One only needs to sit through a couple songs of a live Ralph Stanley concert to know that James Price is a heck of a fiddle player. His forceful, confident technique only needs to be put in the spotlight for a brief solo to gain the audiences' ear. Now, thanks to the release of Fiddlin' the Old-Time Way, bluegrass fans and fiddle freaks can listen to Price in the privacy of their own homes. This is a fun set that finds the fiddler sawing his way through 14 old favorites, from "Soldier's Joy" to the "Orange Blossom Special." A number of friends, including guitarist James Alan Shelton, mandolinist John Rigsby, and banjoist Steve Sparkman, fill out the arrangements and add a bit of bounce. Price offers fine renditions of upbeat pieces like "Sally Goodin" without breaking a sweat, but displays the rich tone of his fiddle most clearly on ballads like "Dark as a Dungeon." Price's noted humor has less room to blossom here, but he nonetheless includes his fine imitation of the Man in Black at the end of the "Orange Blossom Special." Fiddlin' the Old Fashioned Way gives Price a chance to step out of the sidelines and into the limelight. Fiddlers and traditional music lovers will be glad he did. ~ Ronnie D. Lankford, Jr.
Dirty Linen (8/03, p.51) - "...Bill Monroe's 'Kentucky Waltz' is given a loving treatment by Price and his guests..."