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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

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11/14/2012 8:52:00 AM
Sons of the Pioneers a true delight
By Merlyn Brown
Special to The Verde Independent

Yippee ky-oh ky-yay! What a fantastic afternoon's feast of Western music - songs and instrumentals - was heard last Sunday afternoon, when - even with the multitude of opposing shows in Cottonwood that weekend - the Verde Valley Concert Association - celebrating 60 years of bringing superb performing art to our area - hit one out right of the park as they presented "Sons of the Pioneers" at the packed Mingus High School auditorium.

From the outset, the "Sons" set the tone, as they launched into a perennial favorite "Ghost Riders in the Sky", which had the audience cheering, clapping and anticipating even more gems to come. We were not disappointed.

The six "Sons" have the recipe for seamless, smooth harmonies down pat. The balance among them was perfect - it was hard to say which member contributed the most. Certainly lead singer Randy Rudd, with his wonderful baritone delivery, was a stand-out, but all six "Sons" contributed their individual talents not only to the magnificent singing, but also the outstanding instrumental offerings. In addition to the songs that have become their trademarks, such as "Cool Water" and "Tumbling Tumbleweeds", the audience was treated to various other lesser-known but interesting songs in the Western and cowboy idiom. Humor was abundant as well as musicality. If there was one criticism of the concert, it would perhaps be that the audience did not get enough of the sensational fiddle-playing of world champion Ricky Boen.

This is the third time that the VVCA has presented this exciting group, but hopefully it will not be the last.

The concert certainly left the enthusiastic audience wanting more.

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