Steel guitar/Dobro music recommendations?

So I’ve recently discovered this hauntingly beautiful instrument when a burgeoning artist performed at a local bar. I talked with him later and he said he hadn’t recorded any albums yet, but recommended a few I could pick up that where his inspiration. Charlie Parr is the only one that I can remember now, and while I like what I’ve listened to on YouTube what’s there is too upbeat and folksy for my tastes. It’s the sorrow of the music I really like.

What would you recommend?

I like the track Dr. Bernice by Cracker, which has quite a bit of dobro in it. The problem is that dobro is what puts a lot of the twang into country music, and I’m not a fan of that sound. It can be sad and haunting though, as you say.

Jerry Douglas is the most talented artist to ever played the Dobro.

He’s in Alison Krauss’ band, but does a lot of session work and individual stuff.

Also keep in mind that Dobro is the brand name of one type (although the most famous) of resonator guitar

This bears repeating: Jerry Douglas is the most talented artist to ever play the Dobro.

Here he is playing Senia’s Lament.

More Jerry Douglas (this time with Edgar Meyer on bass and Russ Barenberg on guitar): From Ankara To Izmir.

There’s a local musician that plays it quite well - Jim Suhler. He has a solo album, Dirt Road, where he plays it on several songs. He also has a band, Money Beat, that has several albums out. He plays the resonator on a few songs on those albums, but those albums are more Rock-y that the solo album.

I had the good fortune of hearing him live one night when he played it. The bar was nearly empty, as it was a week night. But, sitting 30 feet away, I was able to hear and understand why they call it a resonator in a way that doesn’t come across on the recordings. It was awesome. There was a seperate, under-the-notes hum that filled the room.

ETA - off to check out Jerry Douglas. Thanks for the tip.

I’m from Alabama hillbilly stock and grew up listening to my father’s Roy Acuff albums which featured “Bashful Brother Oswald and his dobro”. Oswald had a few albums of his own.

I didn’t realize until a few years back that Oswald is considered kind of a legend among dobro players. You can find lots of his stuff on YouTube.

Video made when he was in his 80s.

An exquisite album of jazz guitar with pedal steel - Doug and Bucky, starring Doug Jernigan and Bucky Pizzarelli.

Enjoying this thread; thanks for the links.

This one is nice - and Barenberg is playing a cool, vintage Gibson flattop…

Check out the late, great Mike Auldridge as well. In that last link he alternates between playing and giving history lessons on the dobro - you’ll get a few more names from that if you want to.

Great stuff. And that’s quite a group of backup musicians he’s got there- Mark O’Connor on fiddle, Roy Husky Jr. on bass, Marty Stuart on guitar and Earl Scruggs on banjo!

I think my favorite was the second link (with Rob Ickes and Andy Statman)- especially when they broke into Walk Don’t Run! I just wish they showed more of Auldridge’s hands. Not the best camera angle on that audience recording. Nice sound quality, though.

Grab your nuts before cueing up Eric Sardinas, cause he’ll rock them off.

Rev. Peyton of the eponymous Big Damn Band is one hell of a picker in general, and does employ a few dobros. That said, I’m not sure I’d call anything he’s ever done “haunting.” :smiley:

Another late great: Red Rhodes.

Hmm, from reading this thread, I’m gonna have to try out GDBGDB tuning now. Thanks folks.

This isn’t traditional pedal steel, but it’s beautiful, and I find it haunting: Deep Blue Day by Brian Eno. He used country music to communicate the idea of floating in space, to great effect.

Robert Randolph is a very talented pedal steel player; here he is doing a Hendrix tribute.

I figured I’d see Jerry mentioned in the first few posts, and I’m happy to see I was right.

Here’s his The Suit. My apologies to the copyright gods, but I like to share this so folks buy his CDs. This is from “Lookout for Hope”, which also has Senia’s Lament posted above.

I’ve used this song as an example of about as perfect a production as you can get for popular music, with stellar writing, arranging, production, engineering, and performances. You’ll probably recognize the vocalist.

Here’s a friend of mine, John Currie, on Dobro on my Savannah. He recorded this cold after hearing it once, then recording two takes. I used both takes. I think it’s interesting how he took similar but different approaches on the two takes, which resonated nicely with each other when combined.

You can hear more of John’s work on guitar and dobro on Jon Shain’s CDs from Fools and Fine Ladies through Army Jacket Winter.