Clay County | Waiting For The Fall

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Folk: Progressive Folk Country: Traditional Bluegrass Moods: Type: Acoustic
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Waiting For The Fall

by Clay County

a bluegrass band performing original material written by lead singer Susan Nikas.
Genre: Folk: Progressive Folk
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Long Hot Bath
2:38 $0.99
2. Waiting For the Fall
3:05 $0.99
3. Clay County Breakdown
2:45 $0.99
4. Night Blooming Jasmine
3:42 $0.99
5. Count My Blessings
2:52 $0.99
6. Elegy
4:04 $0.99
7. Yellow Van
2:43 $0.99
8. I Love the Fall
2:45 $0.99
9. I Am Just a Stranger
3:40 $0.99
10. That Old Familiar Melody
2:13 $0.99
11. Cold Hearted Women
3:13 $0.99
12. For Hoyt
3:10 $0.99
13. Pay Your Money
2:47 $0.99
14. You Don't Know 'til You Get There
2:39 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
"Clay County is almost unknown and unfortunately an underrated west-coast bluegrass band for most of us. their originality bases on the band's enthusiastic leader's Susan Nikas'fine orignial songs (both lyrics and music) which they perform with joy and shine and drive....their music has a very original feel and i do not find any similar artists or is a much more unique is just very simple but original, listener-friendly music."
Jaanus Vainu (internet review)

"Just in time for the autumn season comes 'Waiting For The Fall', a pleasant compilation of original bluegrass from the California-based Clay County. The band consists of Frank Abrahams(mandolin), Jim Dawson(banjo), Susan Nikas (guitar) and Jim Logue (bass). Superpicker Dennis Caplinger guests on a variety of instruments. However is is Susan's harty vocals that dominate the proceedings. She is also the composer of all 13 songs including the title song, the amusing "Long Hot Bath", "That Old Familiar Melody", I Am Just a Stranger", and "I Love the Fall". There is also a poignant tribute in memory of the late
Hoyt Axton. Jim Dawson wrote the instrumental "Clay County
Breakdown". For sheer entertainment "Waiting for the Fall"
is a delightful parcel of innovative bluegrass from a musical aggregation that definitely warrents close scrutiny ...." BLUEGRASS UNLIMITED,OCTOBER 2001

"This is the kind of good time, homegrown sound that has been sorely missed in the CD age." Christopher Powers, WORT

"Impressed with this California group....Like the old time flavor in their music." Wilson Moore, CHMA

The recording has got that real homegrown feel (without sacrificing quality)that I like." Scott MacKinnon, WSMU

Clay County consists of Frank Abrahams on Mandolin, Jim Dawson on Banjo and vocals, Jim Logue on Bass, and Susan Nikas on Guitar and lead vocals. They have been a band for fourteen years and have produced six recording projects. WAITING FOR THE FALL is their most recent and is all original material.



to write a review

Joe Ross, Bluegrass Now

Earthy appeal and a good time feeling
San Dimas, California may not be considered as the center of the bluegrass universe, but it's been home to Clay County, a band that presents an old-time and folky musical style that exudes earthy appeal and a good time feeling. Originally from Clay County, West Virginia, banjo-player Jim Dawson formed the group in 1987 with mandolinist Frank Abrahams and guitarist Susan Nikas. Bass player Jim Logue is the bass player on the albums, although he has since left the band to be replaced by Leslie Spitz. On their third (How's Your Heart?) and fourth (Waiting for the Fall) albums, the band is supplemented with the guest artistry of Dennis Caplinger who provides solid banjo, dobro, fiddle, mandolin licks, fills and breaks. He's also credited with electric bass on Clay County's fourth album. The other "star" of both of these projects is lead vocalist Susan Nikas, who composed nearly all of the material on both CDs. Some of her songs work better than others, and perhaps just a little retooling would help those where she asserts her poetic license to use a few awkward rhymes to get her message across. She pays tribute to Hoyt Axton in the song, "For Hoyt," who inspired her with such wisdom as "success is loving what you do, and you just loved to sing." Nikas' husky alto is a little more calm and sedate than those women's voices in the belt-em-out school of Rose Maddox and Molly O'Day. I especially liked those songs that could be considered novelty numbers like "Got Milk?" and "Long Hot Bath." Others like "Pay Your Money" have catchy little melodies and repetitive lyrics that are easy to embed on the memory.

My guess is that Clay County would be crowd-pleasers at traditional bluegrass festivals where attendees in an older demographic group casually like to tap their toes, hum along and sway to the beat of the band on melodic numbers like "Little Liza Jane." I also understand that Clay County has won numerous contests including the Topanga Banjo and Fiddle Contest. Don't expect these discs to win Grammy Awards, but what they lack in flawless musicality is offset by pure, simple, and homey country charm. All song lyrics are included in the albums' jackets. Clay County's attitude towards music might best be described in Nikas' self-penned "That Old Familiar Melody" in which she sings "Play the tunes while we can, laugh and dance, sing and grin." (Joe Ross, staff writer, Bluegrass Now)