Ricky Skaggs Named CMHOF Artist-in-Residence; Alabama Music Hall of Fame Schedules Reopening; New Album Releases

Juli Thanki | October 8th, 2013

  • The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum named Ricky Skaggs as its 2013 artist-in-residence. From the press release: Skaggs has chosen to perform two unique shows-each with its own theme and lineup of guest artists. The first show, November 18, will have a country music theme; Ricky’s special guests that night will include Emmylou Harris, Brad Paisley, Peter Frampton, Gordon Kennedy and The Whites. The second show, November 19, will celebrate his bluegrass roots with special guests Alison Krauss, Bruce Hornsby, Martin Hayes and Dennis Cahill, Del McCoury and The Whites.  Both nights will feature Skaggs’ award-winning band, Kentucky Thunder
  • Barry McCloud, journalist, songwriter, producer, photographer, and author of Definitive Country: The Ultimate Encyclopedia of Country Music and its Performers, passed away at the age of 70.
  • Sideman and songwriter X. Lincoln (born Billy Lee Tubb) passed away from liver cancer at the age of 76.
  • Paste premiered “Home,” a track from Whiskey Myers’ next record, Early Morning Shakes, due out February 4.
  • The Alabama Music Hall of Fame is scheduled to reopen October 17. It’s been closed since last November due to decreased attendance and ticket sales, but is able to reopen thanks to a $150,000 state grant.
  • 77-year old Jack Alexander (of Scottish folk duo The Alexander Brothers) was hospitalized after suffering a massive stroke.
  • A new Inside Llewyn Davis trailer has been released. The movie will hit U.S. theaters on December 20.
  • Joe Nichols on his new album, Crickets: “My last couple of years on Show Dog were filled with animosity and bad decisions…On this album, I lost all that junk and went about it in a better mindset. I felt like I needed to do something different. …I’d felt stagnant, and I didn’t want to feel stagnant anymore. I didn’t want to do the same thing, because the same thing wasn’t working. This was going in, getting outside of my comfort zone in terms of doing some songs that didn’t sound like what I’d sung in the past, and finding confidence in something new.”
  • Gord Bamford is donating $100,000 to children’s hospitals across Canada.
  • Taylor Swift, Blake Shelton, Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Little Big Town, Tim McGraw, Keith Urban, and Jason Aldean are the first performers announced for this year’s CMA Awards on November 6.
  • Shannon McNally played “Bohemian Wedding Prayer Song” for Relix.
  • The Pullman Rail Journeys-Old Town School of Folk Music partnership sounds pretty cool: passengers will get to ride on The City of New Orleans and listen to live music in refurbished 1940s railcars.
  • There’s a new Boston Globe article on the play Million Dollar Quartet – and the famous jam session that inspired it. An excerpt: “[Director Eric Schaeffer] and musical supervisor/arranger Chuck Mead say that each time they launch a new production or bring in new cast members, they approach it like they’re putting together a new band. With no pit orchestra or chorus on stage, each of the actors does his own playing and singing. So the key to the success of the show, both men say, is to foster an easy intimacy and playfulness among the four performers so that the evening unfolds like a musical conversation.” 
  • This week’s album releases (if you enjoy the content posted on E145 every week, we’d appreciate it if you’d puchase your music through the affiliate links below. It doesn’t cost you extra, but we get a small percentage that helps keep the lights on):

Patty Griffin Silver Bell

Lindi Ortega Tin Star

Kenny Rogers You Can’t Make Old Friends

Scott Miller Big Big World

Joe Nichols Crickets

Larry Cordle The Cord Files: All-Star Duets

Kimmie Rhodes Covers

Wild Child The Runaround

Heidi Feek The Only

The Coals A Happy Animal

Gord Bamford Country Junkie

Joey + Rory Made to Last

Amos Lee Mountains of Sorrow, Rivers of Song

Gretchen Wilson Christmas in My Heart

Daniel Bachman – Jesus I’m a Sinner

Emily Hearn Promises

  • And a DVD:

Ain’t in It for My Health: A Film about Levon Helm



  1. Michael A.
    October 8, 2013 at 12:16 pm

    Any idea where to find that Larry Cordle duets project? I wasn’t able to find it in iTunes or on Amazon.

    • Juli Thanki
      October 8, 2013 at 12:29 pm

      It wasn’t available on his website as of this morning, either. The last press release I got about the project said that it was due for release today, but I’ll drop the rep a line and see what I can find out.

  2. Luckyoldsun
    October 8, 2013 at 12:36 pm

    Well, it’s certainly getting to be time for Ricky Skaggs–and Randy Travis– to be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame.

    But I’d guess Travis will not be asked to do the “Artist in Residence” gig first–given that one could barely guess at what condition he might show up in. (lol)

  3. Janice Brooks
    October 8, 2013 at 12:38 pm

    The Kimmie Rhoads sounds interseting. Waiting to get my hands on the Larry Cordell. Already programing Lindi Ortega.

  4. Michael A.
    October 8, 2013 at 12:45 pm

    Thanks Juli!

    • Juli Thanki
      October 8, 2013 at 12:50 pm

      Turns out the release got pushed back, but so far there’s no new new official release date. Will keep you guys posted.

  5. Kelly D.
    October 8, 2013 at 12:45 pm

    The Levon Helm doc is on Netflix streaming, too (as is the Punch Bros doc).

  6. Saving Country Music
    October 8, 2013 at 1:07 pm

    The Hall of Fame “Artist In Residence” is usually the precursor to induction. At least that is the way it happened for Kenny Rogers last year. The only thing that may keep both Skaggs and Travis from getting in is they both share the same era on the ballot.

  7. Jack Williams
    October 8, 2013 at 1:26 pm

    I’ve pre-ordered the Lindi Ortega and Patty Griffin albums and am anxiously awaiting their arrival.

    So glad that Patty’s Silver Bell is finally get released.

  8. Barry Mazor
    October 8, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again–and that’s even though it worked out that way for Kenny Rogers: There only link between being asked to be an Artist-in-Residence and being inducted into the Hall is that the broad repertoire and musical chops needed to be asked to be the Resident overlap with being important enough to be considered by those who nominate and vote for Hall inductees–people who have nothing to do with selecting Artists in residence, and visa versa. If residency “does it,” Buddy Miller is in the Country Hall of Fame. Not.

  9. nm
    October 8, 2013 at 3:49 pm

    Hmmmm. Ten years of HoF Artists in Residence. Ten AiRs; thirty inductees to the HoF; four (? I can’t remember whether Kristofferson was already in the HoF when he did his residency — if he was, it’s just three) AiRs who later went on to induction. LOS needs a course in statistics, or at least a dictionary, to help understand what “usual” means.

    OTOH, if lobbying to be the AiR is now going to become something that potential inductees to the Hall do regularly, as a way of burnishing their laurels, I have no objection.

  10. Barry Mazor
    October 8, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    Very sorry to hear about Barry McCloud; I knew that he wasn’t well. He was a gentleman, an ace photographer, and had a serious appreciation of country music, which he was producing in recent years again. He’ll be missed.

  11. Janice Brooks
    October 8, 2013 at 4:48 pm

    Problem with releases after early October is they can get overlooked for year end list and burried under holiday releases.

  12. Luckyoldsun
    October 8, 2013 at 5:31 pm

    I’m not so clueless as to suggest that the “Artist in Residence” gig will get an artist who does not otherwise merit induction (a la Buddy Miller) into the H-o-F. But for an artist who DOES meet the normal criteria (that is, someone who was a major country music star and had a long career)–a la Kenny Rogers–it’s certainly a signal.

    I turned out to be right about Rogers when I said he would get in this year. Skaggs is not quite as overdue as Rogers was–so maybe it will take two more years, rather than one–but he’s at least a contemporary–if not a predecessor–to artists like Strait, Garth and Vince Gill, who are already in.

    I say Skaggs gets inducted next year. I’m giving 2-to-1 odds, if anyone’s betting.

  13. Arlene
    October 8, 2013 at 5:32 pm


    FYI. The link above is to the archive of videos of full sets at this past weekend’s Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival. You can see and hear performances by The Time Jumpers, Mike Farris, Ralph Stanley, Shovels ad Rope, Peter Rowan, Natalie Maines, Tim O’Brien and Darrell Scott, Nicki Bluhm, Dry Branch Fire Squad, Steve Earle, Chris Isaak, Steve Martin and The Steep Canyon Rangers with Edie Brickell, Justin Townes Earle, Bettye LaVette and many, many others. If you want to confirm for yourself that Alison Krauss’s vocal problems are clearly not as great as many of us feared, go to 36:30 of Jerry Douglas’s set to hear her sing “Poison Love,” “You Don’t Know Me,” “Don’t Leave Me This Way” and “Goodbye and So Long To You.”

    It was an amazing weekend of FREE music.

  14. Barry Mazor
    October 8, 2013 at 5:44 pm

    I’d bet good money that Ricky Skaggs is inducted–sooner or later–too. I don’t know when, nor does anybody else at the moment, but I wouldn’t be surprised in the least if it happened relatively soon. He’s one of the biggest sellers and certainly most influential artists of the ’80s not yet in, and that’s not even counting all he’s done since.

  15. TX Music Jim
    October 8, 2013 at 6:10 pm

    Barry I think Ricky’s induction is inevitable and Randy Travis too.
    I am still holding out some hope that Johnny Paycheck may get in some day too.

  16. Rick
    October 8, 2013 at 7:07 pm

    I’m getting a sneaking suspicion that the timing of the “Way Over Yonder” Festival this past weekend on the Santa Monica Pier was designed to coincide with Hardly Strictly so they could share a lot of the same artists! Thanks for the link Arlene. I definitely want to watch the videos from The Time Jumpers, Justin Townes Earle, and Nicki Bluhm! I sure wish Tim O’Brien would shake that Darrell Scott character! (lol)

    Opry Alert! Tonight’s Opry features the Charlie Daniels Band, Clint “Cracker Barrel” Black, Chris “His Corpulence” Young, Angie Johnson(?), Triggerman’s new fave Tyler Farr, Diamond “We Need Autotune!” Rio and Opry Legends. Grade: B
    Schedule: http://www.opry.com/shows/ThisWeek.html

    That musical train trip sounds interesting! I know the Canadians have been doing some musical train tours for awhile now. Speaking of trains, when I was at the LA County Fair at the end of September some Union Pacific restoration experts were working on a giant steam locomotive to get it ready for a return to operational status! That particular steam locomotive model was the largest ever used by Union Pacific and the one at the LA County Fairgrounds has been on static display since it was donated by Union Pacific back in 1962. It was chosen for restoration due to it’s being in the best physical condition of the few that remain of that model in railroad museums. Once the locomotive is restored in Cheyenne Wyoming it will be used in a promotional manner by Union Pacific as it travels around the US. This is the third and final steam locomotive restoration project planned by Union pacific at this time.

  17. BRUCE
    October 8, 2013 at 11:17 pm

    Here’s hoping the new Joe Nichols album does well. A great singer.

  18. bob
    October 9, 2013 at 8:30 am

    I listened to the i-Tunes preview of Crickets. The only thing I found impressive about this new Joe Nichols album is the price – $7.99 for 16 songs. Although I’ve always liked his voice, I’ll pass on this bargain and maybe buy a song or two after a few more listens.

  19. BRUCE
    October 9, 2013 at 9:33 pm

    If you buy just one, the “Footlights” song is one that I think showcases his voice. One of my favorites.

  20. Leeann Ward
    October 10, 2013 at 6:42 am

    Listening to the iTunes clips of the Joe Nichols album, I’m pretty disappointed by it. Even its best songs seem weak in comparison to his past work. I hope he’s just trying out this new direction, but decides not to stick with it in the future. I hate to side with Show Dog, but maybe they were right in Nichols’ case.

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