Garth Brooks Is Officially Unretired; Opry Planning Wednesday Night Show; Sunny Sweeney’s New Demo
- A newly unretired Garth Brooks performed the first of his Vegas shows this weekend. The Los Angeles Times and USA Today have the details.
Do we really believe it was as much of a struggle as Brooks let on to honor requests for deep catalog material such as “Mr. Midnight”? Given the occasional flub, he was nothing if not sincere. When one woman shouted for “The Change,” he briefly fiddled with his guitar before conceding, “No, I can’t play it” — then set the instrument aside and delivered a couple of verses a cappella.
- Eleven Hundred Springs posted behind-the-scenes footage of their crazy life.
- Ralph Stanley packed the Birchmere on Saturday, but Post Rock’s Dave McKenna says the overabundance of gray hair is cause for concern about the commercial half-life of bluegrass.
- Guit-steel progenitor Junior Brown isn’t fond of today’s country musicians:
“They’ve ruined it. They’ve hung themselves over and over again. There’s no credibility left in country music,” Brown says by phone from his Oklahoma residence. “There’s no more honesty in it. It’s like some really bad heavy metal that couldn’t make it.”
- Country Universe kicked off a countdown of the 201 greatest singles of the decade.
- No Depression’s Kim Ruehl shared her list of the top 20 albums of 2009 and Grant Alden ruminated on the albums that will best help him remember the closing decade.
- The Opry is looking into adding a Wednesday night show next summer.
- Sunny Sweeney posted a demo of one of her new songs to MySpace. Look for “Helluva Heart.”
- The DC9 at Night music blog muses that if 2009’s best alt-country proves anything, it’s that yes, Willie Nelson is still a badass. Those Justin Townes Earle and Guy Clark guys aren’t bad themselves.
- My Kind of Country’s Occasional Hope listed her top 10 singles of 2009.
- Paste magazine’s Rachael Maddux attended her first Billy Joe Shaver concert and believes she witnessed the oldest living punk in America.
- Recommend 10 tracks from 2009.
If you’re not in the Christmas spirit yet, then you haven’t watched Music Fog’s recent recording of John Cowan performing “I’ll Be Home For Christmas”:
- luckyoldsun: Jim Z-- I get the feeling Barry was this close to calling you what Kinky Friedman called his guy from El …
- 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...