Don’t think of Tennessee Jet as your typical country music performer. Consider him more like a character from a Beat-era novel, hitchhiking from California and back, hanging out with a motorcycle gang for a week in the desert, camping out under the stars on the side of the road, all with a guitar slung on his back.
In the 90’s, aggressive, angry, angst-filled music was the pop music of the day—Kurt Cobain and Nirvana, Eddie Vedder and Pearl Jam, and Chris Cornell and Soundgarden. And it wasn’t just limited to what was referred to at the time as “grunge music.” In the 90’s, Marilyn Manson was a pop star.
A Sailor’s Guide to Earth will still be the top debut album for the week, and according to Sturgill, it doesn’t symbolize a complete shift in his music career henceforth, just a “pause” in his country output. Speaking to KCRW where Sturgill performed the new album in its entirety (see below), he told the crowd how his son had inspired the album.
“In Bloom” is an indictment of ones own fans, and is based in part on judgement and assumption. Sturgill gives the song a slight twist by adding the addendum, “But he don’t know what it means, knows not what it means…to love someone,” but despite the more bright feel of the music of Sturgill’s version, the message remains the same.
Yes, yes, it’s the age-old complaint that music doesn’t sound as good as it used to, and that the singers of today aren’t nearly as good as the ones we grew up with. Though there is certainly a bit of “old man syndrome” that creeps into this endless debate about the direction of popular music, there is also very specific and irrefutable data that backs up these claims that music isn’t as good.
Reno’s Hellbound Glory has just released a new 5-song EP called LV, named for the initials of lead singer and songwriter Leroy Virgil. The album was recorded in and partially inspired by Leroy’s hometown of Aberdeen, Washington, and marks the first new music from Leroy and Hellbound Glory in nearly three years. On the occasion of the new release I gave Leroy a call…
Anyone who considers themselves a good storyteller has to be an admirer of songwriter and performer Todd Snider. Over his career, it can be argued his stories have gone on to bolster his troubadour status just as much as his songs. And anyone who’s seen Todd Snider perform a few times or more knows that Garth Brooks has been a familiar punching bag for Todd.
All mainstream musical performers are probably asked to do it at one time or another, but whether a musician is willing to lip sync a performance or play to a non-live musical backing track is what separates the boys and girls from the women and men. Sometimes these requests have led to protests. Here’s nine of these such memorable moments captured on tape.