Todd Grebe & Cold Country are based out of the wilds of Alaska, where for years they ruled the bluegrass scene in this state. Todd’s wife and musical partner, Angela Oudean, was a key member of famed Alaska bluegrass band Bearfoot for years (Todd joined Bearfoot as well), and though it may be a surprise to some that the music they make now is hard-driving, electrified honky-tonk at its core, the truth is that there’s a strong current that unites bluegrass and country. Like songs written about real people with real problems, or songs celebrating the simple victories of life with a sardonic sense of humor. You’ll hear this on Citizen, and you’ll hear that Grebe has a powerfully directed voice as a songwriter. He’s able to capture a moment effortlessly, turning it into a larger commentary on people we all recognize. In “Box of Wine,” Grebe winkingly sings
Todd Grebe & Cold Country rolled into The Butcher Shoppe studio in Nashville to work with Grammy-award winning recording engineer David Ferguson, famous for his work with Johnny Cash, and dove deep into a more electrified country sound. Cold Country alum NATE MAY traded in his mandolin for a telecaster, and LARRY ATAMANUIK (Alison Krauss) jumped on the drums. Bassist MIKE BUB (Del McCoury, Ashley Monroe) came on to co-produce the album and play bass, and special guests were invited, like pedal steel wizard Steve Hinson (George Jones), renowned Nashville session pianist Jimmy Wallace, and guitarist Megan McCormick (Jenny Lewis). Todd and Angela led the parade, trading off harmonies on the songs, and bringing Angela’s hard-driving fiddle to the fore.
With Citizen, Todd Grebe & Cold Country make the case that they’ve always belonged as a heavy-rolling honky-tonk band. Country was the key to their bluegrass from the start, and that’s why they were able to switch over so effortlessly. Now it’s clear that Todd Grebe & Cold Country are ready to take the dancehalls by storm.