Tompall Glaser Passes Away; Noam Pikelny Salutes Bluegrass Greats on New Concept Album; Will Hoge Announces Fall Tour

Juli Thanki | August 14th, 2013

  • Out October 1 on Compass Records: Noam Pikelny Plays Kenny Baker Plays Bill Monroe. From the press release: Baker’s fiddle brought an elegant and refined voice to Monroe’s music and Pikelny precisely transposes Baker’s versions to the banjo, note-for-note, track-by-track. It is the first bluegrass record that remakes an entire album in sequence, though never drifting into an exercise in musical impersonation; instead Pikelny uses the Monroe instrumentals as blueprints and springboards for his own improvisations and those of his band.
  • Jewly Hight interviewed Jim Ed Brown, who recently celebrated his 50th year as an Opry member.
  • Will Hoge will kick off his fall tour October 11 in Dallas. Sunny Sweeney is scheduled to join him for a few dates.
  • The Horse’s Ha is a “freak folk” duo that makes music for “feral hipsters…circus folk and bike messengers.” So if you’re in that demographic, check out Noah Berlatsky’s piece on the band and listen to a few tunes here.
  • The Band Perry, Cassadee Pope, and Big & Rich are among the acts who’ll perform next month at Mission Gratitude, a benefit show for the Red Sox’s Home Base program, which helps vets suffering from traumatic brain injuries and PTSD.
  • Mandolin player Cory Piatt has joined Sleepy Man Banjo Boys.
  • John “Uncle Jesse” Stamos joined Willie Nelson for the country legend’s set at Outside Lands last weekend.
  • Herpreet Kaur Grewal conducted a fine interview with Gretchen Peters. An excerpt: When I got my big publishing deal after I’d had a hit or two, I asked the head of the publishing company – who was a woman which was really unusual – why she wanted me and she said ‘we need more women writers’. I remember thinking ‘am I ever just going to be a writer, not a woman writer?’ No one ever talks about men writers. But I accepted that and thought that’s why they think they want me, but I will prove to them why they really want me.  There was definitely the reality that female artists are far more judged on the way they look than male artists are especially back when I first got my record deal (in 1995). There were a lot of male artists that were being signed to record labels then that looked like the guy who worked on your dad’s farm. They were not pretty boys but that was not a factor. But for female artists it was different. Shortly after my first record came out, Shania Twain blew the whole country scene open, and it shifted even more towards that ethic. It’s a shame, it’s the most pervasive thing that female artists have to face: that they are going to be judged that way and not on their songs, singing or performance. 
  • On Saturday, Reba sat for a 90-minute interview with the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum’s Michael McCall; CMT and both covered the event.
  • The nominees for this year’s IBMA Awards will be announced at 6 p.m. Eastern tonight before a grasscentric Music City Roots show. Stream here.


  1. Rick
    August 14, 2013 at 7:57 pm

    Music City Roots Alert! (Better late than never…) Tonight’s MCR is one of their all too infrequent bluegrass shows that always kick butt! Featured artists include: The Steeldrivers, Russell Moore and 3rd Tyme Out, Donna Ulisse, Flatt Lonesome, and noodlegrass master Sam Bush. There is an Opry show as well, but with MCR’s lineup tonight, who cares? (lol)
    MCR Link:

    I’m glad to see Sunny Sweeney will be with Will Hoge and is no longer opening gigs for the Mainstream AirHead Country artists I couldn’t care less about. I’ll have to see if they are coming anywhere near Los Angeles. Go Sunny!
    (PS – Her new album recording sessions are humming along and should be completed soon. I guess PledgeMusic is going to charge me that $ 25 after all! lol)

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