WSM Radio Tower Turns 80; Hee Haw Co-Creator Passes Away; Lambert and Lumineers Go Platinum

Juli Thanki | November 9th, 2012

  • The iconic WSM radio tower turns 80. The station is celebrating tomorrow with an open house at the tower.
  • Chet Flippo’s new Nashville Skyline column is all about artists he thinks are deserving of Hall of Fame induction, including Ray Charles, Johnny Horton, and Dottie West. Who’s on your list?
  • There’s a new, free exhibit at the Tennessee State Museum called “The Guitar: An American Love Story.” The Tennessean has info and a photo gallery.
  • Michael Berick of The Bluegrass Situation interviewed Corb Lund.
  • The Deadly Gentlemen, currently touring in Alaska, were featured in the Daily News-Miner:  The band is fronted by Dr. Greg Liszt, a banjo player with a doctorate from MIT who has toured with Bruce Springsteen and is a member of Crooked Still. The Deadly Gentlemen started as an experimental spoken word bluegrass band, but its latest album, “Carry Me to Home” consists of traditional folk songs taken to extremes. Bluegrass may be an ever-evolving genre, but The Deadly Gentlemen are way ahead of the curve.
  • The Americana Honors and Awards Ceremony episode of Austin City Limits ends with a performance of “The Weight” featuring Bonnie Raitt, Emmylou Harris, and more. Watch that clip here.
  • Speaking of Raitt, in this Performing Songwriter feature, John Prine, Richard Thompson, Mike Reid, Allen Shamblin and others share how Raitt has affected their lives.
  • American Songwriter’s free, downloadable November sampler includes cuts from Chris Knight, The Mavericks, and more.
  • Miranda Lambert’s “Over You,” The Lumineers’ “Ho Hey,” Taylor Swift’s “Fearless,” and Kenny Chesney’s “Come Over” have all been certified platinum.
  • Kenny Chesney has announced his No Shoes Nation Tour, which will hit stadiums in 2013. Kacey Musgraves and The Eli Young Band will open all shows; Zac Brown Band and Eric Church will play select dates.
  1. Barry Mazor
    November 9, 2012 at 11:48 am

    I’m sure that Dottie West will be considered in the Veterans era nominations, and might be in there soon, but I’d suggest that it’s also time to consider Tanya Tucker in the same category. I agree with most f the names Chet raises. And I still want to see the Maddox Brothers and Rose in there, whenever and however..

  2. J.R. Journey
    November 9, 2012 at 1:32 pm

    Tanya Tucker is at the top of my list of should-be future Hall of Famers, just ahead of Ronnie Milsap. In the Modern Era, I’d say Randy Travis could (and should) be next. Ditto for Ricky Skaggs. Also, the past decade or so has seen a lot more producers and label executives going in the Hall – Sam Phillips, Ken Nelson, Don Law, Jim Fogelsong – and I’d rank Jimmy Bowen more influential than any of those guys save for maybe Phillips in shaping modern Music Row. After reading Bowen’s book (Rough Mix – it’s fascinating) and other accounts of his handling of the myriad labels he headed over the years, I’d say he’s a longshot with voters. People either love him or hate him and my guess is more of the latter are still selecting the nominees. Bowen may have to wait another generation.

  3. Arlene
    November 9, 2012 at 2:53 pm

    Doc Watson. And I know there is a separate HOF for bluegrass artists but also, the Stanley Brothers and/or Ralph Stanley. (There’s a separate Hall of Fame for songwriters too but a number of songwriters are also in the Country Music Hall of Fame.)

  4. Rick
    November 9, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    Last Minute Opry Alert! Tonight’s Opry will feature Sunny Sweeney (whose profile has been way too low lately), The Grascals, Kathy Mattea, Vince Gill, and The Time Jupmers. Grade: A!

    Barry, its time to start that “Maddox Brothers & Rose in the CMHOF” online petition! If California had its own CCMHOF, I’d expect Rose and her brothers to be the first inductees.

    Gosh, Kacey Musgraves opening on a Kenny Chesney tour this early in her career? Yikes! That gal must have friends in high places! Go Kacey!

    Ummm, who, or what in the hell are the Lumineers? I’m even more out of touch than I thought…

  5. timeo
    November 12, 2012 at 1:47 pm

    I’ve never understood “Ray Charles in the CMHOF” argument. He recorded very few country sides and had limited chart success. His most famed country albums — the two “Modern Sounds in Country & Western” alubms — were influenced BY country music, not major influencers of country. To me, it would be akin to putting Bob Dylan in the HOF.

    As for who I’d like to see: Tanya Tucker definitely. Jerry Reed deserves credit, both for nearly two decades of hits and sessionwork. I have no objections to Dottie West, nor for that matter, for her duet partner Kenny Rogers (though I’m by no means a Kenny Rogers fan). Similarly, though not an Oak Ridge Boys fan, their omission seems glaring at this point. Charlie Daniels persona bugs me, but he belongs. Skeeter Davis and Wanda Jackson for their tenacity. Hank Cochran…how is he not in there??

  6. timeo
    November 12, 2012 at 1:49 pm

    D’oh: How could I forget? Bobby Bare..

  7. Barry Mazor
    November 12, 2012 at 3:15 pm

    Timeo, that’s simply wrong about the Modern Sounds influence–which was large, in the style of record production and arrangements in the Nashville Sound era that followed the Charles’ albums… Their success also changed country’s thinking about how broadly it could reach people.. The Country Hall, in fact, had numerous panels and also exhibit space showing this several years a, when Ray Charles and Country was the main exhibit.. And it’s also doubtful that artists such as Charlie Rich and Ronnie Milsap, for two, could have had the sorts of country careers they did without Ray’s records coming first.

  8. Jon
    November 12, 2012 at 4:13 pm

    Doesn’t the Nashville Sound era predate, rather than follow, the Charles albums? I mean, I can see them as extending certain aspects of it, but I’m less sure about calling them very influential on the style of production and arrangements. The outreach part, sure, and also the influence on artists like Rich and Milsap.

  9. Barry Mazor
    November 12, 2012 at 6:03 pm

    Well, OK Jon, it had indeed begun in the 50s–and was heavily influenced then by such R&B sounds as records like Ivory Joe Hunter’s “Since I Met You baby” (1956)..but it seems fair to say that Charles’ production added importantly to the ways strings, horns and choral vocal groups could interact, how the songs could be arranged to come off as more sophisticated, and was certainly a step in the evolution from the early Nashville Sound to the Countrypolitan variation..the Billy Sherrills and Buddy Killens etc from Alabama were all heavily influenced by those Ray records, and said so.

    So there’s a more detailed comment than the first one

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