The Time Jumpers went underground this Memorial Day holiday, but not for the purpose of secrecy. The home of the Bluegrass Underground, Cumberland Caverns, hosted the 11-member band for a second time inside their McMinnville, Tenn., concert cave on Friday, May 23.
Emceed by one-third of the fiddle trio, Kenny Sears, group members featured on the bill included Vince Gill, Dawn Sears, and “Ranger Doug” Green. Many more talented session musicians on stage included Gill’s Bakersfield partner Paul Franklin (steel), Andy Reiss (guitar), Brad Albin (bass), Billy Thomas (drums), Jeff Taylor (keys, accordion), Larry Franklin (fiddle) and Joe Spivey (fiddle).
The timeless tunesmiths took turns featuring one another through a set that included 13+ pieces, including Bob Wills’ “Sugar Moon” and “I Hear You Talkin’,” Buck Owens’ “Together Again,” and originals “Faint of Heart” (Gill), “All Aboard” (Franklin) and “Blue Highway Blue” (Thomas).
Audience members had spelunked to their first-come-first-served seats before the 7 p.m. curtain call, leaving standing-room only options for stragglers.
Even 333 feet below ground, the Time Jumpers sound acoustically precise. Two JBL eon speakers lit up the room auditorily, while ellipsoidal lighting faded through varying spectrums of rock projections. Dubbed the Volcano Room, the 56-degree amphitheater is surprisingly insulated from reverb, projecting the sometimes sultry tunes (“Sweet Memories”) through the cavern.
Be sure to catch the Time Jumpers at their regular set in Nashville, every Monday evening at 3rd and Lindsley.
So far, 2014 has included underground concerts from Michael Martin Murphey, Jason Isbell, Shovels and Rope, Lucinda Williams, Davina and the Vegabonds, Steep Canyon Rangers, and Widespread Panic.
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