Steeldrivers Continue Bluegrass Supremacy On Reckless

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Expatriate Texas fiddler Tammy Rogers describes the formation of the Steeldrivers as a "dream come true."

"I always wanted to be in a killer bluegrass band," says Rogers from her home in Nashville, where the band recently recorded their sophomore release Reckless. "So I was thrilled when Mike Henderson and Chris Stapleton put this band together. It's just something I wanted to do all my musical life."

With superstar pickers like Mark Knopfler sideman Mike Henderson (mandolin, National resonator) Mike Fleming (bass), Richard Bailey (banjo), Stapleton (vocals) and Irving native Rogers, Steeldrivers would qualify as a Nashville supergroup if they were playing nursery rhymes or Christmas carols.

But it's Stapleton's raw, moonshiner-with-a-sharp-knife vocals and the gritty songs he usually co-writes with Henderson that cause even traditionalist bluegrass Nazis to nod their heads and christen Steeldrivers the real deal. So real, in fact, the band has won all kinds of International Bluegrass Music Association awards since releasing Steeldrivers in 2008.

Steeldrivers, "The Reckless Side of Me"

Stapleton, however, left the group last April to, according to the official announcement, spend more time raising his family and concentrating on songwriting, which has always put the most biscuits on his table; in fact, Stapleton currently has a No. 1 hit, "Come Back Song," written with Darius Rucker and Casey Beathard. Stapleton was replaced in the Steeldrivers by Muscle Shoals studio pro Gary Nichols.

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