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Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Alphabet Beats #076: K is for....Alison Krauss and Union Station

K is for....

The last of the K's today and what a great collection of music we have had for this letter! We are not finished yet, there's loads of links to some fine music on today's Alphabet Beats. Enjoy.

Alison Krauss is an American bluegrass-country singer-songwriter and musician. She entered the music industry at an early age, winning local contests by the age of ten and recording for the first time at fourteen. She signed with Rounder Records in 1985 and released her first solo album in 1987. She was invited to join the band with which she still performs, Alison Krauss and Union Station (AKUS), and later released her first album with them as a group in 1989.

She has released fourteen albums, appeared on numerous soundtracks, and helped renew interest in bluegrass music in the United States and around the world. Her soundtrack performances have led to further popularity, including the O Brother, Where Art Thou? soundtrack, an album also credited with raising American interest in bluegrass, and the Cold Mountain soundtrack, which led to her performance at the 2004 Academy Awards (she performed two songs 'Scarlet Tide' and 'You Will Be My Ain True Love').

As of 2012, she has won 27 Grammy Awards from 41 nominations, tying her with Quincy Jones as the most awarded living recipient, second only to the late classical conductor Sir Georg Solti who holds the record for most wins of all time with 31. She is the most awarded singer and the most awarded female artist in Grammy history. At the time of her first, the 1991 Grammy Awards, she was the second youngest winner (currently tied as the ninth youngest). 


One of the things I love about Union Station is that they are all very accomplished musicians and songwriters and outside of performing with Alison, pretty much all of them have either released solo albums and are in-demand session musicians. Ron Block has released a number of albums, here's a link to his fantastic album 'Farway Land'. Jerry Douglas has also released quite a few albums of his own, here's a link to his album 'The Best Kept Secret'. Dan Tyminski has released two albums and here's the latest one (it was a while back now, about time for a new one Dan!) 'Wheels'. He was also the voice of the singing George Clooney in O Brother Where Art Thou? Barry Bale has recorded and performed with artists like Reba McEntire, Patty Loveless, Dolly Parton, Merle Haggard and Vince Gill to name but a few.

Alison of course has appeared on a number of soundtracks, collaborations and has even tried her hand at producing (her first project was the fantastic debut album by Nickel Creek).

Back Row: Jerry Douglas - Dobro, Ron Block - Guitar, Banjo and Vocals, Dan Tyminski - Guitar, Mandolin and Vocals.
Front Row: Alison Krauss - Lead Vocals, Piano, and Fiddle, Barry Bales - Bass and Vocals.

Albums Released as Alison Krauss and Union Station.
1989: Two Highways.
2001: New Favorite.
    2002: Live.
    2004: Lonely Runs Both Ways.
  2011: Paper Airplane.

Albums Released as Alison Krauss (and others).
* Incomplete 

A Selection of Singles and Promo Videos and TV Performances.

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