BONUS TRACKS: The Boss is Back, and So Is Rock Music in Belarus
Photo by Danny Clinch
Oh look! The mail came! It’s Letter to You, the new album announced this week from Bruce Springsteen. We still have to wait until Oct. 23 to hear it, but it feels good to know The Boss (and the E Street Band) is about to take charge in these wild times. Until then, you can listen to the title track here.
Freeman Vines dreamed of a guitar with a particular tone that’s been hard to match in real life. That’s not unusual for a luthier. But Vines’ pursuit for over 50 years has been about far more than music. From found materials that bore witness to a turbulent past in his family’s Eastern North Carolina homeland, he’s hand-carved instruments that speak beyond notes. The new book Hanging Tree Guitars, published by The Bitter Southerner, features a series of Vines’ guitars made from wood believed to be from the site of a lynching, unfolding the story of their creation and their history punctuated by tintype photography by Music Maker Relief Foundation founder Timothy Duffy. Learn more about the book and Vines’ work here.
Rock music in Belarus is having a moment amid political revolution there, and, as the kids say, you love to see it. With the cracks showing in a long run of authoritarianism, musicians are coming out of hiding, and it’s truly a joyful noise. Read all about it here, via the New York Times.
When live music becomes a thing again, it may be harder for US venues and festivals to book acts from other countries. NPR reports that fees for O and P visas, which are required for individual artists and groups who intend to perform in the US, will increase by 50%, bringing the cost of both from $460 to around $700.
If you’re a longtime No Depression reader, there’s a verrrrrrry good chance you had at least one Nickel Creek album on CD back in the day (i.e., the early aughts). Their breakthrough self-titled album came out in 2000, and the band is celebrating the 20th anniversary by reissuing three Nickel Creek albums on “audiophile-quality” vinyl. The double-disc versions of Nickel Creek, This Side, and Why Should the Fire Die? will be released Nov. 6. More info here.
WHAT WE’RE LISTENING TO
Here’s a sampling of the songs, albums, bands, and sounds No Depression staffers have been into this week:
Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion 20th anniversary festival livestreams (now through Sept. 13 on the festival’s Facebook page)
New Moon Jelly Roll Freedom Rockers – “Let’s Work Together”
Waylon Payne – “Sins of the Fathers”
Emily Barker – A Dark Murmuration of Words
Colter Wall – Western Swing & Waltzes and Other Punchy Songs
William Shatner (yeah, you heard us) – “The Thrill Is Gone”