LARRY SPARKS 'Ramblin Bluegrass'
This record, the only one that Sparks recorded for the KING /STARDAY label, is considered one of the first solo recordings that he made on his own, though there were actually other LPs cut for the PINE TREE label that featured essentially the same group (with Wendy Miller on mandolin, Mike Lilly on banjo and Art Wydner on bass). Sparks was the first vocalist that Ralph Stanley signed up shortly after Carter Stanley’s death in 1966. Sparks stayed with Stanley around 3 years and this album was cut (as an LP) in 1972. It’s a good record, if somewhat marred by a lot of echo. It does include several nice songs that have remained part of Sparks’ extensive repertoire to this day: JUST LOVIN’ YOU, LIFE OF SORROW and GOODBYE LITTLE DARLIN’. A worthwhile disc for fans of this great artist.