Smoke Creek

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Just Plain Folks

Down by the Barber Pole was nominated for a 2004 Award in the "Traditional Folk Song" category. The Just Plain Folks Music Organization has officially announced the nominees for their 2004 Just Plain Folks Music Awards. After receiving over 10,000 albums and 140,000 songs from 85 countries, Nominations for Best Song in 48 Genres and Best Album in 57 categories have been posted.

Heritage Music Review

... Murray is a master storyteller who brings his characters, real and fictitious alike, into sharp focus. When complemented by Susan Ellis's expressive melodies, his tales about the struggles and triumphs of everyday people become folk songs in the most artistically meaningful sense. His voice, which usually takes the lead, is strong and expressive: imagine Burl Ives with a bit more twang and gusto....With their compelling vocal blend and scrupulously authentic instrumental work,...a musical match made in hillbilly heaven... (August, 1997)

Sing Out!

... Of particular note is Murray's "He Never Looked Her Way,", a poignant reminder that no one is so blind as he who chooses not to see. "Whiskey Road" and "Red Pickup" are thoughtful and evocative songs in which both Murray and Ellis show considerable writing ability...With Murray primarily on clawhammer banjo and Ellis on fiddle, the music carries a strong old-time flavor, with an occasional dobro or harmonica thrown in.... good instrumentally and nicely arranged, the real heart of the album is the blend of the two voices, which is reminiscent of another talented Pacific Northwest duo, Cliff Perry and Laurel Bliss.... accomplished musicians, singers and songwriters ... (June-August, 1997)

Victory Review

...enjoyable album... nicely arranged and well-recorded. Most of the songs are originals, written in an old-time, story telling style......."Old Bangum", a traditional ballad performed a cappella, gives Mike a chance to really show off his fine, resonant voice, and "You Already Gave the Bride Away" lets Susan demonstrate she can sing lead as well as harmony.... (March, 1997)

Disc Collector

...For old time music collectors, it should be a must for your collection... If you collect old traditional country/folk, you should not be disappointed with this project. (January, 1998)

Fame Reviews

They liked us. Obviously insightful folks. Check it out.

The Old Time Herald

They didn't think we were old time enough. Too much like them new-fangled cats like John Prine, and Townes Van Zandt. Oh, well, can't win 'em all. Check out their review and see if you agree.

Other listeners say

Album is great! Well produced and clean sound, which is hard to find when producing folk music -- Love listening to it -- heartfelt, sound writing that rings true... (Char Seawell) Smoke Creek's new CD is wonderful! I listened to it yesterday twice through -- cried, smiled, tapped my feet. Good job! Do more... (Jan Demorest)