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Railroad Earth: Amplified Roots Music

The amplified bluegrass of Railroad Earth defies classification. Sometimes, the combination of strings, drums and amplifiers confuses even the band members themselves.

"I always describe it as a string band, but an amplified string band with drums," mandolin player Tim Carbone says. Guitarist and vocalist Todd Sheaffer adds, "We're a Country & Eastern band."

Railroad Earth doesn't spend time worrying about describing its music, though; its members are just enjoying their time playing together.

In a session with World Cafe host David Dye, Railroad Earth plays songs from its most recent CD, Amen Corner. The impressive improvisation and exceptional songwriting make Railroad Earth an exciting band, but it really thrives in a live setting. In fact, the group's unique combination of rock 'n' roll, bluegrass and improvisation has even earned it the praise of Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh, who included members of Railroad Earth in his Phil & Friends band.

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