Moonshiner is the third CD release from Jalan Crossland, offering twelve original songs and two covers of old favorites. Containing the tracks Bosler, Chicken Trucker and Big Horn Mountain Blues it anchors Jalan's songwriting identity, which resides in a simple yet deft mixture of old timey bluegrass and contemporary folk. Jalan's lyrics are infused with humor and small-town images, in a musical setting topped by his brilliant picking. Jalan is joined on the album by his uncle, Dan Marlin rattling the five string banjo with romping zeal, Ryan Bee-Sack on percussion, James Diemer and Abel Johnson on the bass, and Matt Fox on resonator guitar. From his childhood noodling on the 5-string banjo to his present status as an international performing and recording artist, Jalan Crossland has made a life and career of touching people through music. Born in San Francisco in 1970, Jalan was the son of a local rock radio disc jockey and a mountain girl from Wyoming who had come to California to participate in the great social experiment of the age. Jalan grew up in the tiny ranching town of Ten Sleep, Wyoming in the shadow of the Big Horn Mountains, and considers himself a hybrid of the two cultures. 'I've always figured myself to be about half hippy and half hillbilly, kind of a hillhippy. Either way, you don't wear no shoes.' Though Jalan is most widely appreciated for his exceptional guitar playing, his first passion was the banjo. His uncle played the 5-string in Bluegrass and traditional 'knockdown' styles and Jalan, captivated by the sound, eagerly pursued lessons. It wasn't until his early teens that Jalan picked up what would be his primary tool of expression, the guitar. 'You don't want to dive into adolescence playing the banjo,' says Jalan, 'you'll end up going to all the dances alone.' Playing the guitar came naturally to him and by 17 he was earning a living singing and playing on the road with traveling bands. Jalan's music is as culturally diverse as he is, drawing on traditional folk and bluegrass as well as relatively contemporary genres of rock and jazz. 'I like to keep one foot rooted in the old mountain music while the other stumbles wildly forward for some new ground. It is not always a graceful stride.' Graceful or not, and with or without shoes, Jalan continues to enthrall audiences with his enthusiastic stage presence, deadpan humor and dynamic musical performances.
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