Daniel Nestlerode
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Daniel Nestlerode

Cambridge, United Kingdom | Established. Jan 01, 2012 | SELF

Cambridge, United Kingdom | SELF
Established on Jan, 2012
Solo Americana Folk




"Almost Home"

Cambridge-based Daniel Nestlerode brings his brand of “authentic Americana” to his second CD, Almost Home. Four self-penned compositions, three standards and three instrumentals compile the ten tracks.

The instrumentals showcase Daniel’s mastery of the mandolin. Red Haired Boy / Salt Creek is a foot-tapping, rhythmically tight number, while Humphrey’s Waltz is gentle and wistful. The up-tempo Locktender’s Reel and Temperance Reel complete the trio. Among Daniel’s four songs, Wounded Knee acknowledges the suffering of native Americans, and Take Us As We Are is a warm and up-beat celebration of domestic chaos, with a fine melody and sing-along chorus. Here And Now is similarly paced, while the closing song, Say Goodbye, is also strong with a hint of poignancy.

Three well-known classics make interesting inclusions. The powerful lyrics of Poor Wayfaring Stranger and Stephen Foster’s wonderful Hard Times Come Again No More have relevance to contemporary issues. Daniel’s versions are straightforward, as is his treatment of the equally familiar Shenandoah. It is easy to imagine Daniel’s live performances truly bringing these great songs to life.

While much of the work on the album is solely Daniel’s, with his mandolin playing as the outstanding feature, he is ably accompanied by Mark Gamon and Paul Ballantyne on guitar, and Marie Mace on bodhrán.

Almost Home is a warm and pleasant listen - a demonstration of marvellous mandolin playing and a collection of easily accessible and classic songs.

Jim McCourt - The Living Tradition

"Almost Home"

Daniel Nestlerode is a singer and songwriter and mandolinist, born in Pennsylvania, who later moved to California to pursue a musical career. He relocated to Cambridge (UK) after marrying, and for the past four years he’s built himself a steady reputation in Americana circles, with well-received spots at festivals including Ely (2015) in tandem with guitarist Paul Ballantyne, who appears on four of the tracks on Almost Home, Daniel’s second full-length collection.

If your bag is unpretentiously well-played, well-sung, accessible Americana, both traditional and contemporary, then you can’t go wrong with Daniel’s music. Almost Home brings us Daniel’s passionate, forthright interpretations of five well-loved items (songs Wayfaring Stranger and Shenandoah, Stephen Foster’s Hard Times and a couple of pairs of tunes) and five of his own original songs. The latter range companionably from the gently uptempo yet meditative Here And Now and the Native-American-themed Wounded Knee to the honest-to-goodness, straightforward, good-time welcoming foot-tapper Take Us As We Are (a highpoint of the disc for me) and affectionate album closer Say Goodbye, with the disc menu being completed by the sublime instrumental Humphrey’s Waltz. Daniel’s skilled handling of the mandolin and octave mandolin (he learnt from David Grisman, one of the very best!) shines out from the proverbial grooves, and ideally complements his warm vocal style, while he also doubletracks a simple guitar part on a couple of tracks. For some of the time, he’s augmented by the above-mentioned Paul Ballantyne, Mark Gamon (guitar or slide guitar) and Marie Mace (bodhrán) – just sufficient embellishment to reinforce the genial down-home nature of the sessions and the music-making.

No quibbles, then – other than a slight trace of reined-in understatement here and there, and the disc’s unexpected brevity (barely 31 minutes).

David Kidman - Fatea


More Than a Little Guitar, December 2013
Almost Home, July 2017



Daniel Nestlerode is an American musician and songwriter living in northern France.  The music Daniel makes falls neatly into the Americana family of genres, he is inspired by Bluegrass, Folk, Country, Rock n Roll, and traditional music from England and Brittany.  
You'll see Daniel playing mostly mandolin family instruments, both acoustic and electric, though he plays guitar as well.

Band Members