Friday Five: Oklahoma’s Rising Stars
These days it seems as though Oklahoma’s chief export is Americana singer-songwriters. Here are a few of our favorite rising stars from the Sooner State.
5. John Moreland
If you haven’t heard John Moreland’s name before, you might have heard his music on Sons of Anarchy (with his beard and tattoos, Moreland could easily be mistaken for one of the show’s bikers). His In the Throes album, released last summer, was an under-the-radar gem full of starkly beautiful alt-country.
4. JD McPherson
McPherson’s scorching, retro rock and roll was catapulted onto the national scene when Rounder Records re-released his damn good Signs and Signifiers record. McPherson’s music is best experienced at one of his sweat-drenched live shows; if he plays your town, make attendance a priority.
3. Carter Sampson
With deeply personal lyrics and a bell-clear voice, Sampson is reminiscent of a young Lori McKenna. Her last record, Mockingbird Sing, was released nearly three years ago; let’s hope this means a new album is currently in the works.
2. Parker Millsap
Millsap’s self-titled debut, which was released earlier this year, is stunning, full of vivid, well-realized characters straight out of a Southern Gothic short story collection and the occasional banjo string garrote. At only 21, Millsap has a bright, long future in front of him. It’ll be exciting to watch him continue to progress.
1. John Fullbright
Over the past few years, I’ve been lucky enough to catch this spellbinding singer-songwriter in several tiny clubs, but there’s a good chance he won’t be playing those clubs much longer, especially once folks get their ears on his fantastic sophomore record, Songs (out late next month). Here’s a cut from the new album:
- Leeann Ward: Thanks, NM. I like a good pop hook, to be honest. So, maybe I need to try it again.
- Barry Mazor: OK, Jim Z. That changes everything. I surrender.
- Jim Z: to call the Dirty River Boys an "Austin area band" is still incorrect. They are based in El Paso.
- nm: Leeann, you and I often have similar tastes in more-traditional country. And, to my ears, Sam Hunt's voice and lyrics …
- Barry Mazor: Matter of fact, as always--I did. The notes say the album was recorded & mixed by and at "The …
- Roger: Looking forward to picking up the Jamey Johnson Christmas EP - love all of those songs and can't wait for …
- Jim Z: that record was recorded in El Paso. (you could look it up) and other than appearing in Austin once in …
- Leeann Ward: Yes, I can always use more dobro in my life! Thanks for the Phil Leadbetter tip! I haven't been able to …
- Barry Mazor: OK, Jim. The record's more or less out of Austin. But I'm sure they're also good in El Paso...
- Jim Z: Dirty River Boys are from El Paso, Texas.