Norman Blake, now in his 80s, has added to his legendary status in American music by putting together a new album. His single, “Time” forms a kind of “thesis statement” for the new album Day by Day, arriving on Oct 22nd from Smithsonian Folkways Recordings.
For those who may not know, guitarist Norman Blake has had a very long career with interesting paths that put him in the forefront of multiple revivals of Roots music, from his time in the late 60s and 70s as the house guitarist for Johnny Cash and his playing on Bob Dylan’s Nashville Skyline, to his work creating Newgrass with the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and reinventing Bluegrass for a new generation with T Bone Burnett on the O Brother, Where Art Thou? soundtrack in the 2000s.
Blake has had nine Grammy nominations, but has continued to follow a “humble” approach to the music itself. He’s also been known to be in the midst of a “personal renaissance”, releasing five albums in the last ten years for Plectrafone Records. He records entirely by hand in and around his rural home in Georgia. His new album for Smithsonian Folkways, Day by Day, features favorite Folk songs and a few originals done in single take recordings.