'Timeless Hits' arrives via exclusive release from Cracker Barrel Old Country Store.
The first release of the year by a major bluegrass act belongs to Russell Moore and IIIrd Tyme Out. "Timeless Hits From The Past… Bluegrassed," an exclusive release from Cracker Barrel Old Country Store is one that the IBMA Award-winning group is very excited to get out to the people.
"We threw some ideas toward each other," Moore tells Billboard, "and what we settled on for the theme of the recording were songs that influenced us individually and as a band as we were growing up listening to music, and how it shaped us into the artists and musicians that we are today."
One such song is the Glen Campbell classic "Gentle On My Mind," which Moore says takes him back to sitting in front of the television circa 1969. "I remember my mom and dad watching the 'Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour.' We used to watch that all the time, and I remember him singing it quite a bit. It was one of the last songs we decided to do. Steve Dilling (the group's banjo player) called me one day, and said 'This is a song that influenced us all, and John Hartford was so well known in the bluegrass circles.' It was a great fit for the recording, and was a great song to kick off the CD with."
Another highlight on the disc is a powerful take on the George Jones / Tammy Wynette gem "Golden Ring." Vocal dynamo Sonya Issacs appears in the Wynette role on the song, and Moore said working with her was nothing short of amazing. "She's a beautiful lady, and such a talent. We've sung together informally at times backstage. When we would be at the same venue on a package show, we'd get together along with her sister Becky, and sing songs that were popular at the time. I don't know if there are any better vocalists out there than the two of them. To have her come in was a blessing for this recording. Her voice is so angelic, and she was the perfect fit."
Moore tells Billboard that the partnership with the restaurant chain makes a lot of sense -- for both parties. "It's a chance for us to be in front of their patrons, and it's a great fit. We feel like we have the same things in mind - friendly service, and the customer always coming first. Cracker Barrel is at the top of the list when it comes to companies that keep their customers happy - great food, great gift shops, and great meals. We feel the same way with our music. We want to entertain our fans and make them feel like they are number one. We want to give them a great experience and a good memory. Teaming up and partnering up was a no brainer for us."