Boston is hardly the first place that comes to mind when one thinks of bluegrass, but in fact, Vol. 6 of Fantasy's series The Prestige/Folklore Years focuses on bluegrass artists who were active in and around Boston in the 1960s. Spanning 1960-64, this CD turns its attention to sessions by the Charles River Valley Boys and the team of banjo player Bill Keith and guitarist Jim Rooney. On one of the sessions, the Valley Boys are joined by Yankee fiddler Tex Logan. Those who might have reservations about northerners playing bluegrass needn't worry -- the artists obviously have a strong feeling for the musical traditions of Appalachia, and while they may not qualify as some of bluegrass' all-time greats, their enthusiasm comes through. Keith, in fact, was good enough to work with Bill Monroe's Bluegrass Boys -- which, for a bluegrass artist, is equivalent to a jazzman being hired by Duke Ellington or a funkster being employed by James Brown. This is an album of performances that are engaging and heartfelt, if less than essential.
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AllMusic Review by Alex Henderson