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.
The world has been shuttered and turned upside down by the Coronavirus. But the Opry will continue on, refusing to break its storied tradition with its 4,916th consecutive Saturday night broadcast. There will be no backup band and no audience obviously. But the Opry will bring out the stars.
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.
Songwriting legend John Prine’s wife, Fiona Whelan Prine, has tested positive for the Coronavirus. Diagnosed late last week, she hasn’t been running a fever, but has been suffering from a cough and some breathlessness, and general fatigue. “I just don’t feel great at all, to put it mildly.”
Traditional country to the core and produced by the legendary Lloyd Maines, this collection of twelve songs penned mostly by Gummersall himself, but with a few assists from Devon O’Day and the great Jim Lauderdale, is bound to slide under-the-radar due to the straightforward nature of the approach, but is determined to be heard.
This year the Luck Reunion had an incredible lineup. But like everything else, it has been cancelled due to the Coronavirus. Nonetheless, they will be celebrating Thursday (3-19) with a live streaming event showcasing many of the artists originally scheduled to perform, and a few surprises.
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.
“Our Song” reminds us that the most important thing in our lives is each other. “You make it right when everything’s wrong,” Willie sings, which is a message that rings true as many sit virtually locked down with our loved ones due to the Coronavirus. A song like this may seem a little too sappy coming from some, but it’s welcomed from Willie.
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.
If you’re apt to fall in love with the albums and songs from sincere and critically-acclaimed songwriters such as Lori McKenna, Emily Scott Robinson, and Caroline Spence, take a listen to this new EP from Anna Lynch called Apples in the Fall that is likely to nestle quite smartly into your tastes and sensibilities.
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.
The Saving Country Music Top 25 Playlist is built to keep you informed on all the best songs and albums coming out right here, right now in country and roots music. It’s available on most all streaming formats, or just use the song, artist, and album recommendations to find something new to listen to. New songs just added.