It’s easy, with the perpetual slow-trickle arrival of new country songs, singles and stars, to become fixated on the brand new and of-the-moment—as some publications, writers and fans do. Yet some level of recognizable continuity has been a basic element of the music from its beginnings. In country music, themes and sounds and performers are […]
Today is the 70th anniversary of D-Day, one of the most monumental events in history; but for this Friday Five, we’re going to go back a bit further in time: 2014 also marks the 100th anniversary of the beginning of World War I. Here are five songs that address the “war to end all wars.” […]
Brad Paisley Plays Surprise Show in Afghanistan; Brain Implant Creates Johnny Cash Fan; Album Releases
Herb Jeffries, who starred in several black Westerns as a singing cowboy, sang with Duke Ellington, and released his own jazz albums, passed away on Sunday. He was believed to be 100 years old. Bucky Doster, a trombone player who toured with Glen Campbell and recorded with Johnny Cash and Brenda Lee, passed away last […]
Events and releases have conspired to put the Carter Family front and center for me through this past month. It’s not the iconic, commonly sentimentalized version of them that’s been brought into fresh focus, though—the domesticated diamonds in the rough, forever simple, down home in their Clinch Mountain “fold”— but the sometimes complicated, breathing, talented […]
Beauty Is…, Ray Price’s beautiful new album, was recorded only a few months before he died—and in the weeks just following his learning definitively that he was going to. When the project was completed, the singer told Janie Price, his wife of more than forty years, that he had made it especially for her. As […]
Merle Haggard marked a birthday Sunday, his 77th. He celebrated the occasion with an appearance on CBS’s Academy of Country Music awards show, where George Strait and Miranda Lambert performed a medley of his hits and where Haggard was presented with something called the Crystal Milestone Award by Garth Brooks, one of its former honorees. […]
When you’re in the middle of a lively, exciting music scene, it tends to seem natural, inevitable, and bound to last. And then time happens. The scene and the music it thrived around evolve or fade away; what was exciting about them, how they seemed to matter, and, eventually, what they even were become points […]
There’s a new marker honoring Jimmie Rodgers in Asheville, North Carolina. Kellie Pickler’s next album, The Woman I Am, comes out November 12. (via press release) Don Schlitz, The Mavericks, and Lady Antebellum have been added to the lineup for tomorrow’s ACM Honors. Jens Kruger won the 2013 Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Banjo […]
Brad Paisley Gives Google Talk; Stream Brian Wright, Shelby Lynne Songs; Wide Open Bluegrass Schedule Announced
Brad Paisley recently participated in the Talks at Google series. Listen to his 30-minute session here. Remember the time Johnny Cash played a murderer on Columbo? Check out Shelby Lynne’s “Brother, Where Are You” from the benefit compilation Pennies from Heaven. The Blue Ridge Outdoors September Trail Mix (download it for free here) includes songs […]
Labels large and small have opted for highly seasonal release calendars that have a slew of new records coming out between mid-August and mid-September, like school lunchboxes. So I’m taking this column to offer some quick views and previews of several handfuls I’ve found notable. (“CDs” doesn’t nail it any more, and “releases” is giving […]
- luckyoldsun: Nobody can do Karaoke George Jones like Kershaw!
- Bruce: LW, Don't apologize for your Bryant comment. You were more gracious than I would have been.
- Bruce: My vote is for Marty Stuart for his exhaustive body of work that is directional yet diversified.
- Leeann: Dang! Let me write my above sentence again!: Kelley MicKwee’s album is sounding good so far too. I really like “Beautiful …
- paul w dennis: The Kershaw album is really noteworthy for its song selections. Other than "I'll Share My World With You", it omits …
- Leeann: The Sammy Kershaw tribute to George Jones is pretty good on first listen. Of course, Sammy's no George, but their …
- Jeremy Dylan: I did a podcast on Joni Mitchell's BLUE album recently and was wondering if there was a good bio of …
- Leeann Ward: Well, that was a mighty unnecessarily flippant comment I just made there and the better angels of my nature make …
- Leeann Ward: As for me, I'd realize I'd written a crappy song if Luke Bryan ended up being the one who wanted …
- luckyoldsun: You say Marx is very gracious--again implying that he should feel aggrieved. Well, apparently, he DOESN'T feel aggrieved--He feels gratitude …