fiddle/best all around bluegrass musician at the Maury River (VA) Fiddler's Convention). Both Greg and Marty share an interest in Celtic music. These wide-ranging interests/influences are well documented on 'We're Serious This Time.' Greg and Marty are joined on this recording by Pennsylvania band mates Ed Hritz (whistle and vocals on 'The Derelict) and Wayne MacEwan (Bodhran/Spoons and lead vocal on 'Black Lung.' Herman Snell, of the Jackson (MS) Free Press probably best described DIB when he wrote 'you can't find a more eclectic melting pot of traditional music anywhere.' Alexandyr Kent (Shreveport Times) once wrote 'Greg is a witty singer and fiery guitar player, and Marty is a champion fiddler. Whatever style of folk music they play - Celtic, blues, jug band, swing, or old-time - these musicians make traditional forms sound vital and warm. Dead Irish Blues celebrates the great songs of old and adds it's own ditties to (the) ever-growing annals of folk history." In regards to live performances, the Fayetteville (AR) Free Weekly referred to DIB as 'a high energy and fun duo" while the Anderson (SC) Independent-Mail wrote that DIB is 'fun and lively, very engaging and entertaining." CD reviewer Bill Ellis (Memphis Commercial Appeal) gave three stars to the 2003 DIB release 'Never Here' and observed that on that CD, DIB exhibits 'a rambling world view that encompasses Scottish laments, polkas, country ballads, old-timey tunes, blues, spirituals, and whatever else happens to hit their folk alliance fancy. ' That same expanse is found on 'We're Serious This Time.' While songs of various derivation are scattered throughout the CD, there are some levels of continuity. There are pirate songs (The Derelict and Smith of Bristol which are paired on tracks 4-5), old string band songs (My Ozark Mountain Home and Likes Likker Better Than Me, paired on tracks 9-10), and Celtic songs (Butterfly, Calliope House/Biddy of Sligo, Paddy Works on the Railway and The Parting Glass). Several originals are sprinkled throughout the CD. El Segundo (a song about trying to determine where to move to), If I Had a Monkey (musically inspired by a visit to Galax Old Time Fiddlers Convention, but with lyrics inspired from elsewhere), and When the Rapture Comes (a song ruminating for years, but inspiration for completion took place in May of 2011). The instrumental original 'Concrete Builds Better Roads' was inspired by an old concrete company sign in downtown Memphis which made that claim. Multiple trips down I-55 and I-40 in and out of Memphis, however, made that claim suspect. Drunken Lady Blues builds off of a Jimmy Rogers vibe and is a logical follow up song to Likes Likker Better Than Me. While not an original, most of the lyrics to 'Tavern on the Moon' were written by Greg Faiers. The original 'I'm Building a ____ on the Moon' (now public domain) by Weldon Rogers is the basis for this tune. The song 'You're Bound to Look Like a Monkey' has been recorded at various times over the years from Milton Brown (1935) to Sid Selvidge (2009). This version (with additional lyrics by Greg Faiers is more of a nod to the Milton Brown version. Fourth Street Messaround was recorded by the Memphis Jug Band and has an interesting and unusual chord sequence which makes it fun to play and to sing over. Lastly, the song 'Black Lung,' written by Jack Shaw (he gave us permission to record the song), is a song Wayne MacEwan would sing acapella at parties, has been a standard DIB song in Pennsylvania performances for years. The CD cover reflects some of the different themes in the CD, which features multiple references to monkeys, the moon, pirates, and drinking. Lastly, we'd like to acknowledge the contribution of 'The Mighty Dibtones' on tracks 1, 4, 5, and 13. The Mighty Dibtones are: Lauren Blue, Ged Corrigan, Dick Cupp, Patty Derrick, George Kirk, Benjamin MacEwan, Dustin MacEwan, Linda MacEwan, Wayne MacEwan and Jeff Rusin.