“Not a lot moves the needle these days. But this show moves the needle.” That was Hayes Carll, putting it out there as succinctly as possible about the impact the Paramount TV series Yellowstone has had on independent country music now for four seasons, with the fifth set to commence.
The final months of 2022 are here, and just like the first portion of the year, it is jam packed in an increasingly cluttered environment for new releases. Instead of being overwhelmed, use this guide to help you navigate through the crush of titles, with the first 20 albums listed considered some of the top releases.
Adam Hood, Ags Connolly, Alex Williams, Billy Joe Shaver, Blackberry Smoke, Brennen Leigh, Brent Cobb, Brit Taylor, Caitlin Rose, Caleb Caudle, Channing Wilson, Charley Crockett, Colter Wall, Courtney Patton, Dailey & Vincent, Dale Watson, Dierks Bentley, Dropkick Murphy's, Emily Nenni, Flatland Cavalry, Gabe Lee, Hellbound Glory, Hillgrass Bluebilly Records, Jake Worthington, James Hand, Jason Hawk Harris, John Fullbright, Johnny Cash, Johnny Falstaff, Jordan Nix, Julie Roberts, Kendell Marvel, Lainey Wilson, Marty Stuart, Miranda Lambert, Nikki Lane, Paul Cauthen, Randy Rogers Band, RL Burnside, Shooter Jennings, Slackeye Slim, Sturgill Simpson, Sunny Sweeney, Town Mountain, Trampled by Turtles, Turnpike Troubadours, Tyler Childers
It’s going to be hard for some distinguishing music fans to acknowledge that the paradigm in mainstream country is shifting. At this point, lashing out at any artist on corporate radio is an act of muscle memory, and often unlearning those motions is harder than learning them. This most certainly doesn’t mean there still isn’t […]
George Strait doesn’t make many public appearances these days after officially retiring from the road. But he’ll be making a “special appearance” at the inaugural Legends of Music Row Festival set to transpire October 13-15 in Key West, Florida at the Coffee Butler Amphitheater.
Billy Currington, Blackberry Smoke, Brice Long, Brooks & Dunn, Buddy Cannon, Casey Beathard, Craig Morgan, David Allan Coe, Dean Dillon, George Strait, Jamey Johnson, Jerry Jeff Walker, Jim "Moose" Brown, Jimmy Buffett, Josh Martin, Key West, Lainey Wilson, Legends of Music Row Fest, Marla Cannon Goodman, Randall King, Ronnie Dunn, Scotty Emerick, Shel Silverstein
There are many festivals out there now catering to independent country and Americana. But in three short seasons and amid a pandemic, Under The Big Sky Fest has quickly made the case for being the biggest and most important of all off the strength of its lineups.
Adia Victoria, Austin Tripp, Cameron Duddy, Chris Claridy, Cody Jinks, Cole Swindell, Cowboy Eddie Long, Dave Simonett, Erin Vaincourt, Evan Felker, Hannah King, Helnore Highwater Band, Hogslop String Band, Jaime Wyatt, Jeremy Ivey, Jess Carson, Lainey Wilson, Leah Blevins, Lord Huron, Luke Cutchen, Margo Price, Mark Wystrach, Michelle Rivers, Morgan Wade, Nick Shoulders, Paul Cauthen, Shakey Graves, Sierra Ferrell, Sierra Hull, The Black Pumas, Tim Helnore, Trampled by Turtles, Tre Burt, Turnpike Troubadours, Under The Big Sky Fest, Warren Zeiders, Zach Bryan
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, Blackberry Smoke, Carly Pearce, Gary Overton, Hailey Whiters, Jada E. Watson, Jamey Johnson, Jason Isbell, Josh Abbott Band, Kacey Musgraves, Keith Hill, Lainey Wilson, Luke Combs, Maren Morris, Midland, Morgan Wallen, Orville Peck, Paige Davis, Palomino Fest, Sierra Ferrell, Sturgill Simpson, The Avett Brothers, tomatoGate, Turnpike Troubadours, Tyler Childers, Under The Big Sky Fest, Wheeler Walker Jr., Whiskey Myers, Willie Nelson, Zach Bryan
For 10 years now, Dixon, California native Jon Pardi has been a bright spot in the mainstream of country, doing his damnedest to keep it real with ample fiddle and steel guitar, and songs that go a little deeper than many of his mainstream counterparts.
“It’s always going to evolve, but it seems to return to its roots, and I think that’s what’s happening now.” This was the assessment of country legend and “Class of ’89” member Clint Black during a recent appearance on Tracy Lawrence’s “Honky Tonkin'” radio show.
Marty Stuart’s long-awaited Congress of Country Music in his hometown of Philadelphia, Mississippi is finally set to open in 2022. the $30 million project encompassing some 50,000 square feet of total space opened in incremental phases.
Billy Strings, Colt Clark and the Quarantine Kids, Congress of Country Music, Connie Smith, Dr Dan Barnard, Emmylou Harris, Jontavious Willis, Lainey Wilson, Late Night Jam, Marcus King, Marty Stuart, Marty Stuart Congress of Country Music, Williams and Ree
Genre is not really the big issue with “Humble Quest.” It’s the energy, or lack thereof, and the generally uninspired matter-of-fact approach to the lyrics and really the music too that make Humble Quest just kind of pedestrian, especially for pop country.
Shit!No, not necessarily these nominations. Well, kind of the nominations as well. But the fact that by some obligatory sense of duty by the powers vested in me as the owner/operator of a country music website, I must convey the nominees of the 2022 ACM Awards, which have fallen so far down in relevancy they’re […]
ACM Awards, Ashley McBryde, Brooks and Dunn, Brothers Osborne, Caitlyn Smith, Carly Pearce, Chris Stapleton, Chris Young, Elvie Shane, Gabby Barrett, Lady A, Lainey Wilson, Luke Combs, Maren Morris, Miranda Lambert, Old Dominion, Thomas Rhett, Walker Hayes
Many independent country music fans and Americana nerds will never admit to it, but the simple fact is that mainstream country music has been on a painfully slow, but palpable improvement track since about 2015 when Bro-Country hit its peak.
Ashley McBryde, Buy Dirt, Carly Pearce, Ernest, Florida Georgia Line, Flower Shops, George Strait, Grand Ole Opry, Jon Pardi, Jordan Davis, Kane Brown, Lainey Wilson, Michael Ray, Morgan Wallen, Sam Hunt, Whiskey and Rain, Whiskey Sour
In what is quickly becoming both one of the biggest and most important festivals in independent country and Americana in just its third year, Under The Big Sky Fest in Whitefish, Montana has announced its 2022 lineup for July 15-17, and once again it’s a doozy.
American Aquarium, Cody Jinks, Emily Clark, Hannah King, Jaime Wyatt, Jamey Johnson, Lainey Wilson, Leah Blevins, Lord Huron, Michelle Rivers, Midland, Morgan Wade, Nick Shoulders, Paul Cauthen, Sierra Ferrell, The Lil Smokies, Trampled by Turtles, Turnpike Troubadours, Under The Big Sky Fest, Zach Bryan
If you’ve been waiting for the right opportunity to catch the Turnpike Troubadours on their reunion tour and got locked out of the first round of shows due to the crazy run on tickets, the opportunities to see them live just got a lot more lucrative.
Aaron Lewis, Chris Colston, Darci Carlson, Ella, Flatland Cavalry, Gordys Hwy 30 Music Fest, Granger Smith, Jackalope Jamboree, Jesse Daniel, Koe Wetzel, Kolby Cooper, Lainey Wilson, MIke and the Moonpies, Miranda Lambert, Mitchell Tenpenny, Morgan Wade, Pecos and the Rooftops, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Rob Leines, Sam Hunt, Sam Riggs, Shane Smith and the Saints, Tim McGraw, Turnpike Troubadours, Under The Big Sky Festival, Willie Nelson, Windy City Smokeout, Zach Bryan
If 90% of mainstream country music is bad, then it stands to reason that 10% of it must be good, or at least decent. So under the philosophy of celebrating what stands out in hopes it sustains, the idea that mainstream country fans deserve good music too, and to not be independent music music snobs […]
Alan Jackson, Canaan Smith, Carly Pearce, Carrie Underwood, Cody Johnson, Eric Church, Hailey Whitters, Jack Ingram, Jon Randall, Lainey Wilson, Midland, Miranda Lambert, Parker McCollum, Riley Green, Travis Tritt
There is just something that makes the elements of country music exceptionally complimentary to Christmas carols and Holiday music. The sense of comfort and home that is conferred by country music is similar to the one many feel listening to Christmas songs.
April Verch, Brian Callihan, Chris Canterbury, Christmas, Cody Johnson, Cody Webb, Cowboy Mouth, Curtis Grimes, Darryl Worley, David Adam Byrnes, Doug Stone, Drake Milligan, Eric Strickland, Erin Enderlin, Holly Tucker, India Ramey, Jay Bragg, JD Shelburne, Jenee Fleenor, Joe Newberry, Jordan Robert Kirk, Josh Turner, Lainey Wilson, Lori McKenna, Makenzie Phipps, Mary Sarah, Mikayla Lane, Morgan Wade, Nashvillains, Nefesh Mountain, Pistol Annies, Randall King, Randy Travis, Reba McEntire, Rhonda Vincent, Skip Ewing, Steve Warnier, Tami Neilson, Tammy Rogers, Thomm Jutz, We Banjo 3, William Michael Morgan
These are pop stars using the country format for attention and notoriety. And no different than Bebe Rexha, Gwen Stefani, Pink, and other pop stars who collaborated with more native country acts and usurped attention from country’s women, their appearance on country radio is problematic.
A Grammy Awards screening committee who must make the tough decisions of which albums are considered “country” in the ever-mutating world of popular music has deemed that the latest album from Kacey Musgraves called Star-Crossed should not be eligible for ‘Best Country Album.’
The implications here are much bigger than radio. Lainey Wilson is one of these artists that helping to symbolize a return to country’s roots in the mainstream, evidenced by her well-received new record ‘Sayin’ What I’m Thinkin’.’ Hopefully this #1 is the first of many for Lainey Wilson.
The fourth season of the Paramount Network’s neo-Western Yellowstone starring Kevin Costner and created by Taylor Sheridan is finally set to premier on November 7th. And along with it, you can also expect a big boost for the independent country artists and songs…
It’s a rite of passage in country music, and a barometer of success. Ashley McBryde announced a two-night Ryman Auditorium residency on August 26th and 27th, and the dates have since sold out. So now they have added a 3rd date.
One of the most important young bands in Texas country is back with a new song out, and a new album on the way. The song is called “Some Things Never Change,” and the album is called “Welcome to Countryland.” It comes as the band looks to take their music to the next level.
Kip Moore has always been a wild one in mainstream country. It’s certainly hard to fault him for who he’s chosen to open on his upcoming 20-city “The How High Tour,” looking well beyond the stable of uninspiring mainstream up-and-comers.
To be country again, you had to have been country in the first place, at least at some point. And country is as country does. You want to be country? Then be country. Don’t tell us about being country. Chances are if you’re telling us how country you are, it’s because it’s not self-evident you’re country.