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Lil’ Rev: Claw and Hammer (Fountain of Uke)

Sep. 13, 2016
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clawandhammer

Regardless of circumstances, Lil’ Rev probably would have cut another CD. But for his latest, Claw and Hammer, Milwaukee’s prolific folk-singing exponent of old-time music was impelled by tragic circumstances. After the death of his wife, “I decided if I was to move forward, I should find something constructive to do.” 

The resulting album focuses, as have many of his recent projects, on ukulele. Claw and Hammer’s title refers to the clawhammer style of playing usually associated with banjo. Rev brings this stiff-fingered down stroke to bear on the diminutive instrument to delightful effect. Claw and Hammer includes a mixture of vocal and instrumental numbers. “Epiphany in Gm” and “Old No. 7” are originals, but fit seamlessly with the antique folk songs of which most of the album is comprised.

Rev sings the material with more authority than ever, and is joined by a cohort of local friends including John and Mike Sieger from Semi-Twang, folk duo Will Branch and Dave Fox, vocalist Robin Pluer and veteran guitarists James Eannelli, Jason Klagstad and Peter Roller.

Lil’ Rev and friends will perform at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 22 at Boswell Book Co., 2559 N. Downer Ave. 

The Sports section of the Shepherd Express is brought to you by Miller Time Pub.

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