Merle Haggard Would Rather Work and Stay Skinny
- Randy Lewis has a great interview with Merle Haggard over at the L.A. Times.
Even more than his voluminous recordings, publishing royalties from his extensive trove of country songs assure him and his family financial stability for the rest of his life.
“I make enough off my royalties that I could sit on my ass and get fat,” he says with a laugh. “But I’d rather keep working and stay skinny.”
It’s long, but there’s some good stuff. It’s worth the read.
- If you’re wondering if the new Bob Wills Tiffany Transcriptions 10-disc box set is worth the price, Eric Banister says if you’re a fan of Bob Wills or Western Swing, the answer is a “resounding yes!”
- Patty Loveless reminisces with Craig Shelburne about 10 Grammy-winning country classics.
“Harper Valley PTA,” Jeannie C. Riley
Best Country Vocal Performance, Female — 1968
I used to do this song, as well, when I was a kid. And I wore the boots and the short dress when the miniskirts were popular. I think it’s a great story, and I love story songs, just like Dolly’s “Coat of Many Colors.” I love story songs, and I thought it was a great story song. And Jeannie C. Riley, it was huge for her. Unbelievable! It changed everything for her.
- Straight from the horse’s mouth, Daytrotter brings us three unreleased songs from Joe Pug.
- Dailey & Vincent have planned a heavy schedule of tour dates and appearances to promote their upcoming album, Brothers from Different Mothers, which is set to land on March 31. The songs include a couple of Statler Brothers cuts and “You Oughta Be Here With Me” by the one and only Roger Miller.
New releases for the week of February 3, 2009 include:
Gretchen Peters with Tom Russell – One to the Heart, One to the Head
- Dierks Bentley and his marketing people sure know how to keep his name in the news. Only for today, his new album, Feel That Fire, is available at Amazon as a digital download for $3.99. Instant gratification and it’s light on the pocketbook; that’s what I like to see. (If you read the county music blogs, it’ll be hard to miss, so pick your favorite one and click the link.)
- And if you haven’t had a chance to check out Dierks’ bio yet, he says he changed his approach to the recording process: “…do it in more of a rock and roll, or an old outlaw kind of country way. Use your guys; go in the studio; take the clock off the wall.” Has he been attending Kenny Chesney’s cheesy motivational speeches?
Here’s another snippet in an interview over at The Boot:
You’ve managed to do what a lot of artists cannot — stay true to traditional country music while keeping it cool and current. How do you find that balance?
One word: authentic. A lot of artists come to Nashville. I feel like I am Nashville…
- Wynonna thinks the next generation of country music listeners needs to discover legends like Merle Haggard, Hank Williams, and Tammy Wynette, three artists she covered on her new album. Readers in the forum have mixed opinions on the results.
A lot of these whippersnappers today, they probably don’t know much about him. And I just want to get them in a headlock and say, ‘Come with me for a week,’ and show them the way of where we’ve come from.”
- Critical darling Jamey Johnson will open a few shows for The 9513′s Country Artist of the Year, Willie Nelson, in March. It looks like they’ll mostly visit Florida with a stop in South Carolina and one in M-I-S-S-I-S-S-I-P-P-I. Johnson will also be singing his latest single, “High Cost of Living,” on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno this Thursday.
- Lest you think Randy Houser is all work and no play, go listen to his LOL. Very infectious!
- Be sure to check in tomorrow as we unveil the new class of Country Music Hall of Fame inductees. They’ll will be chosen from the follow groups: Recording/Touring musician active prior to 1980, Performer whose career reached national prominence between WWII and 1975, and Performer whose career reached national prominence after 1975.
- UPDATE: Today is the 50th anniversary of “The Day the Music Died.” It was half a century ago that a plane crash took the lives of Buddy Holly, the Big Bopper, and Richie Valens. Barry Mazor has an article over on The Wall Street Journal about Buddy Holly’s still-living legacy.
- bob: Thanks Barry. Just reserved the Adam Gussow book. Sounds interesting.
- Barry Mazor: It may be over-stated, in arriving at practically a single explanation of everything, but Adam Gussow's book on lynching and …
- Leeann: Wow! Heavy topic and horrifying indeed! "Beer for My Horses" was all fun and games until that reference, I'll have …
- Barry Mazor: Everything else aside, the way that reporter fills us in, with must-have, pointless generational snark included, about who this "Little …
- luckyoldsun: "The Night The Lights Went Out in Georgia" seems to be about a lynching--even if there's something about a judge …
- Arlene: Sorry. I meant to give the link for "Supper Time." http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sZ58Kfe41kI
- Arlene: Another song sung by Ethel Waters: Irving Berlin's "Supper Time"
- bob: Powerful songs. I read the book "A Lynching in the Heartland" by James H. Madison about a dozen years ago. …
- Ron: Sky Above, Mud Below by Tom Russell is another.
- Jack Williams: Another Othis Taylor song from White African is "My Soul's in Louisiana."