Clinch Mountain Echo

Ralph Stanley - My All And All

(Rebel REB-CD-1740) 1997


My All And All
CD Tray

Average Album Rating: 3

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This Gospel album was recorded at Maggard Studio in Big Stone Gap, Va and released in 1997, although there is no specified recording date.

As with the previous Short Life Of Trouble release, Ralph handles lead vocals on all but one track, which is sung by Ralph II. It's noticeable how Ralph's voice got lower in pitch with age, which may be why he sang lead more than tenor, or it could be that in 1997 Ralph II was still developing his craft.

Steve Sparkman handles the majority of the banjo duties on this album, with Ralph playing clawhammer on just one (The Uncloudy Day). Several tracks have fairly sparse instrumentation with no banjo, which together with the two a cappella numbers (This Old Troublesome World and While Eternal Ages Roll), add to the overall dynamics.

John Rigsby also contributes some neat 'Pee Wee' mandolin work and tenor vocals; while James Alan Shelon and James Price perform splendidly too, with supportive 'Shuffler' style cross-picked guitar and fiddle respectively.

The Isaacs sisters also help out with harmony vocals on The Uncloudy Day (Sonya and Becky) and Two Coats (Sonya). The latter being a haunting re-work of Ralph's song from the classic 1971 Cry From The Cross LP.

The Uncloudy Day, (We Are) Drinking From The Fountain and Take Me Home had previously been recorded by The Stanley Brothers (for Wango and King respectively).

Three of the tracks are co-written by Franklin Viers, an Old Baptist preacher from Dickenson County. He had previously provided If I Could Crown You Mother for Ralph's 1983 LP Child Of The King.

Larry Fuller had previously recorded his I'll Be Wearing A Crown Of Glory on the 'Larry Fuller & The Born Again - A Tribute To Mom & Dad' LP (Old Homestead OHS 70062) 1985. Likewise Loving Grace Of God appeared on the 'The Sloas Brothers - I'm Going Home Again' LP (REM Records LP-1023) 1967, and was suggested for the album by John Rigsby.[1]

The Sloas Brothers were an early influence for John Rigsby, who had been taught the all important aspects of tone in fiddling by John Sloas.[2]

A short clip of tha band recording I Firmly Promise You can be seen at the beginning of the Ralph Stanley Story DVD.

(*) Ralph II sings lead on one track, Jesus On The Mainline.

Track:
Title:
CD:
(35:05)
1
Jesus On The Mainline

P.D. arr R. Stanley
2
He's My All And All

Franklin Viers / R. Stanley
3
I'll Be Wearing A Crown Of Glory

Larry Fuller
4
This Old Troublesome World

Franklin Viers / R. Stanley
5
Loving Grace Of God

Lonnie R. Nipper / John Sloas
6
The Uncloudy Day

Rev. J.K. Algood / J.F. Kinsey
7
I'm Not Ashamed

Virginia Bloomfield
8
We Are Drinking From The Fountain

R. Stanley
9
Take Me Home

P.D.
10
While Eternal Ages Roll

Franklin Viers / R. Stanley
11
Two Coats

R. Stanley
12
I Firmly Promise You

P.D. arr R. Stanley

Go To Top Of Page [1] Gary B. Reid's liner notes to 'My All And All'.
[2] Gary B. Reid's liner notes to Ralph Stanley II & John Rigsby - 'Clinch Mountain Echo' (Copper Creek CCCD-0151) 1996.