Ron Block

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Ron Block playing his banjo

Ronald Franklin "Ron" Block (born July 30, 1964) is an American bluegrass and alternative country musician, mainly playing the banjo and the guitar, singing, and writing gospel music.

Biography[edit]

Block was born in 1964 in Inglewood, California. He received his first guitar at 11. He first became interested in banjo at 13, after seeing Earl Scruggs play on television. His interest in guitars and singing grew after seeing The Stanley Brothers and Larry Sparks. He is best known for his participation in the Grammy Award winning band, Alison Krauss & Union Station.

For the past twenty years, Ron Block has been the spiritual touchstone of Alison Krauss and Union Station, contributing sterling musicianship on banjo, guitar, vocals, and songwriting.

Alison Krauss and Union Station have recorded 10 of Block’s songs since 1992, including There Is A Reason," "In The Palm of Your Hand," "Jesus Help Me To Stand," and "A Living Prayer, which received a 2006 Gospel Music Association Dove award. His songs have also been recorded and performed by Rhonda Vincent (“You’re In My Heart”), Randy Travis (“Which Way Will You Choose”), Dan Tyminski (“Be Assured,” “The One You Lean On,” and “It All Comes Down To You”), Michael W. Smith (“Loving You Eternally”), Rhonda Vincent (“You’re In My Heart”), the Cox Family, and the Forbes Family.

Block’s first solo album, Faraway Land (Rounder, 2001), met with great critical acclaim and raised the bar for Block as an artist for his Rounder Records follow-up, DoorWay. Boasting an all-star lineup featuring Alison Krauss, Dan Tyminski, Jerry Douglas, Barry Bales, Adam Steffey, Stuart Duncan, Viktor Krauss, Suzanne and Sidney Cox, Andy Hubbard (Little Big Town) and Homer, Lisa, and Lori Forbes, among others. Billboard Magazine/All Music Guide says, “Ron Block is best known to bluegrass lovers as the banjo player with Union Station, Alison Krauss’ backing band. But he’s also an excellent singer, songwriter, and guitarist, and on his second solo album he expands his stylistic parameters to very winning effect…” Barnes and Noble: “His Union Station mates Jerry Douglas and Dan Tyminski may be better known, but Ron Block levels the playing field with his second solo album, an assertive exploration of his Christian faith…”

Ron has also produced The Forbes Family’s In the Shadow of Your Wings," a classic of contemporary bluegrass gospel, and co-produced and played on Sierra Hull’s debut recording, Secrets.

Block has also recorded with Dolly Parton, Brad Paisley, Fernando Ortega, Andrew Peterson, Susan Ashton, Vince Gill, the Cox Family, Clint Black, Dan Tyminski, Bill Frisell, Josh Turner, Billy Dean, Michael Johnson, Ronnie Bowman, Dailey and Vincent, Bradley Walker, Twila Paris, McBride and the Ride, and many other country, bluegrass, and Christian artists, and received an Album of the Year Grammy Award for his work on the "O Brother, Where Art Thou soundtrack.

Discography[edit]

Title Album details Peak positions
US Bluegrass
Faraway Land
DoorWay
  • Release date: June 19, 2007
  • Label: Rounder Records
7
Walking Song
  • Release date: July 30, 2013
  • Label: Rounder Records
7
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

References[edit]

External links[edit]