Miranda Lambert Kisses Haggard; Tom Russell – Best Album of the Year?; Keen Listening Party
- Peter Cooper recapped last night’s ACM Honors, which seemed to be the kind of event that should be televised in the place of the regular ACM Awards.
If Williams had attended, he probably would have enjoyed the musical performances, which included medleys of his hits by Jamey Johnson and The Grascals and a smashing version of his “(I Don’t Have) Anymore Love Songs” by Lambert.
Other highlights included guitar heroics from Brent Mason and Steve Wariner in the Reed segment; Blake Shelton’s version of “The Gambler” during the Rogers tribute; Underwood’s soaring, Travis-penned “I Told You So”; Jim Lauderdale’s medley of three Howard songs; and Vince Gill’s take on Haggard’s ballad “Holding Things Together.”
- @Miranda_Lambert: Tonight was the biggest night of my life… I kissed Merle on the cheek. Wow.
- Nathan Rabin returned to his Nashville or Bust column this week with an entry on Lefty Frizzell.
- The best record of the year? Ninebullets.net nominates Tom Russell‘s Blood and Candle Smoke.
- As highlighted in Holly Gleason’s review, Kris Kristofferson explains his new record best:
Opening Closer to the Bone, the sea-salt-weathered baritone confesses with the anything-but-ironic line, “Ain’t it kinda funny, ain’t it just the way though/Ain’t you getting better as you’re running out of time…,” and sets his most tender revelations in proper context.
- The Bluegrass Blog has a few song samples from the upcoming Del McCoury Band (Oct. 27) album Family Circle.
- After attending this year’s Americana Music Festival, No Depression’s Grant Alden thinks he understands why Mandy Barnett never made it bigger than she did. He comments on other artists as well (Sam Baker, Ashley Cleveland, J.D. Souther, Elizabeth Cook), and two panels he attended; one about leveraging the internet and the other about the death of criticism. The discussion continues in the comments (with a side story about Vince Gill losing his cool), so don’t miss those.
- NPR’s Ken Tucker on the new John Fogerty album:
Ultimately, Blue Ridge Rangers Rides Again is John Fogerty’s version of a party album, which — for all its smiley cheerfulness centers on its creator’s intensity. Perhaps that’s because as a once-and-future control-freak, Forgerty derives pleasure from bearing down hard on light music. In Blue Ridge Rangers Rides Again, he demonstrates that pleasure can bear the weight of discipline and history.
- CMT and the Carter Twins parted ways. In more depressing news, The 9513 now has a tag for Carter Twins.
- PopMatters’ Stuart Henderson on Guy Clark‘s Somedays the Song Writes You: “…this is Clark at his tightest, at his whipsmart best; this may be his late-period masterpiece, folks.”
- Big & Rich will release Big & Rich: Greatest Hits on Sept. 29.
- Say something nice about Patty Loveless at Country Universe and you could win one of seven copies of her new record, Mountain Soul II. Sounds like a pretty good deal.
- Robbie Fulks on Levon Helm’s Electric Dirt: “More ambitiously orchestrated and tonally varying than his last record, and pure idiot fun to listen to.”
- The Gobblers Knob thinks you should check out Taker Easy, the recent album from Jacksonville, Florida’s The Takers (MySpace).
- Not even George Strait could escape the farcery of Farce the Music’s batch of September honest album covers.
- NPR has two new Mountain Stage performances: one from Dave Alvin & The Guilty Women and the other from Ben Kweller.
- A man accused of stalking Jewel was arrested on the singer-songwriter’s ranch last week, claims he was on a mission from God.
- Music Fog: John Arthur Martinez – “Closer To My Dream”
- Jim Fusilli confesses that it’s probably a fool’s mission to define Americana, but try he does in his latest article for The Wall Street Journal:
Cloying, cartoonish corporate country is treated as the enemy in the halls of Americana. Now and then, you would swear the Americana movement is scheming to wrest back the soul of country and restore its former partnership with folk, blues, old-time rock ‘n’ roll and swing. Americana, said the mandolin player Sam Bush, “isn’t based around trends. It’s not based on haircuts. It’s based on songs from the heart.”
Jim Lauderdale takes his own stab at defining Americana music in this video interview with The 9513’s Pierce Greenberg:
- Steve Wariner will be inducted into the National Thumbpickers Hall of Fame on Friday.
- Things that make you go ‘hmmm': WISHTV.com is reporting that the Little Nashville Opry that burned down on Saturday was not the first fire to occur at a Little Nashville Property. Three others have been reported in the past, and the company co-owner, Jim Bowyer, has lost his home to fire — twice.
- We have winners! Congrats to Sabrina5000, Steve M., and Mike Traugott for scoring a copy of the new Ricky Skaggs solo record, Songs My Dad Loved. We’ll be in touch shortly to get your contact info.
- Bluegrass veteran Chris Jones has released a new album (although I can’t find the release date). From the press release:
The title track, “Cloud of Dust,” another song penned by Jones, is a banjo-driven tune with an optimistic take on love gone wrong, sure to please both the traditional and contemporary bluegrass enthusiast. While this song is left in the more-than-capable hands of the Night Drivers, other guests, including Jeremy Garrett of the Infamous Stringdusters, Shawn Lane of Blue Highway, Mike Witcher of the Missy Raines Band, can be heard on some of the other tracks.
- Could there be an exclusive listening party for the new Robert Earl Keen album The Rose Hotel? Yup, there could be.
- 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...