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The latest CD from folksinger, songwriter and author Mark Dvorak touches all the bases. In ten tracks, “Back Home” has all the variety listeners have come to expect, including a three song live set recorded at a WFMT 98.7 fm “Folk Stage” event: Ruben You Can Play Your Banjo, I Hate to See the Summer Go and Dvorak’s rousing commentary, It’ll Be Better.
North Platte, Nebraska is a spoken word essay from Dvorak’s 2013 book “Bowling for Christmas & Other Tales from the Road.”
Once I Had an Old Banjo is a traditional song Dvorak learned from a cassette recording of Old Town School of Folk Music legend Fleming Brown teaching it to a class in the mid-1960s. Over the Waterfall / Arkansas Traveler are two tunes that sparkle with Dvorak’s banjo picking.
Two classics from the Great American Songbook are also included in the set. It’s a Sin to Tell a Lie, first recorded by Fats Waller in 1936, and the Gershwin’s eternal Someone to Watch Over Me.
Pueblo, Colorado is a story-song written by Dvorak after having a conversation with a young man just out of the service he met at a roadside diner in Kansas. The CD ends with another Dvorak original, the country-flavored, Old Friends.
Dvorak plans to release more projects on his own label, Ten Fingers, in the coming months. Everything is recorded in his home studio in Riverside, Illinois. The arrangements are simple, the production clean.
1. It’s a Sin to Tell a Lie (B. Mayhew) 3:17
2. Once I Had an Old Banjo (traditional) 2:39
3. Pueblo, Colorado (M. Dvroak) 3:35
4. North Platte, Nebraska • spoken word (M. Dvorak) 11:08
5. LIVE • Ruben You Can Play Your Banjo (B. Bean) 3:25
6. LIVE • I Hate to See the Summer Go (M. Dvorak) 3:54
7. LIVE • It’ll Be Better (M. Dvorak) 3:56
8. Over the Waterfall • Arkansas Traveler (traditional) 2:49
9. Someone to Watch Over Me (George & Ira Gershwin) 2:55
10. Old Friends (M. Dvorak) 3:25
Dvorak back at home with new CD • BY PAUL SCHINGLE • JULY 24, 2015
You know, people you have talent, have talent. I’d love to take credit for that wonderful bit of insight, but alas, if goes to my mom. She told me that one time, two and a half decades ago when we were talking about Cher (but that’s another, unrelated story).
Mark Dvorak is a teacher, guitar/banjo player, writer, storyteller and recording artist. What can you say? This guy’s got talent.