A once-in-a-lifetime event happened on January 12th, 2019 when a wide-ranging assemblage of talent from country music and beyond came together at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville to pay tribute to Willie Nelson. Called ‘Willie: Life and Songs of an American Outlaw,’ it’s being released on CD and DVD.
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.
The 2020 CMA Awards will transpire on Wednesday, November 11th (make sure to follow along with Saving Country Music’s LIVE blog), and this year it will be a tribute heavy affair. Tributes, remembrances, and the marking of anniversaries will be a big part of the presentation.
Brian Kelley, Carrie Underwood, Charley Pride, Charlie Daniels, Chris Stapleton, CMA Awards, Darius Rucker, Eric Church, Florida Georgia Line, Joe Diffie, Kenny Rogers, Lee Brice, Luke Combs, Mac Davis, Miranda Lambert, Tyler Hubbard
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.
Despite George Strait officially retiring from full-time touring in 2014—a commitment he’s actually stuck to unlike other superstars, only playing sporadic stadium shows and limited-run Las Vegas residencies—Strait surprisingly walked away with Billboard’s “Top Country Tour” award.
Saturday, October 10th would have been John Prine’s 74th birthday. The revered songwriting legend passed away on April 7th due to COVID-19. But there will still be plenty of remembering and celebration to mark the occasion., including re-airing the popular “Picture Show: A Tribute Celebrating John Prine.”
It only took 45 years, and many many impassioned pleas by fans and supporters and believers (including here at Saving Country Music), but Ray Wylie Hubbard will finally be appearing on his own segment on the longest-running music show on television, ‘Austin City Limits.’
It’s worth noting that Rolling Stone’s new updated version of their “500 Best Albums of All Time” significantly diminishes iconic titles from the classic country canon. Not only were some titles downgraded, some were eliminated entirely.
Charley Pride, Cody Jinks, Dolly Parton, Eric Church, George Jones, Gram Parsons, Jason Isbell, John Prine, Johnny Cash, Kacey Musgraves, Lucinda Williams, Miranda Lambert, Patsy Cline, Ray Charles, Rolling Stone, Shania Twain, Steve Earle, Taylor Swift, The Byrds, Turnpike Troubadours, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson
Mickey Guyton made one of the greatest impacts during this week’s ACM Awards. But as we have seen from the media on numerous occasions, important moments for black country artists in the past are being overlooked to score a buzzy headline or tweet.
Just remember, “It’s only the ACM Awards.” It’s just disappointing that one of their best presentations in perhaps a decade or more—and under difficult circumstances—had to be sullied at the very end by a silly and avoidable decision.
Remember, it’s just the ACM Awards. Less prestigious than the CMAs, and more susceptible to bloc voting and other dubious practices than most any other awards apparatus in country music and beyond, think of it more as a performative infomercial for the mainstream of country music.
Once again Garth is being Garth, which means ultimately he’s probably doing the right thing and making a good choice. He’s just doing it in the most self-gratifying of ways. His heart is 100% in the right place. But his ego won’t allow him to make an altruistic move without letting everyone else know what he’s doing.
Her name is Ashley Ray. And it’s a name that has ended up in the liner notes of the records of some of country music’s most revered performers like Lori McKenna and Wade Bowen. It’s a name that has been featured in opening slots for Miranda Lambert and Eric Church.
With “Stick That In Your Country Song,” Eric Church has once again proven himself to be one of the most bold and ballsy members of the mainstream country class, emboldened by the artistic freedom he’s earned, and willing to do something with it as a platform, and a podium.
A virtual celebration of Prine’s life and legacy has been planned for Thursday, June 11th called Picture Show: A Tribute Celebrating John Prine to be streamed online. Also after the presentation will be the revealing of a new John Prine song, with more unheard music on the way.
Luke Combs announced recently that his new radio single will be “Lovin’ On You,” and I can’t help but think this decision is a one big boner. Luke already had another single out there gaining serious traction on radio, even as his previous one was cresting the charts. It’s the well-written and fiercely topical “Six Feet Apart.”
Just like all the black squares that co-opted the Black Lives Matters hashtags and sowed chaos on Tuesday, the “Country Music Accountability Sheet” should be taken down because it is directly detrimental to the cause, nonfactual at times, dangerously misleading, and destructive to the careers of artists.
Like everyone else, most of Eric Church’s music plans have been put on ice due to the Coronavirus. But he is planning on releasing new music sooner than later, though any tour plans will be coming later than sooner.
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
Organized by Blackbird Presents who’ve put together a host of these tribute shows over the years, usually if you can’t swing a ticket, you miss your opportunity to see so much country music star power assembled in one place. But for this particular event, footage from the tribute was compiled, and is premiering on A&E Easter Sunday.
A&E, Amanda Shaires, Chris Stapleton, Derek Trucks, Don Was, Ed Helms, Emmylou Harris, Eric Church, George Strait, Jack Johnson, Jamey Johnson, Lyle Lovett, Margo Price, Mickey Raphael, Nora Jones, Ray Benson, Sturgill Simpson, The Little Willies, Willie Nelson
Sure, perhaps absence makes the heart grow fonder, and the indefinite hiatus of the boys from Oklahoma has us all foggy-eyed in recollection. But according to one industrious Twitter user’s social experiment in the midst of the Coronavirus quarantine, the Turnpike Troubadours rule the roost.
Well, if you thought you were already swimming through an upside down world where the NBA and NHL seasons have just been suspended along with pretty much every major music tour and festival to speak of at least until April, well try this development on for size: Ray Wylie Hubbard has signed with Big Machine Records.
The big tribute show at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena for Willie Nelson that transpired on January 12th, 2019 is finally set to be broadcast for the rest of us who couldn’t attend, and it will include some behind-the-scenes footage and interviews as well. Specials for Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers are also on the way.
A&E, Blackbird Presents, Chris Stapleton, Dolly Parton, Eric Church, George Strait, Kenndy Rogers, Lee Ann Womack, Norah Jones, Ray Benson, Sturgill Simpson, The Avett Brothers, Vince Gill, Willie Nelson
Like someone with the Coronavirus coughing in your face, here come the 2020 ACM Awards nominations. With Maren Morris and Thomas Rhett leading the pack of nominees with five nominations each, Justin Bieber receiving three nominations, you might as well be getting news from the local doctor where you’re quarantine station is located.