Yes, Post Malone. The rapper guy and pop star with all those tattoos on his face. He’s one of the biggest artists in all of popular music at the moment. And apparently, he’s a big fan of independent country music. Over the last few weeks he’s been caught repping guys you could list off as your 1A, 1B, and 1C.
Among many other criticisms being lobbed at the 2020 CMA Awards broadcast on Wednesday (11-11), the lack of an In Memoriam segment, and specifically overlooking major deaths in country music such as John Prine, Jerry Jeff Walker, and Billy Joe Shaver have quite a few hopping mad.
Without any physical product being sold yet (it’s still being manufactured), Sturgill Simpson’s surprise bluegrass album Cuttin’ Grass Vol. 1 The Butcher Shoppe Sessions reprising 20 songs from his catalog in bluegrass form sees a surprisingly strong debut in the charts.
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. New songs have just been added.
For those that like to keep up with the doings of guitar player Laur “Little Joe” Joamets—the Estonian ax slinger who set houses on fire behind Sturgill Simpson from 2015 to 2017—he’s formed a new project with Nashville-based and noted blues singer Laura Reed called “Lore.”
In the lengthy letter, Sturgill Simpson talks about when he was first exposed to bluegrass, where he found a renewed passion for it later in life, and how he’s found a renewed passion for music again through bluegrass, and now as an independent artist once again.
With little room for noodling or improvisation, and not a ton of conversation or rehearsal before heading into the studio, Cuttin’ Grass is still finely crafted and deftly executed by all involved, offering good to excellent bluegrass renditions of Sturgill Simpson songs.
Well, Sturgill Simpson was planning to surprise all our asses this Friday, October 16th by releasing his long-anticipated bluegrass record full of acoustic interpretations of some of his most favored songs, but torrent sites in Europe screwed it all up by leaking it early, and now that cats out of the bag.
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.”
The season finale for the Paramount Network’s signature summer series Yellowstone ended in a cliffhanger Sunday night (8-23), and it also ended another successful run for the series in both the ratings department, and in featuring all manner of cool country and roots artists and songs throughout the season.
With mainstream radio offering no outlet for many of the most talented country artists of our generation, it’s often up to word-of-mouth and social media influencers to help spread the word about artists actually worthy of mass consumption. This worked in Colter Wall’s favor when he received a ringing endorsement from Joe Rogan.
Margo Price’s new album That’s How Rumors Get Started was described by American Songwriter as “very un-country.” Talking with The Nashville Scene, Price herself foretells how people will still try to sell her new album as country by trying to use “fancy words.” But she states decisively, “Nope, I made a rock ’n’ roll record.”
Italian film composer Ennio Morricone passed away on Monday (7-6) at the age of 91. And though he will will always be remembered as the definitive mastermind behind the sounds and sonic imagination of the Spaghetti Western, it would be criminal to overlook the influence Morricone had on American country music.
Sure, Shooter Jennings as a record producer is nothing new. What has changed now is being a producer now feels like the primary focus, or at least an equal effort for the second generation performer. And most importantly, that’s where Shooter’s passion is.
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.
Margo Price was ready to issue her third studio album That’s How Rumors Get Started May 8th on her new label of Loma Vista Records. But like some other titles, the decision was made to delay the release due to the uncertainty around COVID-19. Now a new date has been announced, and a new song issued.
Sturgill Simpson will be appearing in a free live stream event via webcast on Friday, June 5th at 7 p.m. Central from the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville. Plus he also has an album on the way of old songs recorded new, and a note on Sturgill coverage moving forward.
Like most every musician, Tyler Childers has been mostly just stewing at home since he’s unable to tour due to COVID-19. But unlike some musicians, home is a special place for Tyler Childers, and in country music. He also explains his recent collarbone injury.
Despite all the success Sturgill Simpson, Jason Isbell and other independent stars have enjoyed, they still haven’t been able to crack the mainstream radio paradigm. Without a million-dollar budget and a nine month commitment to a radio station tour, mainstream country radio just won’t play you. But something inexplicable happened this week.
Multiple dates on the tour had sold out, and certain cities had second shows added, proving the pairing could reach arena capacity. But ultimately, only 12 of the original 43 dates were fulfilled, with the final show happening in Charleston, South Carolina on March 10th.
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
Sturgill Simpson is the latest artist from the country/roots realm to test positive for COVID-19. The songwriter, performer, and producer said in a statement on Saturday (4/11) that he had been suffering from chest pains, fever, and pre-stroke blood pressure levels when his wife took him to a local hospital ER.
Margo Price will release her latest record called That’s How Rumors Get Started on May 8th after moving on from Jack White’s Third Man Records to Loma Vista, an imprint of Concord Records. Margo released her first taste of new music in mid January with the song “Stone Me.” Now we get the first proper single.