Reading Ricky Skaggs' bio is like skimming a list of country, folk and rock critical darlings. The celebrated mandolin player started out as a sideman for Ralph Stanley and Emmylou Harris, recorded with Bruce Hornsby and has jammed with Phish and the Raconteurs. But such ecumenical tastes haven't dulled his love for bluegrass from his native Kentucky. This past fall Skaggs released Solo: Songs My Dad Loved, and the disc pays tribute to his musical roots with little more than mandolin, banjo, fiddle and his slightly weathered, tenor voice. While Skaggs plays and sings every note on Solo, this week he'll be joined by his all-star backing quintet, Kentucky Thunder.
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