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Michael Cleveland Takes Home Best Bluegrass Album GRAMMY™ for ‘TALL FIDDLER’

TALL FIDDLER
#1 on the Roots Music Bluegrass Chart
#1 on the Roots Music Contemporary Bluegrass Chart

 #2 Debut on the Billboard Top Bluegrass Album Sales Chart

“It’s truly one of the best albums I’ve heard in a LONG time.”
Kyle Cantrell, SiriusXM Bluegrass Junction 

“It is a truly remarkable cut [Tall Fiddler], showing what can happen when you let a pair of virtuosi loose in the studio. Michael trades licks with Australian guitar maestro Tommy Emmanuel on an absurdly fast run at the tune and man… do the sparks fly.” —Bluegrass Today

“He takes no prisoners but he plays with a restraint and a soul. 
He plays without abandon.” —Vince Gill 
Fiddler Michael Cleveland’s indomitable spirit, rare talent and work ethic have brought him to the pinnacle of his profession with TALL FIDDLERthe 2020 Bluegrass GRAMMY™ award winner. Co-produced by Jeff White and Sean Sullivan along with Cleveland, the tracks are peppered with the same level of musical potency that first lit a fire in Cleveland, prompting him to form his band Flamekeeper, recently profiled in the inspiring documentary Flamekeeper: The Michael Cleveland Story. 

“Untouchable.” That’s how Vince Gill describes the playing of Cleveland in the documentary, which shows us Cleveland’s path from child prodigy to the present. Cleveland’s received a previous Grammy nomination and has garnered a record-setting 12 wins as “Fiddle Player of the Year” by the International Bluegrass Music Association. Cleveland’s fellow musicians agree with Gill, with Cleveland’s masterful playing attracting an all-star roster of guests on this album. 

This is evident from TALL FIDDLER‘s first cut, which finds Cleveland riffing with guitar hero Tommy Emmanuel on the title track, a call-and-response battle between two expert duelers. He keeps the energy up on “Tarnation,” an original composition featuring banjo visionary Béla Fleck that finds both players racing toward an explosive finish. And on his version of John Hiatt’s “Tennessee Plates,” he embraces the greasy, soulful stylings of Memphis, interpreting the irreverent tale of road trips and robberies with help from guest vocalist Sam Bush.
Bluegrass legend Del McCoury appears on TALL FIDDLER, singing “Beauty of My Dreams” with Flamekeeper vocalist Josh Richards. Elsewhere, Dan Tyminski harmonizes with Richards on the chugging “Son of a Ramblin’ Man” and the gorgeous “Mountain Heartache,” which also features Jerry Douglas on Dobro. Tim O’Brien and the Travelin’ McCourys make appearances too, helping flesh out an album that, while a collaborative effort, is guided by the unparalled gifts of Michael Cleveland.