REVIEW: LaTresa Smith’s “The Blood and the River” is Rich Musical Depth


LaTresa Smith has a Bluegrass Gospel album out on BoonDog Records: The Blood and the River. The Blood and the River was produced by La Tresa Smith and Randy Smith and engineered by Markus Stadler.

The core band is LaTresa Smith on rhythm guitar and lead vocals; Randy Smith on upright bass; Kyle Wood on backing vocals and mandolin on most songs; and Markus Stadler on backing vocals and banjo on most songs.

Hailing from Tennessee by way of Mississippi, LaTresa Smith has crafted songs for this album that will easily settle in to their rightful place in the bluegrass canon.  The songs are at once unique and immediately familiar.

The title track “The Blood and the River” gathers together guests Rob Ickes on dobro and Ronnie McCoury on mandolin to enrich the musical depth. The song is wonderfully uplifting in a classic bluegrass style.

“Now I Am Redeemed” features deeply moving vocals by guests Dale Ann Bradley, Christian Davis and Steve Gulley. “Where Angels Abide” features Roland White on mandolin, and is a wonderfully complex musical showcase full of lyrical promises.

“Bright Star” is a song about the bright star shining on the manger in a gentle arrangement, with Christian Sedelmyer’s joyful fiddle, and Billy Droze in lovely vocal duet with LaTresa Smith. Pat Flynn’s guitar spices this one up too.  “When I Cross the River” is another standout track, this time with Tim O’Brien’s lively fiddle, Rob Ickes joining back in, in a fast paced extravaganza.

The Blood and the River will draw you in and keep you listening with its easy, joyful style. Find out more here:

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