Tuesday, February 17th, 2015 was the time, and the beautiful Paramount Theatre in downtown Austin was the place for the 2nd Annual Ameripolitan Music Awards. Socialites and artists from all over the United States, and a few from foreign lands made their way to the Texas capitol for the festivities.
Once again the Ameripolitan Awards, founded by Dale Watson, and championed by many hard working individuals and artists wanting to shine a spotlight on under-appreciated but highly-deserving roots music, was a rousing success. However one oversight that was completely predictable, and highly inappropriate was the appointment once again of SiriusXM DJ Mojo Nixon as the Master of Ceremonies.
I’ve received more requests to comment on Cody Johnson’s music in 2014 than any other artist. Meanwhile my status of staying mum on him has caused some to question whether I actually care about country music, others to question the legitimacy of of flying the “Saving Country Music” banner, and still others have come out saying point blank Saving Country Music must be a fraud for not discussing the Texas singer.
Astounding and acclaimed country music vocalist Dawn Sears, known for being one of the members of the Western Swing outfit The Time Jumpers, a frequent collaborator and backup singer for fellow Time Jumper Vince Gill, and a noted solo artist releasing multiple albums on her own, died of lung Cancer on Thursday, December 11th. She was 53-years-old.
This isn’t some beer league bar band made up of 2nd shifters from the machinist union out on a Friday night to give the jukebox a spell, this is Whitey Morgan & the 78’s dammit—the most wild-eyed honky tonk hard-stomping band ever to put their boots through a bass drum head. And to have a high quality rig on site recording it all in their home confines of The Machine Shop of Flint, Michigan…
Fans of the hard driving, honky tonkin’ throwback country band of the new generation known as Whitey Morgan & the 78’s have been waiting a very long time to hear something new since the release of their self-titled Bloodshot Records debut in 2010, and the floodgates are about to open, beginning with the long-awaited release of “Born, Raised & LIVE from Flint.”
If you’re looking for a brand of country music that is country and country only, not country rock, country punk, “evolved” country, alt-country or Americana, then J.P. Harris & The Tough Choices just might be right in your wheelhouse. J.P. lets it be known he’d rather you leave your hyphenated country labels and long-winded qualifiers clear of what he does.
Ameripolitan, Bandit Brand, Bandit Town, Buck Owens, Chance McCoy, Dale Watson, Home Is Where The Hurt Is, Joe Fletcher, Junior Brown, Keep It Country Festival, Merle Haggard, Miss Lonely Hearts, Nikki Lane, Old Crow Medicine Show, Red Simpson, Sam Outlaw, Whitey Morgan & The 78's
This isn’t an album of truckin’ songs that you sit back and listen to nostalgically, this thing takes a big arm cocked at a 90-degree angle like it’s about to give a hearty yank of the air horn, and instead grabs you by the gruff of your neck and pulls you right up into the cab of a serious diesel machine for one sensational ride. It might be one of the best Dale Watson albums to date.
Dale Watson released his first album of exclusively truckin’-inspired songs in 1998 called The Truckin’ Sessions. The album became a favorite amongst devoted Dale Watson fans over the years, which inspired Dale to release a second installment The Truckin’ Sessions, Vol. 2 in 2009. Now Dale aims to make it a perfect three by releasing yet another 14-song volume of truckin’ songs…
No matter how much they attempt to exile the spirit of true country music or how much it’s denied shelter by the gatekeepers of mainstream music, it will always find a home and a harbor in the hearts of real country fans, no matter who they are, or where they dwell. It may be people from the American South, born and raised in the same dirt that the sound originated from.
Mike and the Moonpies, a staple of the Austin Honky Tonk circuit, had their van , trailer, instruments, and gear all stolen sometime Sunday morning, May 11th in Dallas. Folks are being asked to keep a lookout for the gear (list & pictures below), and a fund has been set up for folks who want to help the band get back on their feet.
Don’t take it that Jackson Taylor & The Sinners are like the sisters of the poor. They’ve had their days in the sun, and it certainly must be a proud achievement for them to be featured a part of the prestigious, critically-acclaimed, world-renown, and long-running album series called Live At Billy Bob’s Texas right beside names like Willie Nelson, David Allan Coe, Billy Joe Shaver.
As if Dale Watson didn’t already have enough on his plate, it has been announced that he will be co-starring in a movie called Yellow Rose that is currently in casting and pre-production. Dale will also be contributing original music to the soundtrack of the film. Watson is slotted to play Jimmy Redburn, a washed up country legend that befriends a 15-year-old Filipina-American runaway….
You can’t go long talking about badasses in country music without bringing up the one, the only Billy Joe Shaver. Though he may have never received the recognition of Willie, Waylon, or even Coe or Paycheck, his influence is arguably just important. When you have Elvis cutting one of your songs, Willie Nelson calling you his favorite songwriter, have Bob Dylan name dropping you…
Billy Joe Shaver, Bob Dylan, Dale Watson, Dickey Betts, Dwight Yoakam, Eddie Shaver, Elvis, Green Gables, Guy Clark, Honky Tonk Heroes, Kris Kristofferson, Squidbillies, The Allman Brothers, The Eagles, Waylon Jennings, Whitey Morgan, Willie Nelson
Tuesday, February 18th was the inaugural Ameripolitan Music Awards at the Wyndham Garden Hotel in Austin, TX. To see a complete list of winners, a play by play account of the night, and more pictures, please check out the 2014 Ameripolitan Awards LIVE Blog. Here are some photographs of the night from photographer C. C. Ekström of the excellent website Almost Out Of Gas.
2014, Ameripolitan, Ameripolitan Music Awards, Big Sandy, Dale Watson, Dawn Sears, Earl Poole Ball, Elizabeth Cook, James Hand, Jason Roberts, Jim Heath, Johnny Bush, Mike Bernal, Mojo Nixon, Pearls Mahone, Redd Volkaert, Reverend Horton Heat, Rosie Flores, Sarah Gayle Meech, Tonya Watts, Wayne Hancock, Whitey Morgan
Welcome to Saving Country Music’s LIVE blog of the inaugural Ameripolitan Awards transpiring at the Wyndham Garden Hotel and Woodward Conference Center in Austin, TX! I’ll be feverishly working to bring you photos and keep you up-to-date on winners, and do my best to put you in the spirit of the moment with the idea that music is best when it’s shared.
2014, Ameripolitan Awards, Dale Watson, Dawn Sears, Elizabeth Cook, Heybale, James Hand, James Intveld, Johnny Bush, Johnny Knoxville, Ray Benson, Roger Alan Wade, Rosie Flores, W.S. Holland, Wayne Hancock, Whitey Morgan
One of the questions that comes up often in country music is “Who’s Gonna Fill Their Shoes?” There’s a lot of industry country stars that would love to tell you they’re the ones, and they record songs, print up merch, and proselytize at every turn for their candidacy to fill in for the lost country greats. But beyond the glitz and the market-driven image campaigns …
Ameripolitan, Austin, Big T's Roadhouse, Bloodshot Records, Bobby Bare, Dale Watson, interview, live album, New Album, Rick Rubin, The Avett Brothers, The Rattle Inn, Waylon Jennings, Whitey Morgan, Whitey Morgan & The 78's
One year ago, after receiving numerous tips from readers that in a previously-aired GAC special about country artist Blake Shelton had some disparaging things to say about classic country music fans, Saving Country Music found the quotes, cued up an article and posted Shelton’s comments verbatim. What happened next was one of the biggest awakenings of classic country fans….
Williamson Branch is a bluegrass and country band from Nashville, and their 15-year-old fiddle and guitar player Melody Williamson recently wrote a song called “There’s No Country Here.” Despite her age, Music Row would be wise to remove themselves for their laundry list clatter and listen to what the future of country music has to say about where country music is headed.
Where it once looked bleak for any positive news to come out of country music’s mainstream channels, now there’s hope. Regardless of how awful the trends of country rap and tailgate songs might be, there are little chutes of life and vitality springing through the scorched country music earth. But there is a stodgy contingent unwilling to acknowledge or participate in what could be a potential turning of the tide.