We were lucky that we had John Prine as long as we did—on loan from the cosmos. But life on this cold ball of rock was always too ordered and normal for John. So now he’s moved on to where light and love comprise the ground and sky, to spin his little stories that might seem silly or even inane if written on paper, but rang profound in our hearts and souls.
And we’re not talking close approximations here that come up commonly in music. Whether it’s the latest symptom of the sameness permeating much of mainstream country at the moment, or a straight up ripoff is a matter for audio experts and the courts. But the similarities are patently obvious.
Any effort to give more emphasis to artists who are deserving of a greater share of the spotlight in country music should be seen as a sum positive, and generally supported, including this Indigo playlist. But there are some serious issues with Indigo, first and possibly foremost being that the name.
Jan Howard’s death was marked with obituaries enumerating her many accomplishments in country music, including her hits, her collaborations with John Anderson, and her long tenure at the Grand Ole Opry. But when it comes to Jan Howard, it was just as much about the work she did off the stage, and out of the spotlight.
Alan Jackson, Brad Paisley, Connie Smith, George Strait, Grand Ole Opry, Hal Ketchum, Jan Howard, Jean Shepard, Jimmy C. Newmann, Keith Urban, Little Jimmy Dickens, Mack McKenzie, Marty Stuart, Patty Loveless, Stonewall Jackson, Terri Clark
Sure, perhaps absence makes the heart grow fonder, and the indefinite hiatus of the boys from Oklahoma has us all foggy-eyed in recollection. But according to one industrious Twitter user’s social experiment in the midst of the Coronavirus quarantine, the Turnpike Troubadours rule the roost.
Holly Williams, Sam Williams, and Hilary Williams were featured on a new CMT series called “Another Round” that looks to capture performers in an intimate setting. But noticeably absent from this assemblage of Hank Jr.’s progeny was Hank Williams III.
It’s hard enough to get the world to pay attention to your record when so many of them are being released every week. Now artists are having to compete with Coronavirus news for the world’s attention, along with the nightly parade of live streaming concerts many artists are offering to help supplement income due to touring losses.
With passing of Kenny Rogers, there’s the passing of a little part of all us—a little part of our childhood where he loomed so large, a little part of our silly little slivers of life in this world where he reigned so ironically, a little part of ourselves where we separate certain eras in our own histories to the contributions of this bearded singer and actor.
In a teary-eyed address on Instagram Wednesday night (3-18), Zac Brown explained that after 15 years of touring, he was having to let go of 90% of his full time employees as part of his road crew due and support staff due to the Coronavirus cancellations. Though there is no doubt this was a tough decision for Zac Brown, some are questioning if it was necessary.
This is bound to create a problem in the already-crowded festival and touring space. Even before Coronavirus, we saw many festivals cancelling or postponing 2020 plans due to the inability to secure talent or due to competing festivals moving into their markets. Now you will have spring festivals competing with fall ones.
ACL Fest, AmericanaFest, Bristol Rhythm and Roots Reunion, Chris Stapleton, Coachella, Coronavirus, COVID-19, Hangout Fest, Jamey Johnson, Larry Joe Taylor Festival, Luck Reunion, MerleFest, Old Settler's Fest, Stagecoach, SXSW, Tortuga Fest, Ultra Fest, Willie Nelson, Yola
The fans of much-beloved Texas music songwriter Dalton Domino were disappointed to scroll through their social media feeds on Saturday (3-14) to see a missive from the Lubbock, TX native that seemed to imply he’s done with music. Finito. Game over. “Thank you. From the bottom of my heart. Thank you,” Dalton posted.
When it comes to saving country music in the mainstream, Tim McGraw and Reba McEntire both have played important roles recently. During Tim McGraw’s time at Big Machine, he showed a somewhat unexpected but welcomed turn to his roots, and Reba’s “Stronger Than The Truth” was one of the best mainstream albums in years.
Well here we sit on the eve of the Ides of March, just a few days removed from live music Armageddon the likes we’ve never seen before in history, in a moment we’re sure to remember keenly for generations to come. Fears of the spread of the Coronavirus have now reached every sector of music. But the Grand Ole Opry endures.
When Dierks Bentley announced that his next album cycle would surround his screw off side project with his road band called Hot Country Knights and that they’d actually signed to UMG Nashville, we really didn’t know what to expect. We knew he was getting silly, but we had no idea he’d be getting funny too.
Without a single case of the Coronavirus either confirmed or even suspected at the moment in Austin, TX or the greater Travis county area, the mayor of Austin, Steve Adler, has declared a “local disaster,” mandating that the music portion of SXSW set to transpire in Austin the 3rd week of March will no longer happen, against the wishes of SXSW itself.
“Nashville.” Oh how people love to wag a dirty finger in its direction as this monolithic homogenized reprehensible blob-like entity looming on the horizon, responsible for all the current ills in country music and some of the cultural filth beyond.
Tyler Childers is already regarded as one hell of a singer, songwriter, and country music performer, so much so that even without mainstream radio play, he’s getting nominated for Grammys. But who the hell knew this boy could play fiddle too?
As tax season approaches and we get the opportunity to tie a bow around the doings of 2019, it’s always interesting to look back on the year at the Grand Ole Opry to see which performing members are paying their proper dues to country music’s most historic institution, and which one’s aren’t.
Alan Jackson, Barbara Mandrell, Blake Shelton, Carrie Underwood, Chris Janson, Dan Rogers, Dustin Lynch, Gene Watson, Grand Ole Opry, Hal Ketchum, Kelsea Ballerini, Loretta Lynn, Lorrie Morgan, Luke Combs, Patty Loveless, Reba McEntire, Rhonda Vincent, Ronnie Milsap, Stonewall Jackson, Tom T. Hall
Handing out the award for Best Rockabilly Male were rockabilly legends Jim Heath of The Reverend Horton Heat, and Nick 13 of Tiger Army. As opposed to the regular canned statements ahead of handing out the award, Nick 13 spoke about the importance of not just rockabilly, but all roots music that is going ignored in mainstream music.
This “shitting out of his mouth” to use Sturgill’s own words is not something to be condoned, neither is taking a ho hum attitude towards a tour that fans who don’t have the luxury of telling their bosses off will be spending their hard earned money to attend. This is all disappointing, and very injurious to the grassroots side of the music industry.
There is no doubt that by any objective assessment, when it comes to the world of creative types in the realm of music or otherwise, their ranks tend to veer more towards liberal ideals when it comes to politics. But that in no way excludes the gift of creativity from people who happen to be more conservative or independent of mindset.
Aaron Watson, Alan Jackson, Bill Anderson, Billy Joe Shaver, Brennen Leigh, Charlie Daniels, Chris Knight, Hank Williams Jr., Jamey Johnson, Jason Isbell, John Anderson, John Rich, Larry Gatlin, Loretta Lynn, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Maddie Marlow, Merle Haggard, Oak Ridge Boys, Ronnie Dunn, Sunny Sweeney, Toby Keith, Tracy Lawrence, Travis Tritt
“If it ever gets to be too much for you, there are a lot of great songwriters out there who agree with you politically. Oh wait, no there aren’t,” Jason Isbell responded to a Twitter user. But this assessment severely discounts to work of conservative songwriters who’ve contributed to the American songwriting canon.
Daniel Lee Martin always knew he wanted to be famous. He launched a country music career where he would write songs with Keith Urban, open for Willie Nelson, and have MLB pitching ace Bronson Arroyo invest in him. He would star in reality TV shows. But now, Daniel Lee Martin is famous for all of the wrong reasons.
Canadian country and Western singer Corb Lund recently announced he will be releasing a new album called ‘Agricultural Tragic,’ and ahead of the record, he’s released a new song called “90 Seconds of Your Time.” Corb alluded with the release of the song that it was based on a true story, and now we know just how true that story is.