Old & In The Way “Old & In The Way”

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#978 in the series.) is  Old and In The Way.

Five great musicians getting together for some great pickin’ and singin.’ I guess you could call it bluegrass but there’s more than a hint of old fashioned mountain music thrown in.

For those of you not familiar with this project, Old and In the Way were Peter Rowan (guitar, vocals), David Grisman (mandolin, vocals), John Kahn (bass), Vassar Clements (fiddle) and Jerry Garcia (banjo, vocals.)

Can I name a stand out cut? No, not really since EVERY track is a must listen. There’s no filler on this classic. This live album was recorded and released in October, 1973.  One you should be familiar with is Peter Rowan’s “Panama Red.”  We first heard about Mr. Red’s adventures a few years early when the song was recorded by The New Riders of the Purple Sage. Another cover tune is The Rolling Stones “Wild Horses.”

There’s an interesting story on how I first heard about this album. It was 1974. My sister and I took a ride to the great Hegewisch Records in Calumet City, Illinois.

She went to pick up the Dead’s From The Mars Hotel album. (Or possibly Europe ’72, That part is a little unclear) When she proceded to check out, Joe the owner, seeing her purchase and then figuring she liked the Dead, gave her some promo 45s that were all Grateful Dead related. I remember it clearly to this day. They were in nice picture sleeve jackets. They were Robert Hunter’s Tiger Rose, a Keith and Donna Godchaux promo, Ned Lagin andPhil Lesh’s Seastones and then of course, Old and In the Way. How cool would it be to have those now!

I didn’t know much about bluegrass nor The Grateful Dead at the time. I quickly became a fan of both.

–Larry Carta

Track listing

  1. “Pig in a Pen” (Traditional) – 2:53
  2. “Midnight Moonlight” (Peter Rowan) – 6:17
  3. “Old and in the Way” (David Grisman) – 3:05
  4. “Knockin’ on Your Door” (trad.) – 3:36
  5. “The Hobo Song” (Jack Bonus) – 5:05
  6. “Panama Red” (Rowan) – 2:57
  7. “Wild Horses” (Jagger, Richards) – 4:19
  8. “Kissimmee Kid” (Vassar Clements) – 3:32
  9. “White Dove” (Carter Stanley) – 4:45
  10. “Land of the Navajo” (Rowan) – 6:19


  • Vassar Clements – fiddle
  • Jerry Garcia – banjo, vocals
  • David Grisman – mandolin, vocals
  • John Kahn – acoustic bass
  • Peter Rowan – guitar, vocals


Back to ‘Cool Album’ HOMEPAGE

Listen to the album in it’s entirety below..


Posted by Larry Carta


  1. Ozzie Yank (06 Feb 2012, 2:02)

    Thanks for the memories – My first radio (commercial) job was a midnight dawn shift and one night discovered this album on the music cirector’s desk – as the station at the time would have never played it then or now for that matter, I liberated it and added to my collection – your review and the music always brings great memories of that summer when I landed in radio and almost as important when I became a OITW convert!
    BTW Peter Rowan is one of the many artists apeparing at next months Port Fairy Folk festival (Australia) and hope to get a chance to meet him and sign my vinyl copy!
    keep on truckin
    ozzie yank

  2. Randy Pettenon (08 Feb 2012, 9:52)

    Old and in the Way, Can I get this album on CD?

    • Larry Carta (08 Feb 2012, 11:51)

      It’s pretty hard to find Randy. You’re best best would be eBay I believe.

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