On May 30th, 2018, Justin Townes Earle stopped in Raleigh, North Carolina to perform at Stag’s Head. The concert itself worth seeing, but the moment he addresses what to say to someone struggling with addiction is especially important.
Man. The new music news/albums/videos/whatever for January just won’t let up, and none might be bigger than Wanda Jackson’s collaboration with Jack White The Party Ain’t Over. Wanda AND Jack will be on David Letterman TONIGHT (1-20), and you can now hear the album streaming in its entirety on NPR’s First Listen.
The growl is still there folks, and Jack White may have never been better!
Indie doesn’t really have its own traditions, its own infrastructure like country, blues, or even Texas music. And in this music climate of massive contraction, this is not the time to be creating new infrastructure that may not be sustainable moving forward. So the solution appears to be to incorporate existing infrastructure that was built years ago for roots and country artists, ostensibly squeezing the support for these types of artists out of the picture.
Sure, the attrition is slow and calculated.But over time, as you look at the yearly schedules for things like Austin City Limits, or ACL Fest, or Pickathon…
A month or so ago when I attended a JB Beverley show here in Austin, it occurred to me how much Wayne “The Train” Hancock has emerged as a leader and true elder of the music in the last year. That night he made his way on stage with The Wayward Drifters, and later collaborated with them on a song back at his house. And now on the upcoming Bob Wayne release from Century Media, “The Train” has lent his name once again to an emerging star.
The sometimes rocking, sometimes countrified front man of the legendary Pacific Northwest band The Supersuckers, one Eddie Spaghetti, is ready to go with a new album release through Bloodshot Records called Sundowner on Feb. 15th. As one of the first bands to mix 80’s-style punk rock with country, The Supersuckers and Eddie Spaghetti live in a unique world where they have skins on the wall and respect from both the country and punk world.
Shooter Jennings’ talk of forming a new genre of music called XXX has been all the talk of this website and others, and a few days ago he offered up an exclusive an extensive interview with Jashie P of Outlaw Radio Chicago about the XXX idea, about his latest and controversial album (to some) Black Ribbons, his feelings on country music and if he has “turned his back on it,” and about his long-standing, one-sided feud with Hank Williams III.
Sitting on a shelf somewhere inside the Curb Records complex was an album called This Ain’t Country that Hank III had turned into them for release. The ensuing legal battle over the release of the album is where the cold war between Curb and Hank III became hot. Curb sat on the album, never releasing it, and refusing to allow Hank III to release it independently or on another label. Now Curb has decided to release it many years later, as well as possibly other shelved recordings …
I saw both of these acts recently at the Hillgrass Bluebilly Lunch Party, but because I was too busy managing the live internet audio stream during the Boomswaggler’s set, and the stage was so surrounded by teeming “dirtyfoots” for Possessed’s nightcap performance that I couldn’t steal even a peep, I headed down to Beerland in Austin, TX Friday night to take in the double bill of Hillgrass artists.
Alright look. I know that some of you have already grown tired of the back and forths talking about what to call music and how to manage it, and rather we all spend more time focusing on the actual music itself. I agree, and that will continue to be the main focus of Saving Country Music. But right now, I do not think there is a bigger issue facing the music we all love than this proposed XXX genre. I have already made my initial thoughts known, and had many critical things to say . . .
In the last few years, cataloging the dizzying amount of names that have been associated with music that sometimes is fundamentally the same has become almost impossible, while true sonic variations on the 12 traditional genres abound.
Bogged down arguments about who is what, and what to call it feel so tired, unproductive, and irrelevant, and as the outmoded systems of music distribution and radio promotion continue to erode, classifying your music in one of the traditional 12 genres is becoming less necessary. . .
The uniqueness of Joe Buck is that never has such unchecked anger and vulgarity been accompanied by such Stoic wisdom, coming from the most mild mannered person you’d ever meet. Pissed-offedness is rarely hand in hand with introspection, self-repudiation, and a calm clairvoyance for the impending follies of man. But Joe Buck possesses them all, and at the heart is an outrage over the South’s decaying culture built into a wise, steadfast rage.
Even though T Model is solidly blues, like so many other roots-based independent artists, he has turned to the same underground resources that many independent country acts use to get their music to the people. This has formed the big tent movement that can be seen in things like the Muddy Roots Festival lineup where you have country and blues musicians booked side by side, and nobody bats an eyelash.
A while back it was brought to my attention that industrial rocker Shooter Jennings, along with No Depression blogger Adam Sheets had crafted the idea of starting a new genre of music, or more specifically, a radio format, called “XXX” after the nomenclature found on the front of moonshine bottles. The idea is to give a home to music that “is too rock for country, and too country for rock.”