Along with recalling the great songs and the fond memories, it seems fitting for remember that Charlie Robison was also a fierce titan for independent country music and artists controlling their own destiny.
When Jamey Johnson stood on the stage Friday, August 12th in Lincoln, Nebraska, and barked profanities at the local radio station KX 96.9, he wasn’t just angry they had used “his” stage to promote their station, he was venting the pent up frustration many independent, Red Dirt, and Texas music artists feel.
Jamey Johnson kicked some dust up and had quite a few of his fans fist pumping Friday night, August 12th when he took the stage in Lincoln, Nebraska as part of the Lincoln on the Street event, and berated the local radio station, New Country KX 96.9. The radio station brought out three of their on-air personalities.
Now celebrating five years of gathering in festival form, KOKEFest attracts a huge crowd of local KOKEheads, as well as people from across the country who want to get the genuine Texas country experience, including those who regularly listen to the station remotely online.
Country music is country music, and the best definition of what country music is, is that you know it when you hear it. It’s self-evident. But the genre has birthed many subgenres, many stylistic movements over the years, and at times has seen a splintering and Balkanization.
In 2015, we couldn’t imagine artists not supported by mainstream country radio selling out arenas, and minting multiple Platinum singles without the help of Music Row. Here in 2022, Tyler Childers is considered one of the top artists in the entire country music industry, and now we have Zach Bryan.
Aaron Watson might be one of the hardest artists to get a read on in country music. He’s a fiercely independent and principled performer who embodies the DIY Outlaw spirit of the music as much as anyone. Yet Watson also covets many of the sounds and accolades of the mainstream.
Zach Bryan has officially ensconced himself as an independent country music superstar, doing what only a select few other non radio-supported artists have done through grassroots support in the past, which is score a #1 album in country music.
Zach Bryan and his new album American Heartbreak are having a moment, and when all is said and done and the dust settles, it’s likely to ensconce the singer/songwriter among the very top artists in country music. But it’s not just because the album has 34 songs.
You can find a detailed list of all the confirmed album releases for the 2nd half of 2022 below, some specific albums from each release week that you should make sure to not overlook, and the always-exciting ‘Rumor Mill’ where intelligence is gathered on upcoming releases.
No, not all country radio stations suck. Some are downright badass. KOKE-FM out of Austin, TX is one of them. They’ve also put on a kickass festival now for five years where devotees to the KOKE world congregate.
“Took me about 15 years to write this song,” Brent Cobb says. “Finally finished it up a few days ago. Next time you’re trying to tell your friends about all the cool country artists you listen to just send them to this song. I got as many as I could in there. Proud to know these folks.”
Texas music couple Bruce Robison and Kelly Willis announced the end of their marriage late last week, and with everything else going on, it may have been easy to miss the news, or to maybe gloss over just how significant this news is, and regard it simply as gossip.
Maybe pigs can fly. Maybe monkeys will fly out of Mike Myers’ butt. And maybe mainstream country radio will play Cody Jinks if it’s just given a chance, or a choice. The effort to bring Cody Jinks to the mainstream country airwaves has already born fruit.
The independent music revolution in both country and in the greater music ecosystem in many was born off the back of vinyl record purchases. Where many mainstream fans only cared enough to stream the latest single, independent fans made that extra financial commitment and connection with their favorite artists by purchasing vinyl copies, or sometimes […]
For years, any time a country music artist lashed out about the direction of country music or the quality of its current stars, they received pretty loud applause for their bravery and leadership from the true country music community. That’s still the case, but things are changing as well.
Aaron Watson is enigmatic in the way that you won’t find someone more fiercely dedicated to the independent approach to country music in all of its facets, but who will also still release songs that feel like they’re prattling for commercial acceptance …
2020 is in the books and it’s time to look forward to the bright promise of 2021, and specifically the album releases in the country and roots world we have to be excited about. This includes the most anticipated releases, a complete release radar, as well as the always-fun rumor mill.
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.
When it comes to top-tier releases in the country and roots realm, 2019 was a year like we’ve never seen before. Though it feels like we say that every year, 2019 truly was exceptional. The albums selected to be considered for Saving Country Music’s Album of the Year are so elite, all of them should be considered the winners.
Leading off the latest additions to the Saving Country Music Top 25 playlist is long-time underground honky tonker and survivor Johnny Falstaff with his latest single “Move A Mountain.” Though not tied to a proper album release just yet, it’s a good introduction to this under-the-radar artist who’s been paying dues.
It’s a Texas invasion at the very top of the country music albums charts this week as an oldtimer, an independent maverick, and an upstart troublemaker all from the Lone Star State have pushed the powers that be in pop country down the ladder, and come in at #1, #2, and #3 respectively in album sales.
A few choice cuts have just been added to the Saving Country Music Top 25 Playlist meant to keep you up-to-date with latest songs and albums that should be on your listening radar. Leading the pack is the unexpected, yet very welcome return of Sturgill Simpson to the traditional country realm with his song “The Dead Don’t Die.”
‘Red Bandana’ is anything but typical, for Aaron Watson or anyone else. When Watson says this is his most involved and personal work that he rates at the top of the heap, believe him. When others say they’re shocked or ecstatic about how good this record is, take their word for it. With Red Bandana, Aaron Watson defies his own odds.