Sturgill Simpson has surprise-released a new double album, Cuttin’ Grass Vol 1 – The Butcher Shoppe Sessions. As the title implies, it's a bluegrass record and he made it at Nashville's famed Butcher Shoppe studios with ace session players ("bona fide wizards"), reworking 20 songs from throughout his catalog. (Nothing from last year's rock-leaning Sound & Fury, though.)

He came up with the idea while he was recovering from coronavirus earlier this year and calls it "a mixtape for the fans." “I had it in my mind for a long time that someday I want to cut as many of these songs as possible in this fashion, just organic and stripped down to the raw bones of the composition," Sturgill says. "If you can’t sit down and play a song like that, it’s probably a pretty shitty song.”

The record includes versions of "Turtles All the Way Down," "Life Ain’t Fair and The World Is Mean," "Long White Line," "Life of Sin," and more. Listen below.

Sturgill's friend and tourmate Tyler Childers released a surprise bluegrass album this year too.

Cuttin’ Grass Vol 1 – The Butcher Shoppe Sessions tracklist:
1. All Around You
2. All The Pretty Colors
3. Breaker’s Roar
4. I Don’t Mind
5. I Wonder
6. Just Let Go
7. Life Ain’t Fair and The World Is Mean
8. A Little Light
9. Life of Sin
10. Long White Line
11. Living The Dream
12. Old King Coal
13. Railroad of Sin
14. Sitting Here Without You
15. Sometimes Wine
16. The Storm
17. Time After All
18. Turtles All The Way Down
19. Voices
20. Water In A Well

PLAYERS
Vocals, Rhythm Guitar: Sturgill Simpson
Mandolin, Vocals: Sierra Hull
Bass: Mike Bub
Fiddle, Vocals: Stuart Duncan
Banjo, Vocals: Scott Vestal
Rhythm Guitar, Lead Guitar, Vocals: Tim O’Brien
Rhythm Guitar, Lead Guitar, Vocals: Mark Howard
Percussion, Vocals: Miles Miller