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CD Review: JAN SCHIFERL - The Game Horse


The Game Horse
Lovenworth - Red River Valley - Roseville Fair - Game Horse - Wildwood Flower - I Still Miss Someone - Plain and Simple - I'm Blue - Cowboy's Sweetheart - Where Heaven is Close
My theory about 'real' country music, "that there are better musicians, better vocalists, and better songwriters in the upper Midwest of America than anything coming out of Nashville, or any of the other American closed-door music business's doing recordings these days" is totally justifiable with this incredibly new CD by Nebraska rancher Jan Schifert.  The 'ability' of a studio these days is to record these kind of artists with the same efficiency and proficiency any other studio in America can do.  The electronics of the age is everywhere now, not just large expensive studios in large urban areas.  Jan Schifert has that 'just right' voice to make her songs sound like hers.  I mean all the way, from the 'Red River Valley' to 'Game Horse' which is one of her originals.  I'm always keen on good acoustic instruments, it's a direct relationship between the artist and the instrument, and the slide guitar (Dobro) is excellent on this project. That would be Dalton Coffey who also plays mandolin and guitar.  He's also the engineer who mixed and mastered this project, completely well done, with a super good ear.  Joining him is Boyd Bristow on guitar and backup vocals, Don Saxton on steel guitar (outstanding on "I Still Miss Someone" as is Dalton's mandolin), Kenny Putnam on fiddle (another of the traditional country instruments exceedingly well done), Guy Larson on banjo, and Al Slaathaug on bass.  All of the musicians on this project are extremely talented.  Jan Schifert is also a gifted vocalist.  She picked a nice group of songs that take us back to the precious time when country music was 'country' and she adds three very meaningful originals to stake her own claim on the right of expression and pursue a cause with energy, wit, talent, and devotion.  Enjoying the little blessing of life, and the opportunity to praise the Lord Jesus Christ, is one of her many blessings.  I can tell you from personal experience that Kenny Putnam's fiddle on "Cowboy's Sweetheart" is exactly the way Patsy Montana would like it.  Being a very close friend of Patsy's, doing many many shows with her, I also know she would love Jan's vocal version of her great first-female written and recorded million selling song.  The 'yodel' is just right too! What a nice brush with 'real country' entertainment I've had this morning, off it goes to the Rural Roots Music Commission for possible CD of the Year honors.
RECORD REVIEW BY BOB EVERHART - Pres., National Traditional Music Assn.
www.music-savers.com  for Country Music News International

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