The popular acoustic group Greensky Bluegrass offer up a spirited cover of John Prine’s classic “Speed of the Sound of Loneliness” in a new video released on Thursday. The track appears on the group’s Leap Year Sessions Vol. 2, taken from a collection of live performances they gave in 2020.
For the “Speed of the Sound of Loneliness,” Greensky Bluegrass play things pretty straight, not fussing too much with Prine’s original tempo but dropping in some tasteful Dobro from Anders Beck. It’s a nice full-band showcase that highlights the intuitive way the group of Beck, Dave Bruzza, Mike Devol, Michael Arlen Bont, and Paul Hoffman work together in a live setting.
“John Prine’s music has always inspired us,” guitarist Bruzza says. “We wanted to do some different covers during these shows, and since he passed away in April we thought this would be a nice tribute to him and his music. I originally thought we should play ‘Souvenirs,’ but this one was a better fit for us to play as a band. It also happens to be one of my brother’s favorite songs.”
The Leap Year Sessions concept came about during the pandemic when they had no live events on the calendar and resorted to streaming concerts for their fans. They rented a space to perform a series of shows and captured high-quality audio with the intention of eventually releasing it all in full.
“We tackled eight full sessions with no repeats covering a broad spectrum of our catalog,” Hoffman says. “Normally, we release all of our live performances and though there are few to choose from in 2020, the year will not go undocumented. So the result is this, the Leap Year Sessions.”
On the live performance front, 2021 is looking considerably brighter for Greensky Bluegrass. The group has concert dates beginning in May and stops including Bonnaroo on September 5th and a trio of Red Rocks dates starting September 17th.