Bankesters Offer Sneak Peek at New Album; Celebrate Louis Armstrong at Satchmo Summerfest; Is Cracker Barrel Country Music’s Starbucks?

Juli Thanki | August 2nd, 2013

  • Vince Gill and Paul Franklin talk gear with Premier Guitar.
  • JD McPherson played a session for WEXT. Listen here.
  • Our filmmaking pal Jeremy Dylan (remember that time we interviewed him about the Jim Lauderdale documentary?) finished a new project: a short documentary on the making of Australian country singer Jasmine Rae’s new record, If I Want To. Check it out.
  • Take a sneak peek at the forthcoming Bankesters album, Love Has Wheels.
  • Cracker Barrel is a “country version of Starbucks, selling well-targeted CDs to its restaurant customers,” writes Don Steinberg of The Wall Street Journal. An excerpt from the article: “You can hyper-target your consumer there,” says Brinson Strickland, a talent manager in Nashville whose client Clint Black has an exclusive album debuting on Cracker Barrel’s label next week…”They know exactly who their customer is. Cracker Barrel sells exactly the same thing that country music does, which is familiarity and comfort.”
  • The Commerce Department is now including creations in the arts and entertainment industries as part of the nation’s GDP. This CBS News video about it includes a sound bite from Jason Isbell.
  • Ethnomusicologist Greg C. Adams discusses the banjo’s history and rising popularity in this Smithsonian blog post.
  • Peter Cooper’s new Tennessean column covers the 30th anniversary of Restless Heart.
  • Jazz guitarist Julian Lage and Punch Brother Chris Eldridge are playing a number of East Coast shows as a duo.
  • Celebrate Louis Armstrong’s legacy this weekend at the 13th annual Satchmo Summerfest in New Orleans.
  • Jewly Hight interviewed Andrew Marlin, one-half of Americana duo Mandolin Orange.
  • Darin & Brooke Aldridge’s next record, Flying, will be released September 17. You can listen to snippets from the album on Amazon.
  • Rodney Crowell in The Chicago Sun-Times: “I watch these young country artists come in and burst onto the scene, and I always have to remind myself that these artists didn’t experience Hank Williams Sr. or Big Joe Turner or Kris Kristofferson, who was able to bring the bedroom and sensual poetry into country music,” says Crowell during a recent interview. “These artists came from a different set of archetypal images. If I took the old school curmudgeon approach, I would say these guys are really missing the boat.” 
  • Billboard’s Ed Christman reports: U.S. album sales have hit new historic lows over the last five weeks marking the longest consecutive stretch in the SoundScan era that the industry has gone without scanning more than 5 million units. And, over the last two weeks, album sales hit consecutive record lows.” Are these lackluster sales due to the “summer doldrums, streaming’s rise, dwindling catalog sales or all three?” 
  • Jim Beviglia takes a look at the story behind Leonard Cohen’s “Bird on the Wire” for American Songwriter.
  1. livewire
    August 2, 2013 at 11:28 am

    Ref: U.S. album sales have hit new historic lows. Well Spotify launched in America! If people are happy enough to listen to compressed music on portable devices through ear buds then Spotify will easily suit their needs even on free service 160kbps stream. Country music has bucked the trend but will show a marked decline in the all important final quarter with no Taylor Swift RED or Aldean’s NIGHT TRAIN which together shifted over 4-million.
    If country radio were to add some better quality music it might generate and push album sales.
    Even the combined might of Lorrie and Pam could only shift 690 copies of DOS DIVAS this week with a #61 Country debut!

  2. Andy
    August 2, 2013 at 11:34 am

    Is anyone left interested in Idol anymore? Urban’s new single is froth and hasn’t sold well and why are radio adding it!. The 2 finalists Kree and Candice both bombed with their first 2 singles with embarassingly low sales. It just an entertainment show that music fans don’t follow up on after its over. Is USA Factor winner Tate Stevens already lost in the ozone? Scotty and Lauren follow up singles not currently doing much.

  3. Bruce
    August 2, 2013 at 2:38 pm

    Andy, we can only hope.

  4. Rick
    August 2, 2013 at 6:49 pm

    Opry Alert! Tonight’s Opry features Holly Williams, Buddy Miller with Jim Lauderdale, James Otto, Mark Wills, Andy Griggs, and Opry Legends. Grade: B
    The Saturday Night Opry features Michael Cleveland and Flamekeeper, Mindy Smith, Andy Gibson, James Wesley, Johnny Counterfeit, Jimmy Wayne and Opry Legends. Grade: B-

    Even though I much prefer the sound of full bit rate CD’s I’ve gone to MP3 single download “cherry picking” as there are so new few songs out there I am interested in purchasing. Why spend money on newly minted mediocrity when there is so much great older music just waiting to be discovered and downloaded?

    It’s too bad Justin Moore is already married as Jasmine Rae is the perfect height for him! Well as long as the heels on her tennis shoes aren’t too tall anyway…(lol)

    With music sales dropping these days it makes total economic sense for artists like Keith Urban and Blake Shelton to get giant paychecks as judges on talent quest reality TV shows. It’s the country music star equivalent of an early retirement plan.

  5. BRUCE
    August 2, 2013 at 10:21 pm

    Just heard Holly Williams on the Opry. I was impressed. I can hear her singing an ending song on the show “Sons of Anarchy”. Just seems her voice would be a fit.

    Jim Ed Brown has an amazing voice for someone his age.

    Riders in the Sky are extremely talented but I can only stand one song from them. For some reason they grate on me after a while. Much like Vince Gill.

  6. Jeremy Dylan
    August 4, 2013 at 11:00 pm

    Cheers for the plug Juli.

    I hope some of the readership here has a watch and gets a taste for one of the leading lights of country down under.

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