Monday morning (8-16) was a moment of firsts for the Country Music Hall of Fame announcing their inductees for the 2021 class. It was the first time in 11 years more than three people were inducted, and the first time both a drummer, and surprisingly, a steel player have made it into the Hall.
Robert’s Western World has been home to the Don Kelley Band for a quarter century. Though not as flashy or well-known as some of the other bands that blew up from the Robert’s stage, those who know Robert’s and The Don Kelley band know just how important the band has been to keeping true country alive on Lower Broadway.
BR549, Brazilbilly, Brennen Leigh, Brent Mason, Daniel Donato, David Byrd, Don Kelley, Guthrie Trapp, JD Simo, JesseLee Jones, Johnny Hiland, Joshua Hedley, Paul Cook, Redd Volkaert, Robert's Western World, Sarah Gayle Meech, Sid Hudson, The Don Kelley Band
On Saturday, December 21st, 2019, the hottest show in the Live Music Capital of the World commenced at 3:30 in the afternoon, and came with free admission. It was Redd Volkaert’s final Saturday afternoon matinee residency at The Continental Club on South Congress, a spot he’s held for 20-something years.
Austin, TX is losing yet another music legend. The latest to join the stampede out of the Live Music Capital of the World is Grammy winner and guitar-playing legend Redd Volkaert. Renown throughout the country music world and beyond for being one of the greatest Telecaster players in history, Volkaert once played in Merle Haggard’s band.
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. 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 have just been added.
For those searching for something a little more elaborate and offbeat in the country and roots realm that isn’t just another litany of drinking songs and verse/chorus repetitions, this slightly fey, but fully inspired and involved work by Austin-based music composer Graham Reynolds is worthy of a spin.
Let’s be honest, pairing up Robbie Fulks with the sister of Jerry Lee Lewis and having Fulks write songs from her perspective seems like such a strange concept for an album, it’s hard to conceive of releasing such as thing beyond maybe some quirky passion project with a pressing of 250 units for Record Store Day.
The experience of attending the annual Folk Alliance International music festival and conference in Kansas City, MO is not one that could ever be compartmentalized in written form, or in any other form of media for that matter. It’s simply something you dive into and try to take away as much as you can.
10 String Symphony, Adrian + Meredith, Boogat, Folk Alliance, Joey McKenzie, Katie Glassman, Lisa LeBlanc, Molly Tuttle, Next Generation Leahy, Neyla Pekarek, Rachel Baiman, Rachel Laven, Redd Volkaert, Sarah Jane Scouten, Talisk, The Hackensaw Boys, The Western Flyers, Vivian Leva, Wallis Bird
Whitney Rose has relocated to Austin and can be regularly seen playing the famous haunts in the heart of Texas such as Austin’s Continental Club, and Luckenbach. Whitney Rose’s new EP ‘South Texas Suite’ finds her standing on her own two feet as producer, not just songwriter, and putting together what is tantamount to a love letter to her newfound home.
Tuesday, February 17th, 2015 was the time, and the beautiful Paramount Theatre in downtown Austin was the place for the 2nd Annual Ameripolitan Music Awards. Socialites and artists from all over the United States, and a few from foreign lands made their way to the Texas capitol for the festivities.
Amber Digby, Ameripolitan, Big Sandy, Chris Casello, Dale Watson, Elana James, Hot Club of Cowtown, James Burton, James Hand, James White, Joe Ely, Johnny Bush, Paramount Theatre, Paul Pigat, Ray Benson, Redd Volkaert, Rosie Flores, Sarah Gayle Meech, The Broken Spoke, The Cactus Blossoms, The Derailers, Wayne Hancock
It’s about that time of year again to start considering who the Country Music Hall of Fame will include in their list of 2015 inductees. That said, this announcement seems to inch later, and later (and later) each year. Nonetheless, if you want your opinion to amount to anything, you better get it out there early in the year as the people who make the picks for the final ballots and eventually inductees are doing their homework.
Alan Jackson, Brooks & Dunn, Country Music Hall of Fame, David Allan Coe, Don Kelley, Dwight Yoakam, Grady Martin, Gram Parsons, Hank Williams Jr., Jerry Lee Lewis, Jerry Reed, Jesse McReynolds, John Hartford, Johnny Paycheck, Keith Whitley, Kenney Vaughan, Kenny Chesney, Mac McAnally, Mac Wiseman, Pete Drake, Ralph Mooney, Randy Travis, Reba McEntire, Redd Volkaert, Ricky Skaggs, Ronnie Milsap, Sam Bush, The Maddox Brothers & Rose, The Oak Ridge Boys
One of the last remaining bands that still holds onto that spirit that revitalized Lower Broadway and still plays there on a regular basis is Hillbilly Casino. Nearing their 10-year anniversary, the band that can regularly be seen playing Layla’s Bluegrass Inn has released a live album recorded at the Exit Inn called “Live in the USA.” I spoke to the Hillbilly Casino bass player Geoff Firebaugh about the album and Lower Broadway.
BR549, Brent Mason, Dan Huff, Don Kelley, Greg Garing, Harry Fontana, Hillbilly Casino, Jay McDowell, JD Wilkes, Johnny Hiland, Layla's, lower broadway, Nic Roulette, NIck Curran, Paul Birch, Redd Volkaert, Robert's Western World, Sarah Gayle Meech, Th' Legendary Shack Shakers, The Bluegrass Inn, The Don Kelley Band, The Eskimo Brothers, Yelawolf
Tuesday, February 18th was the inaugural Ameripolitan Music Awards at the Wyndham Garden Hotel in Austin, TX. To see a complete list of winners, a play by play account of the night, and more pictures, please check out the 2014 Ameripolitan Awards LIVE Blog. Here are some photographs of the night from photographer C. C. Ekström of the excellent website Almost Out Of Gas.
2014, Ameripolitan, Ameripolitan Music Awards, Big Sandy, Dale Watson, Dawn Sears, Earl Poole Ball, Elizabeth Cook, James Hand, Jason Roberts, Jim Heath, Johnny Bush, Mike Bernal, Mojo Nixon, Pearls Mahone, Redd Volkaert, Reverend Horton Heat, Rosie Flores, Sarah Gayle Meech, Tonya Watts, Wayne Hancock, Whitey Morgan
What do we mean when we say “country” music? Well take a listen to Mississippi native and Texas transplant Jason Eady’s new album AM Country Heaven, and that should give you the strongest of all possible clues. And what do people mean when they say “Texas” country? This album isn’t a bad example of that either. Where I distance from a lot of other music writers is in the project’s originality.
James Hand is like James Hand, wholly unique, yet hauntingly familiar in the way his songs seem like they were written just for you and sound like old memories, and how his presence warms the soul. Or you could just listen to Willie Nelson who says it both succinctly and completely, “James Hand is the real deal!”