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'Not Our First Goat Rodeo' is an unqualified 'A' / The Graham Album Review

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The Graham Album Review

It used to be that musicians playing in specific styles tended not to collaborate much. There seemed to be steep walls between, for example, classical music and rock and bluegrass. There were occasional efforts at fusing disparate styles, but they tended to come off as one-off novelties, and not lasting associations. These days, the musical world is much more stylistically diverse, with musicians from what would seem like very different worlds regularly jumping genres – sometimes as an economic necessity – and also collaborating, blending their styles in interesting ways.

This week we have a new album by an excellent example of musicians from rather different worlds creating distinctive original music, basically providing a sequel to a previous collaboration which won a Grammy Award. It's the quartet of classical cello virtuoso Yo-Yo Ma, Nashville fiddler Stuart Duncan, folk, bluegrass and jazz bassist Edgar Meyer, and mandolinist Chris Thile of Nickel Creek and the Punch Brothers, winner of a MacArthur so-called "genius" award and host of the Public Radio show "Live from Here." Their new project is called Not Our First Goat Rodeo, a sequel to their 2011 album Goat Rodeo Sessions, which has become something of a classic. 'Not Our First Goat Rodeo' is an unqualified 'A'

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