Didn’t we just endure an installment of the ACM Awards just a few short months ago? Well yes we did. But thanks to COVID-19 the last cycle was protracted, and here it has come back around again. Whoopee. Get ready for (mostly) the same parade of names that get nominated every year.
Every year the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville seats a variety of names from throughout the country and roots world in what they call their American Currents exhibit. This is the opportunity for artists that you may not normally see an exhibit for get an opportunity to be featured.
Ashley McBryde, Billy Strings, Casey Beathard, Charley Crockett, Country Music Hall of Fame, Darius Rucker, Eddie Stubbs, Eric Church, Faith Hill, Freddy Fender, Hot Country Knights, Jimmie Allen, John Prine, Luke Combs, Maren Morris, Mickey Guyton, Miranda Lambert, Rissi Palmer, Sister Sadie
We’ve run down the Album of the Year Nominees for 2020, as well as the Song of the Year nominees, and an Essential Albums list is also coming together. But since the mainstream of country isn’t always well-represented on these lists, let’s look back on some of those best albums.
The 2021 Grammy Award nominees were announced on Tuesday (11/24), and as can be expected, there is some good, some bad, many worthy nominations, a few probably born of virtue signaling as you can expect. But overall, it’s about par for the course.
Ashley McBryde, Black Pumas, Brandi Carlile, Brandy Clark, Brittany Howard, Brothers Osborne, Charley Crockett, Dan Auerbach, Dave Cobb, Grammy Awards, Ingrid Andress, John Anderson, John Prine, Linda Ronstadt, Lori McKenna, Lucinda Williams, Mickey Guyton, Miranda Lambert, Sarah Jarosz, Sierra Hull, Sturgill Simpson, The Highwomen
Murder ballads are indelible part of country music history, from the earliest recording from The Carter Family, all the way to today with Ashley McBryde’s latest radio single “Martha Divine.” The roots of murder ballads go back to before country music was a commercial enterprise.
Over the last few years we’ve something completely unexpected from Eric Church, and unprecedented from many mainstream country stars. Whether it was a natural maturation, becoming a father, or actually listening to his critics, Eric Church changed, and in a meaningful way.
Many gave credit to Garth Brooks for taking himself out of contention, and you can’t blame him personally for voters awarding him the CMA Entertainer of the Year. But there’s still some bad blood out there coming from many in the country community, including Miranda Lambert, apparently.
To help in the COVID-19 recovery effort, the Hall of Fame is planning a special live streaming event that will match up many of the iconic instruments in the “Precious Jewels” collection and other displays with many of the best artists and players of today.
Alison Brown, Ashley McBryde, Bill Monroe, Brad Paisley, Carlene Carter, Country Music Hall of Fame, Dan Tyminski, Dave Cobb, Don Rich, Earl Scruggs, Emmylou Harris, Hank Williams, John Prine, Johnny Cash, Kane Brown, Keith Whitley, Lester Flatt, Loretta Lynn, Lucinda Williams, Marty Stuart, Miranda Lambert, Randy Travis, Ricky Skaggs, Rodney Crowell, The War and Treaty, Tim McGraw
‘Co-Starring’ is a spirited, ambitious, well-written and performed late career effort by Ray Wylie Hubbard that makes a strong case why he deserves major label backing, why all the praise and opportunities he’s been receiving lately (however late) are warranted, while also making a worthy introduction into why so many revere this man.
Also as part of the reopening, the Hall of Fame is planning a special live streaming event on October 28th, and one they hope will be one of their biggest fundraisers ever, called “Big Night (At The Museum)”. It will match legendary instruments with many of the legendary artists of today.
Alison Brown, Ashley McBryde, Bill Monroe, Carlene Carter, Charlie Daniels, Country Music Hall of Fame, Dave Cobb, Emmylou Harris, Hank Williams, Jimmie Rodgers, Kane Brown, Keb Mo, Marty Stuart, Miranda Lambert, Reba McEntire, Ricky Skaggs, Rodney Crowell, The War and Treaty, Tim McGraw
Oh CMA’s. How 2020 of you to nominate Justin Bieber for three CMA Awards. Now he can compete with Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails, who won his first in 2019. But hey, the 2020 CMA nominations aren’t all bad. Ashley McBryde received three nominations. You know, just as many as Justin Bieber.
Ashley McBryde has a knack for writing and performing songs that defy the odds and do surprisingly well in spite of the mainstream radio world dragging their feet, or outright getting in the way. Regardless, people are still listening, and the same goes for her current single “One Night Standards.”
From Taylor Swift’s recent surprise album ‘Folklore,’ the most folkish or “country” song from the collection called “Betty” is being sent to country radio as a proper radio single. It was sent officially to many radio affiliates on Thursday (7-30) after numerous stations were already playing the track.
Alan Jackson fans have been hankering for some new music for a while now since it’s been a good five years since he released his last album. Well he surprised us all this week by releasing a new version of an old Don Williams song with up-and-coming Capitol Records Nashville signee Caylee Hammack.
As we get to the halfway pole in the musical year, it’s time to look back and asses the best albums that have been released in 2020 so far. At the moment, we are very top loaded with stellar releases, with many albums already feeling like strong contenders for Album of the Year.
Beyond making a really bad amalgam of derivative and formulaic rap pop by ripping off the styles of Drake and trap beat artists to only then turn around and sell it as country to the gullible masses, Sam Hunt is also superlative at turning hip-hop, pop, and indie rock writers into certified country music experts.
Ray Wylie has parleyed his many years of peddling mad influence in country and roots music into a collaborative album hosting a heavy dose of cool names. Called “Co-Starring,” it is preceded by the new song “Bad Trick” that itself sees Ringo Starr, Don Was, Joe Walsh, and Chris Robinson of The Black Crowes all show up to support Hubbard.
Aaron Lee Tasjan, Ashley McBryde, Bad Trick, Big Machine Records, Chris Robinson, Co-Starring, Don Was, Elizabeth Cook, Eric Church, Joe Walsh, Pam Tillis, Paula Nelson, Peter Rowan, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Ringo Starr, Ronnie Dunn, Scott Borchetta, The Cadillac Three, Tyler Bryant and the Shakedown
Scheduled to appear on the hallowed Grand Ole Opry stage Saturday night (4-4) will be Ashley McBryde, who just released a critically-acclaimed new album ‘Never Will,’ Canadian country artist and Opry member Terri Clark, as well as former American Idol contestant turned country star Lauren Alaina.
Ashley McBryde was already considered one of the best artists from mainstream label crowd, and a bright spot for country music moving forward. With her new album ‘Never Will,’ she cements her place as one of the best current artists in country music, period. Inspired, inspiring, well-performed and written, make ample room in your listening rotation
It’s hard enough to get the world to pay attention to your record when so many of them are being released every week. Now artists are having to compete with Coronavirus news for the world’s attention, along with the nightly parade of live streaming concerts many artists are offering to help supplement income due to touring losses.
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 (see below), or you can just use the song, artist, and album recommendations to find something new to listen to. New songs just added.
We’ve already run down the Greatest Country Albums of the Decade, and in there, albums in the mainstream were given fair competition to be included, and some made the cut. But in the spirit of inclusiveness and impartiality, let’s make sure the great records from the mainstream get their due as well.
Alan Jackson, Ashley McBryde, Brandy Clark, Caitlyn Smith, Chris Stapleton, Dierks Bentley, Eric Church, George Strait, Jamey Johnson, Jon Pardi, Kacey Musgraves, Kalie Shorr, Kellie Pickler, Kip Moore, Miranda Lambert, Mo Pitney, Pistol Annies, Randy Houser, Reba McEntire, William Michael Morgan
It’s been 10 years since Country Music Hall of Famers Brooks & Dunn hit the road for a proper national tour. That will all change this summer and fall when the duo hits the road on the REBOOT 2020 Tour. Who will the opening acts be? According to the duo, there won’t be any. But there will be “special guests.”
Ashley McBryde is resetting what we’ve come to expect from mainstream country performers, mainly bringing grit, guts, tattoos, honesty, and plenty of rock attitude to her roosty sound that has made her a favorite of many fans and critics, and had her waking away with the CMA for Best New Artist back in November.