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The soul of original bluegrass

When The Earl Brothers gather 'round the microphone to perform, it's with a less-is-more approach. The group stays with the gritty tradition of bluegrass that started in the '40s and '50s. Based in San Francisco, The Earl Brothers features banjo player Robert Earl Davis, guitarist Danny Morris, bassist James Touzel and fiddler Tom Lucas..

They'll perform at 8 p.m. Friday, March 11, at Applegate Lodge, 15100 Highway 238, Applegate.

Chris Hillman, an original member of the American rock band The Byrds, wrote that "The Earl Brothers have got the soul, songs and attitude that brought us all into bluegrass music in the first place. Their songs cry of the mountains, of the people and of the traditions down through the ages. Bluegrass is alive and well."

Alex Leach of WDVX Radio in Knoxville, Tenn., said, "The only thing to say about traditional bluegrass at its best is .... The Earl Brothers. Their modern writing style is combined with traditional vocals and music. They have captured ... the best sound bluegrass can offer."

As soon as The Earl Brothers' music was played on WDVX, it went straight to No. 1 on the station's playlist. The band members hark back to harmonies of the bluegrass duo Carter and Ralph Stanley (The Stanley Brothers) and the lonesome sounds of Bill Monroe, who's been called The Father of Bluegrass.

The Earl Brothers formed about 10 years ago and have received positive responses from an international fan base and critics.

The band's fourth album, self-titled "The Earl Brothers," was released last year. Other recordings include "Moonshine" (2008), "Troubles to Blame" (2006) and "Whiskey, Women & Death" (2004).

"Troubles to Blame" was selected as one of the top albums of 2006 by Bluegrass Now Magazine. "Moonshine" received airplay throughout the United States, Europe and Australia, as well as on XM Satellite Radio. "Troubles to Blame" and "Whiskey, Women & Death" reached No. 1 at WDVX.

The band's music is available at www.earlbrothers.com, www.myspace.com/earlbrothers and www.cdbaby.com/earlbrothers.

Cover for The Earl Brothers' show at Applegate Lodge is $10. Call 541-761-9394.

The Earl Brothers formed about 10 years ago and have four albums to their credit. - Photo by Robert Earl Davis