See the Seldom Scene Saturday in Pelham
When Dudley Connell joined Seldom Scene in 1995, the group already had a 24-year history, so that band had been there and done that. But for Connell, the current iteration is a little special.
“To be honest, I am having more fun in this band than I’ve ever had. I think having Ron Stewart on banjo and fiddle is part of that. He’s young, or youngish in his 50s, but he has lit a fire in all of us.
“Let me just say that the band that is coming to The Caverns is really, really good.”
Seldom Scene will perform for Bluegrass Underground, the subterranean concert series held in The Caverns near Pelham, Tennessee, on Saturday, Sept. 22, at 4 p.m.
Connell says part of the reason for his excitement is a new record the band is working on. It is their first album on Rounder Records and should be out in January or February. It will feature 14 classic singer-songwriter songs from people like Joanie Mitchell and Bob Dylan.
“When I look back at what they did in the ’60s and ’70s, it was so thoughtful and deep, and you realize they were just kids. It’s amazing.
“I’m real proud of this record. It might be the best thing I’ve been a part of.”
Fans at the show will likely hear some of those songs and also some classic Seldom Scene material such as “From This Moment On” and “Wait a Minute.” But Connell says there is never a set list.
“With 40 years of material, the hard part for us is figuring what to leave out.”
He says that when he joined the band, he was told only that it should be good, and it should be fun.
“I was never told any- thing specific and there was never anything written down on a piece of paper. It’s just a feeling you get when you go out onstage and whatever happens happens. Some shows are better than others because of that.
“There is no schtick. Every show is unique. We’ll chat with the audience. It’s not a performance per se; it’s more of a community effort. We take our music very seriously, and fortunately, we don’t take ourselves too seriously. If we crash and burn, so be it.”
The Seldom Scene, featuring Fred Travers, Lou Reid, Ronnie Simpkins, Dudley Connell and Ron Stewart, will play Bluegrass Underground in The Caverns near Pelham, Tennessee, this weekend.