Picking the Saving Country Music Song of the Year winner has been especially excruciating here in 2022. Not only was there a strong field of initial nominees, no less than four songs emerged as front runners in the voting and discussion, with all of them basically receiving similar counts in the comments.
Infinite apologies if you came here looking for your next favorite boot scooter, because that’s not what Song of the Year is all about. There will be a Single of the Year category coming up too. But what we’re looking for here is the most unabashedly slow and sentimental sad bastard songs possible.
Here is the 2022 Saving Country Music Christmas Playlist. It is country. It is good. It is all new recordings of both classics and original songs released in 2022, delicately curated to remove anything that is too syrupy, too pop, or not cool. All the songs have been expertly arranged to be listened to consecutively.
The Grammy Awards officially open the initial round of voting for nominees today, and due to the propensity for the Grammys to often overlook key contributors in the country music and roots space, here are some simple suggestions of what Grammy voters should make sure they don’t ignore for the 2023 awards.
49 Winchester, American Aquarium, Arlo McKinley, Ashley McBryde, Brennen Leigh, Brent Cobb, Caroline Spence, Charles Wesley Godwin, Charley Crockett, Grammy Awards, Ian Noe, John Prine, Jon Pardi, Kaitlin Butts, Lyle Lovett, Molly Tuttle, Sturgill Simpson, Tommy Prine, Vince Gill, Wade Bowen, Willi Carlisle, Willie Nelson, Zach Bryan
John Prine was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois, but the compass of his musical world was Muhlenberg County, Kentucky, where his parents and grandparents were from, where he visited frequently when growing up, and where some of his fondest memories were made. Prine spelled it all out in “Paradise.”
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 you can just use the song, artist, and album recommendations.
At 26-years-old, Tommy Prine is the youngest son of John Prine. He learned how to fingerpick from his father, first picking up a guitar at the age of 10. But interestingly, it wasn’t his father’s music that first inspired Tommy to get into singer/songwriter material at the ago of 17. It was Jason Isbell’s opus ‘Southeastern.’
The Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame announced their 2022 class last week, with Shania Twain, Steve Wariner, Hillary Lindsey, Gary Nicholson, and David Malloy all being named 2022 inductees. With Shania leading the way, this is the first time since 2009 that the Nashville institution has picked two women.
Amy Grant, Beth Nielson Chapman, Billy Joe Shaver, Bobbie Gentry, Clint Black, Country Music Hall of Fame, David Malloy, Garth Brooks, Gary Nicholson, Gretchen Peters, Guy Clark, Hillary Lindsey, John Prine, K.T. Oslin, Martina McBride, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame, Robert "Mutt" Lange, Rosanne Cash, Shania Twain, Sharon Vaughn, Steve Wariner, Tanya Tucker, Townes Van Zandt, Trisha Yearwood
It very well could have just been a one-off engagement, and no more. But as a fan, you hold out hope. It’s never over until it’s over. The fact that Charlie is still around, and we know he has at least some capacity still to play and sing, perhaps there may be a little more of it in the future.
The new award will give one more opportunity for Americana artists (and some country artists by proxy) to be nominated and win in what has become one of the most crowded categories in all of the Grammy Awards. But the problem remains that anything can be called Americana.
Part of both the insurgent country music movement, and the groundswell of Kentucky songwriters reshaping the modern country landscape, Kelsey Waldon from Monkey’s Eyebrow, KY is getting ready to release her latest record called ‘No Regular Dog.’
There are run-of-the-mill tribute albums, and then there’s this tribute album due out August 5th called ‘Something Borrowed, Something New: A Tribute to John Anderson.’ What makes it remarkable is that a rather incredible list of contributors are coming together.
Ashley McBryde, Brent Cobb, Brothers Osborne, Dan Auerbach, David Ferguson, David Rawlings, Easy Eye Sound, Eric Church, Gillian Welch, Jamey Johnson, John Anderson, John Prine, Luke Combs, Nathaniel Rateliff, Sierra Ferrell, Sierra Hull, Sturgill Simpson, Tyler Childers
If you were looking or hoping for someone who could help carry the Prine me and legacy into the future for further generations, you just may be in luck. Though it’s all still in it’s nascent stages, John Prine’s youngest son Tommy Prine has decided to enter the family business.
The last time Arlo McKinley released a record, the darn thing hauled off and won Saving Country Music’s Album of the Year. All the more reason to not temper excitement that he’s just announced his second album on John Prine’s Oh Boy Records.
One of the great things about The Wooks is you could pick them up and drop them smack dab in the middle of a bluegrass festival, or a punk club in Brooklyn, or a honky tonk in Texas, or a hipster bar in Berkeley, and they would immediately become a favorite band.
It seems these days that life pinballs back and forth from one disaster to another. You almost have to be reminded that on December 10th, a cluster of tornadoes ravaged Western Kentucky and the surrounding areas and states, leaving a large swath of destruction.
Abby Hamilton, Brother Smith, Cole Chaney, Eric Bolander, Grayson Jenkins, John Prine, John R. Miller, Justin Wells, Kelsey Waldon, Logan Halstead, Magnolia Boulevard, Nicholas Jamerson, Scott T. Smith, Senora May, The Burl
The tornadoes that ravaged large swaths of Western Kentucky on December 10th struck at the very heart of country music’s heartland, and what’s become the launching point for the current country music revolution led very much by artists from Kentucky.
Abby Hamilton, Brit Taylor, Brother Smith, Cole Chaney, Eric Bolander, Grayson Jenkins, John Prine, John R. Miller, Justin Wells, Kelsey Waldon, Leah Blevins, Logan Halstead, Magnolia Boulevard, Nicholas Jamerson, Oh Boy Records, Scott T. Smith, Senora May, Sundy Best, The Burl
Listen ladies and gentlemen, it’s not just a hypothetical that when a song gets featured on Paramount’s Yellowstone series it’s a big deal. What’s going on at the moment is a musical phenomenon helping to support independent country music.
Steve Poltz has morphed into an bonafide underground folk hero. His songs work like kids songs for adults, similar to the songwriting legacy of John Prine. Poltz’s storytelling skills in the live setting rival or surpass the very titans of the craft such as Todd Snider.
Embracing and the cliché nature of what is otherwise an excellent country song, switching out some honky tonk piano at the start and then revisiting the fiddle start off later in the song allows Tyler Childers to smear his own DNA on the track, while still being respectful to the original composition.
Singer, performer, guitarist, and songwriter Nanci Griffith who was known for her foundational influence on Texas music, and for contributing greatly to the Americana community in Nashville passed away on Friday, August 13th at the age of 68.
“This is big,” she said to her fans. “Now is the time to grow and expand. I’m thrilled to be joining forces with Oh Boy Records to release ‘American Siren.’ I’m honored that I get to be part of John Prine’s legacy. And I am thrilled to tell you that you, my fans, were an integral part of this.”
“What is country music?!” This is what thousands of country music fans screamed at their televisions on Tuesday, June 8th when they were taken by surprise to see one of the questions on the TV game show dealt with one of the most iconic songs in country history.
Before the pandemic, whenever an important artist in country and roots music passed away, it was customary for folks to gather in a remembrance in Nashville. For obvious reasons, that couldn’t happen in a timely fashion for John Prine, who died on April 7th, 2020.