For those who believe real country music has fled Nashville, the recent CMA Awards would do little to ease your notion. Bombast, smoke, lasers and lots of the arena rock are the anti-thesis of steel-soaked, fiddle-laced songs built on melody, submerged in big emotions and turned with hooks that can’t be forgotten.
But for the true believers and in-the-knowers, a handful of insiders and old school players have conjured 45 RPM, a last Wednesday of every month celebration of classic…
“So here I am on my stool tonight Yeah, I’m practicing for the afterlife, Cause when I’m nothing but a pile of bones I’m gonna come back as a country song.”
“I meet a lot of teenagers,” Alan Jackson says. “It’s surprising how many like real classic country music… They go out and find it, even if they can’t hear it on the radio. They know.” He pauses for a moment, half- laughs. He’s been here before.
Marty Stuart's music is everything country should be.
The minute I put his just-released album "Tear the Woodpile Down" into my player, I felt as if I had come home. There's something about the instrumentation -- especially the lush steel guitar, banjo and of course Stuart's crisp, yet twangy emotion-laden vocals, that touched my heart.
I'm not a truck driver, don't regularly have lonely times, and am not searching for love, so why is it that I could easily imagine…
Very exciting music week last week, for sure. Topped off by the complete joy that is seeing Mr. Kris Kristofferson play live. If you've been introduced to me, you already know that he is my favorite. Always has been. So it was that I went off to the Greek Theater with my fellow Kris lover, Sweet D, for our third KK show together (!), this time in an evening with both Kris and Merle Haggard playing… Continue
A review of the new Brooklyncountry.com CD sampler by Neville Elder
When I was kid stuck out in a small farming town in Somerset (that’s England y’all ). I discovered country music’s new wave watching ‘The Old Grey Whistle Test’ on the BBC. It was my own compilation record. I remember watching ‘Lone Justice’, ‘…
I've been hearing rumors that Guy Clark isn't in the best of health. True or not, he will be appearing in the Texas area, Louisiana, Montana and all the way up north to Canada. One of the great Texas songwriters and best friend of the late Townes Van Zandt, Clark's influence on country music is prolific.
I got to my seat a little later than I would have liked for last night’s Merle Haggard & Kris Kristofferson show. The two legends are on tour together, swapping stories and songs in an intimate stage setting in theaters.
I arrived in the middle of the first song of the night, Kristofferson’s “Shipwrecked in the 80’s”, which he dedicated mid-song to the veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. But what really tripped me up was the quality of Kristofferson’s voice.…
Brooks & Dunn w Merle Haggard
Blossom Music Center, Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio
August 26, 2010
Brooks & Dunn came to represent the machined honky tonk of the post-Garth Brooks country explosion as much as any act that emerged in the ‘90s. But what that oversimplication missed as two men – both in their 30s when the record deal came – who had punched it out in icehouses, chicken-wire protected honky tonks and the occasional dance halls on their way to fame and… Continue
I made this for you
By The Mountains and The Trees
Review by Doug Heselgrave
The Mountains and the Trees is really a young musician named Jon James who hails from Newfoundland’s Atlantic coast. A talented guitar player who has been blessed with a set of pipes that would send a seraphim into a fit of pique and jealousy, James plays the kind of music I’d want my kids to listen to if they ever moved and went off to… Continue
Merle Haggard's newest CD in 5 years is a refreshing acoustic affair with a touch of pedal steel and some electric pickin'. I had to fight to get a finished copy, but it was well worth the fight. Haggard is a smart man sticking with what is tried and true. His band, The Strangers accompany him, in his studio, the California "Shade Tree Manor Studio". Reggie Young helps out on guitar, with Rob Ickes on Dobro.
Every song is a Hag written affair, except for one. Some of the songs have a… Continue
Added by Jim Moulton on May 5, 2010 at 1:00am —
“When I think of Peter Wolf I always remember the Portuguese proverb: ‘Never say you will not drink from that glass again.’ ” – Faye Dunaway, Academy Award-winning actress and Wolf’s former wife, in her 1995 autobiography, Looking for Gatsby
“You never say never.”– Peter Wolf
Same subject (L-O-V-E). Same sorrowful scenario (L-O-S-T). Totally different playing partners.
So on February 16th, there will be a tribute record released by the Preservation Hall Jazz Band with folks like, Tom Waits, Andrew Bird, Merle Haggard, Blind Boys Of Alabama and many more. It is moments like this that make me feel that music is alive and well. Here is the press release...
A LANDMARK COLLABORATION BRINGING TOGETHER LEGENDARY AND EMERGING
ARTISTS INCLUDING PETE SEEGER, TOM WAITS, MERLE HAGGARD, JIM JAMES,
ANDREW BIRD AND MORE FOR A CELEBRATION OF NEW ORLEANS…Continue
Added by Gar on February 5, 2010 at 2:38pm —
Driving out to the garden this afternoon, dodging storms and squishing Japanese beetles (actually, I dump 'em in water and feed 'em to the chickens, which is, at least, sport...or recycling), I was reminded of a conceit which emerged when Andy McLenon and I were writing about Merle Haggard some years back.
And it is this: Merle Haggard is the greatest living American songwriter.
Discuss. Argue. Have fun.
But consider this: He is and always has been more than… Continue