Isn’t it strange how in the real world, we shy away instinctively from things that cause us pain, but when it comes to music and art, we seek pain out as one of the primary markers of the most potent and exceptional expressions of the artistic realm. Somehow, drawing that pain out through music makes us feel better.
Joseph Huber, one of the primary songwriters and banjo/fiddle player for the high-octane bluegrass outfit The .357 String Band has released a solo album called Bury Me Where I Fall. This album marks a completely different direction from the punk-inspired string music Joe & .357 are known for, but not in the emphasis on top-notch songwriting. Joe takes a more poetic, Townes Van Zandt approach to the lyrics, and a more artistic approach to the music.
Tonight is 2010’s installment of the CMA Awards, undoubtedly country music’s most important night, but one that is regularly marked by controversy. The kinky sex backroom deals that make mainstream country turn get exposed for all to see as awards are handed out as bribes and paybacks, with quality and talent being the least of criteria, if even a concern.
Yesterday was the worldwide release for Charlie Louvin’s new album The Battle Rages On, a 12-song tribute to the men and women of the Armed Services. The 4-time Grammy Winner, Country Music Hall of Famer, and member of the Grand Ole Opry for 55 years shows his patriotic side as his own battle rages on with pancreatic cancer.
On Saturday night the Hole in the Wall in Austin, TX was transformed into “Dirtyfoot” headquarters for fans, bands and extended family of Hillgrass Bluebilly Records for their Launch Party. Folks from as far as Canada, Seattle, Minnesota, and Boston flew in exclusively for the event and helped pack the walls of the Hole to near capacity, while over 150 people from around the world tuned in through SCM Live to share the experience.
7 bands and 5 hours of music meant both Hole in the Wall’s stages were pressed into service….
When the Family Tradition exhibit in the Country Music Hall of Fame opened in March of 2008, covering the lives and careers of Hank Sr., Jr., III, Hilly, Holly, and Jett, it was scheduled to close on Decemeber 31, 2009. Nearly a year later it is still going strong, kept alive by popular demand and critical acclaim, and now it is expanding.
On Monday (11-1-10) Jashie P. of Outlaw Radio Chicago met up with the one and only Willie Nelson for a brief but productive interview on Willie’s bus right before his performance at the Rialto Square Theatre in Joliet, IL. Willie talked about how the title for his new album Country Music was a tip of the hat to what he always though country music sounded like, and how he never listens to Sugarland, or most of the other stuff coming out of Music Row.
On Saturday the mother of all SCM Live events will be going down, as we will be broadcasting Hillgrass Bluebilly’s Launch Party, featuring 7 bands, 2 stages, and 6+ hours of music, all LIVE to anywhere in the world from the Hole in the Wall in Austin, TX!
The parade of new lows coming from Music Row in Nashville just keeps coming folks. The pre-Holiday period of 2010 might go down as the worst ever. The latest low blow comes from Jason Aldean, whose single off his album released today called My Kind of Party is a straight up rap song.
Charlie is in the fight of his life with medical bills mounting, and that is why Judd Films has put together a creative way to preserve this historic anniversary concert, while helping out Charlie. With help from Keith Neltner, Judd Films has started a Kickstarter account to help with the hard production costs to get a DVD made of the concert, that will later be sold with all the proceeds going back to Charlie.
When reviews and videos began to surface from Bob Wayne’s recent tour with Th’ Legendary Shack Shakers, the big buzz was about Bob’s new fiddle player named Liz Sloan. Not that Bob hasn’t had great musicians in his band before, quite the contrary, and not that a woman should be considered out of place in Bob’s band, but still Liz’s presence intrigued me wildly because I knew there must be a good story behind it.
This is not John Denver and Olivia Newton John ruffling feathers by winning country awards. This isn’t Garth Brooks flying over stadiums on wires. This isn’t Rascal Flatts rehashing classic rock songs, or even Taylor Swift playing with a fiddle player hidden in a dark corner. This is it. This is the bottom of the slippery slope. This is country music’s ‘rock’ bottom.
On New Year’s Day in 1953, country music’s first superstar Hank Williams died of what could be considered an early-era overdose–heart failure due to a lethal combination of morphine and alcohol. He was the first superstar musician to die in this manner, issuing in an era that would see the deaths of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison, Elvis, and many many more.