DONNA ULISSE, “An Easy Climb,” Hadley Music Group. 13 tracks.

Donna Ulisse (you-liss-ee) is a singer-songwriter.

That designation used to mean pop music.

But as bluegrass has expanded its horizons in the 21st century, it’s made room for bluegrass singer-songwriters like Ulisse.

The Hampton, Va., native wrote all 13 tracks on this her fourth album.

Sometimes, that suggests a vanity project.

But this is simply good bluegrass.

“An Easy Climb” is something Ulisse’s music career hasn’t had.

She headed for Music City in the 1980s, found work as a demo singer and was signed by Atlantic Nashville.

In 1991, the label released her first CD, “Trouble at the Door,” which produced two videos and three singles.

Ulisse appeared on “Hee Haw,” “Nashville Now” and other country music shows.

And then, she disappeared.

In 2007, Ulisse returned to recording, recast as a “bluegrass poet” who performed “bluegrass without borders.”

She’s married to Rick Stanley, a cousin of Ralph and Carter.

And that helped open a few doors for her.

But mostly, it’s her voice and songs that have taken Ulisse to the top of bluegrass charts and to festivals as far away as the Russian Bluegrass Festival in Vologda.

“Shady Glen” is a great Civil War story song about Yankee soldiers who destroy a town, kill the men and rape the women — and a woman who gets her revenge.

“Black Snake” is an uptempo song about moonshine runners and revenue agents.

“Where The Cold Wind Blows” is about military families separated in war time.

“Flat Broke in Arkansas” tells about a woman who left her husband and is flat broke but happy.

And “Hand Me Down Home” finds a new generation moving into the family homeplace.

Good album by a good singer-songwriter.

Can’t find it in stores? Try www.DonnaUlisse.com.

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