September heading into October has been a murderer’s row for both landmark releases in country and roots music, as well as the volume of releases each week. At this point, the levee has given out, and the flood gates are open. With 25+ albums coming out each week, it is impossible to keep up, let alone navigate through everything to potentially find that one album that will speak to you.
But if you have any chance of staying afloat, it will be using the list below to hopefully let you know what’s coming out, and what might appeal to you. For a detailed list of releases every week, you can also check out Saving Country Music’s most recent release radar.
October 6th also happens to be a Bandcamp Friday, which means they waive the fees when you purchase from your favorite bands.
Mike and the Moonpies – Live From The Devil’s Backbone
Just announced, Mike and the Moonpies will be releasing a live album recorded at the historic Texas tavern on May 20th, 2022. It’s the second live album from the band that Saving Country Music has declared one of the top live acts in country music for the last five years running. “When we’re working on recording at yellow DOG, we’ll go there for nightcaps and then after the album wraps to celebrate. So we’re very connected to The Devil’s Backbone. It’s like family there,” says Mike Harmeier.
Special edition mismatched colored vinyl will be made available for pre-order soon, and a concert video of the performance will also be made available in November.
TRACK LIST: 1.Intro 2.Paycheck to Paycheck 3.Country Music’s Dead 4.Smooth Shot of Whiskey 5.Getting High at Home 6.Wedding Band 7.Beaches of Biloxi 8.Steak Night at the Prairie Rose 9.Rainy Day 10.Brother 11.Whose Side You’re On 12.Danger 13.Social Drinkers 14.Miss Fortune 15.You Look Good in Neon 16.Hour on the Hour 17.Road Crew 18.Dance with Barbara(streaming + video only) 19.Cheap Silver 20.We’re Gone 21.London Homesick Blues 22.Don’t It Make You Wanna Dance
Billy Don Burns – I’ve Seen A Lot of Highway – October 6th
When broaching the subject of forgotten Outlaws who’ve gone criminally underrated by the callous country music industry, Billy Don Burns has to to be right near the top of the list. His songs have been recorded by the likes of Willie Nelson, Johnny Paycheck, Hank Cochran, Mel Tillis, Sammy Kershaw, Whitey Morgan, Cody Jinks, Colter Wall, and Connie Smith among others, as well as working as a producer for Merle Haggard and Johnny Paycheck.
The country industry may have forgotten ol’ Billy Don, but his fellow artists most certainly haven’t, including the new crop of Outlaw-style country artists that look up to him as a patron saint. That is why he’ll be joined by Cody Jinks, Shooter Jennings, Whey Jennings, Wes Shipp, and The Storey Boys on his new upcoming album. (read more)
The Steel Woods – On Your Time
Though The Steel Woods are notorious for putting on hard charging Southern rock shows that at times veer into the metal range, it’s the lyricism that gives fans of the band ample themes to explore. On Your Time with loosely follow the trajectory of another character named Uncle Lloyd who was first introduced on their debut album via a song of the same name. “Uncle Lloyd” was written by Darrell Scott, so it will be interesting to see how the band develops that song into a deeper narrative.
Joining singer/guitarist Wes Bayliss and guitarist Tyler Powers is bassist Johnny Stanton and drummer Isaac Senty. All three of the previous albums by The Steel Woods earned high marks for songwriting, musicianship, and originality while remaining grounded in Southern rock roots. We should expect On Your Time to be no different. (read more)
Victoria Bailey – A Cowgirl Rides On
Victoria Bailey has been a part of the swell of pioneering women from the West Coast setting country music back on the right path with compelling stories and stunning talent. Featured numerous times on SCM’s Top 25 Playlist and praised here for her 2020 album Jesus, Red, Wine, and Patsy Cline, she’s now back with her sophomore effort that certainly deserves to be on your radar.
“I feel like each song has a little piece of me,” Bailey says, calling the new release A Cowgirl Rides On a bluegrass gospel album. “It’s kind of always been on my heart to make a western gospel album that ties into all the things I love. It’s a big part of my life.”
John R. Miller – Heat Comes Down
There are a lot of artists these days inspired by Tyler Childers. There’s only a select few that have inspired Tyler Childers themselves. One such soul is John R. Miller who worked as a musician for hire for years and made lots of friends along the way. “A well-travelled wordsmith mapping out the world he’s seen, three chords at a time,” is how Childers considers him.
“Whenever I’ve got a lot of thoughts bouncing around my head, alchemizing that energy into something creative helps take the gravity out of them and quiets them down for a while,” says Miller. “For me this album is largely about anxiety in many forms: the things that cause it, what it causes in turn, and the moments of clarity in between. Listening back to it now, most of the songs seem like they’re trying to answer the questions I’ve been asking myself.” (read more)
Jason Hawk Harris- Thin Places
With his debut album Love & The Dark from 2019, Jason Hawk Harris quickly established that he wasn’t your run-of-the-mill country artist. A thoughtful songwriter with a compositional mind due to his education in classical music, he brought a completely unique set of tools and perspectives to the genre that resulted in critical acclaim for his Bloodshot Records release.
But if there has ever been an artist snake bit by circumstances, it’s been Jason Hawk Harris. The pandemic put a crimp in his capability to tour behind his debut album. A tornado struck when he was trying to make his followup. Bloodshot Records went under, leaving him without a musical home. But he found glimmers of hope amid Thin Places, and that became the inspiration for his new album. (read more)
John Baumann – Border Radio
Austin-based singer/songwriter John Baumann is considered one of the best current songwriters from the Lone Star State. Along with his solo career, his music has been showcased in the Texas Country supergroup The Panhandlers, and he’s also had Kenny Chesney record one of his songs. Commonly evoking geography in his writing, Border Radio will be welcomed by Baumann fans.
“I hope the listener can transport themselves out of their lives and go somewhere else in a cinematic way,” Baumann says about the album. “I hope listening to this album is like going to the movies. It’s about experiencing something else, somewhere else.”
Tré Burt – Traffic Fiction
From John Prine’s Oh Boy Records, Tré Burt was put on the music map for many with his Dylan-esque songs and style. But for his new album, he’s getting a little funky and being unafraid to have a good time.
“As it became time to start writing for my 3rd LP for Oh Boy Records and figuring how I wanted to express all that has happened since ‘You, Yeah, You,’ I decided it was time to try and take that old Cadillac sound from my childhood and use it as the modicum and put it through everything I’ve learned since then. I decided to write an album that says, ‘Sure, the world is fucked and the evil overlords may very well destroy it, but that’s none of my business and I choose love and rock and roll, baby.'”
Reba McEntire – Not That Fancy – Reba McEntire teams up with producer Dave Cobb to offer 14 acoustic versions of some of her most iconic hits. Don’t sleep on this one if you’re a Reba fan. Coincides with the release of the book Not That Fancy: Simple Lessons on Living, Loving, Eating, and Dusting Off Your Boots.
Alex Miller – Country EP – Alex Miller stunned with his traditional country sound on his 2022 album Miller Time. Country is part of two EPs releases, with the next one to be released in early 2024.
John Morgan – Remember Us EP – Though this guy is signed to BBR Records and has released some more mainstream-leaning songs, there’s enough country here to keep him on your radar. It will be really interesting to see how he develops in the coming months and years.
Lisa Brokop – Who’s Gonna Fill Their Heels? – The 3-time Canadian Country Music Association’s Independent Female Artist of the Year is trying to answer George Jones’ iconic question, but from a female perspective with covers and adaptations of iconic country songs.
Darius Rucker – Carolyn’s Boy – Yes, don’t get your hopes up too much that Hootie will take a hard turn toward the traditional. But naming this album after his mother who died before he ever hit it big as saying this album is him finding his place in country music make it worth giving a listen.
C. Albert Blomquist – Hug Your Neck – Straight up honky-tonk country album worth checking out.
Summerlyn Powers – The Hive EP – Very interesting artist worth getting on your radar that veers between country, folk, and bluesy rock, all backed by a compelling voice and quality songs.
EmiSunshine and the Rain – Sideshow – Remember the precocious viral video from Emi many years back? Now she’s releasing a straight up bluegrass album that includes guest performances from Cruz Contreras, Wyatt Ellis, Justin Moses, and more.
Chris Jones and the Night Drivers – Pages In Your Hand EP – After a quarter century as a bluegrass performer, this is the first taste of Chris Jones’ solo project called the Night Drivers.
Charlie Mars – Times Have Changed – A mix of folk, country, and a dash of humor, Charlie Mars is like a cross between Todd Snider and Steve Poltz. You can hear this in the silly and entertaining lead single “Fat Dad.”
Ida Mae – Thunder Above – Nashville/London duo that mixes folk, country, and deep blues into their sound. You might have seen them opening for folks such as Willie Nelson, Alison Krauss, and Marcus King.
Martin Zellar – Head West – First solo album in 11 years from the frontman of the alt-country pioneers the Gear Daddies.
Good Lovelies – We Will Never Be The Same – JUNO award-winning folk/Americana trio from Canada.
Arielle Silver – Watershed – “Literate-Folk” that also veers into other roots music, rockabilly, and more. Inspired by Arielle Silver’s childhood and surroundings.
P.J.M. Bond – In Our Time – An album based around Ernest Hemingway’s short-story collection of the same name released in 1925.
Mouths of Babes – World Brand New – Progressive folk/Americana duo.
Lily & Madeleine – Nite Swim – The fifth album from the Indianapolis-based folk-pop duo.
Ed Sweeney – A Sunday Drive – Folk album inspired by the image of an old car sitting in front of an old gas station that adorns the cover.