Saturday, July 6, 2019

Jasmine Records Releases New Project From Legend Lefty Frizzell

Artist: Lefty Frizzell
Album:With You Always - The US Country Chart Hits, 1950-1959 Plus!
Label: Jasmine Records
Release date: Available Now

Considered by many country fans (and also many country artists) to be the father of modern country singing, Lefty Frizzell came seemingly out of nowhere in the late 1940s to influence a massive number of future country icons, from George Jones, Merle Haggard and Willie Nelson to Randy Travis and Dwight Yoakam - just a few of the superstars of country who have recorded Lefty's compositions.

A superb songwriter and gifted vocalist whose warm intimate phrasing has been frequently imitated but always remains uniquely his, Lefty's biggest hits are still performed and still enjoyed almost 70 years after his breakthrough in 1949.

This Jasmine collection features every one of Lefty's country chart hits from the first 13 years of his recording career - a surprisingly small number, given the extent of his influence - and augments them with a cross section of the very best 'other' sides he made during his first 13 (of 23) years as a Columbia recording star. Many of his most iconic songs in the entire history of Country music can be found and enjoyed here

Track Listing

1. IF YOU'VE GOT THE MONEY (I've Got The Time)
2. I LOVE YOU A THOUSAND WAYS
3. LOOK WHAT THOUGHTS WILL DO
4. SHINE SHAVE SHOWER (It's Saturday)
5. I WANT TO BE WITH YOU ALWAYS
6. ALWAYS LATE (With Your Kisses)
7. MOM AND DAD'S WALTZ
8. TRAVELLIN' BLUES
9. GIVE ME MORE, MORE, MORE (Of Your Kisses)
10. HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE (To Stop Loving You)
11. DON'T STAY AWAY (Till Love Grows Cold)
12. FOREVER (And Always)
13. I'M AN OLD, OLD MAN (Trying To Live While I Can)
14. (Honey Baby, Hurry!) BRING YOUR SWEET SELF BACK TO ME
15. RUN 'EM OFF
16. I LOVE YOU MOSTLY
17. CIGARETTES AND COFFEE BLUES
18. THE LONG BLACK VEIL

BONUS TRACKS
19. MY BABY'S JUST LIKE MONEY
20. IF YOU CAN SPARE THE TIME (I Won't Miss The Money)
21. JUST CAN'T LIVE THAT FAST (Any More)
22. NO ONE TO TALK TO (But The Blues) - Lefty Frizzell And Shirley Caddell
23. TIME OUT FOR THE BLUES
24. YOU'RE HUMBUGGIN' ME
25. WHAT YOU GONNA DO LEROY
26. THAT'S ALL I CAN REMEMBER
27. HEAVEN'S PLAN
28. STRANGER



Friday, July 5, 2019

Hear It Here: Ed Sheeran, Bruno Mars & Chris Stapleton Collaborate On "BLOW"

Ed Sheeran, Bruno Mars, and Chris Stapleton have shared their new joint song “BLOW.” It’s taken from Sheeran’s next LP, No.6 Collaborations Project, which is out July 12 via Atlantic. As the name suggests, the album features Ed working with different collaborators and featured artists on each track.


Monday, July 1, 2019

Crystal Gayle To Release First Album in Sixteen Years in September

Artist: Crystal Gayle
Album: You Don't Know Me
Release date: 9/16/19

Fresh off her recent induction into Grand Ole Opry membership, Crystal Gayle has announced that her first new album in 16 years You Don’t Know Me will be out September 6, 2019. The album features the first recorded song ever between her and sisters Loretta Lynn and Peggy Sue Wright.

Gayle began her career in the 1960s performing in the background of her sibling's bands, most notably Loretta Lynn. It was Lynn who helped her sister sign a recording contract with Decca Records in 1970 where she enjoyed minor success. Encouraged by Lynn to develop her own musical identity, Gayle signed a new recording contract with United Artists Records in 1974. A collaboration with producer Allen Reynolds brought forth major success by shifting her music towards a country pop style. In 1975, "Wrong Road Again" became Gayle's first major hit. However, it was in 1977 when Gayle achieved her biggest success with the single "Don't It Make My Brown Eyes Blue". The song topped the Billboard country chart, crossed over to the top five of the Billboard Hot 100, and became a major international hit.

Gayle continued having major country pop success from the late 1970s and through late 1980s. Her biggest hits included "Ready for the Times to Get Better" (1977), "Talking in Your Sleep" (1978), "Half the Way" (1979), "You and I" (1982), and "The Sound of Goodbye" (1984). In 1982, Gayle collaborated with Tom Waits on the soundtrack for Francis Ford Coppola's film One from the Heart. In the mid 1980s she and Gary Morris recorded the theme song for Another World and would appear in several of the show's episodes. Throughout the 1990s Gayle shifted artistic directions by recording various genres of music. This included an album of inspirational music entitled Someday (1995) and an album of standards called Crystal Gayle Sings the Heart and Soul of Hoagy Carmichael (1999). Her last studio album appeared in 2003 and Gayle has since continued to tour throughout the world.

Friday, June 28, 2019

Interview Flashback - An Exclusive Interview With The Band Perry

I have been blessed to write contributions/reviews/interviews/opinion pieces for several country music and roots-oriented websites and publications over the years including Saving Country Music, Nashville Scene, Country California, Country Weekly, American Noise, The 9513 and Engine 145. As a regular contributor to the last two in that list, I did close to a 100 interviews with different artists- and since both of those great sites have come down, I will reprint some of those interviews here to give them a home in perpetuity. This interview was originally published in May 2010 on The 9513.

Sibling and family acts are part of the fabric of country music going way back to The Carter Family and stretching all the way forward to current new acts such as Sons of Sylvia and The Harters.

For siblings Kimberly, Reid and Neil Perry- all member of The Band Perry- the evolution to a family country band wasn’t as much of a conscious decision but as a natural evolution. They were all active and gifted musicians at very early ages and only graduation from high school for their youngest member kept them from hitting the scene earlier.

The Band Perry’s first single, “Hip To My Heart”, is racing up the charts knocking on the Top 20 and their five single EP became available this month. The trio took a few minutes to talk with The 9513 about their music background, working together as a family and how they approach songwriting.

KEN MORTON, JR.: For someone who hasn’t heard your background before, talk about cutting your teeth musically in Alabama.

KIMBERLY PERRY: It’s kind of funny. I got started when I was fifteen. Reid was ten. Neil was eight and we were down in Mobile. But we really feel like music got started way before that as individuals. Not necessarily that we were playing in bands before that time, but you can go back and watch home videos of all three of us and we’re all entertainers in our own rights as kids. And then about ten years ago, each of us formed our own individual bands. I was the first to form a band and I was the lead singer of a group of high school buddies- all guys. Reid and Neil’s first job was tuning guitar strings and polishing drum cymbals for me and my guys. They were my little roadies. (Laughing) They looked great in their matching bowl cuts. They did a great job for us, however. The guys in my band were pseudo big-brothers for Reid and Neil. Just by nature of following the older kids’ footsteps, they put together their own little bands at eight and ten. Neil was the drummer at the time. They found a lead singer and an electric guitar player for their little band and opened dates for the band that I had. We all travelled as a family and secretly, their band was more talented than mine. I don’t admit that too much, but they really were. I was their musical director and I think we all knew that we would do a three-piece musical family band at some point. But we just had to wait for the right moment for the boys to get a little taller. We started as The Band Perry in the Carolinas five years ago. We were hired by Coke and by Wal-Mart to do the New Faces Of Country Music Tour. It was acoustic sets that we would do in Wal-Mart’s. And it was the first foray into the music business for the boys and I. It was a great experience for the boys and I to open all those dates and meet country radio and introduce us to country radio for the first time. And that’s where we found out country music is where our hearts are and really where we belong. And that in a nutshell, is our story over the last decade.

KMJ: You might not have a comparison, but how is the dynamic of working as siblings versus working with people who aren’t siblings?

NEIL PERRY: We’ve been talking about that recently. We don’t know how other bands can do it without the support systems of their families. When one of us is having a bad day, one of us will nudge them and ask them, “What’s wrong?”

KP: We always call them discussions and not necessarily disagreements. (Laughing)

REID PERRY: We’re family and we’re stuck with one-another, so it’s not like we’re going to go anywhere.

KP: We’re really supportive of one-another. I’m really thankful. We’ve just not done it any other way. We’ve always travelled together as family. We know each other on such a deep level. We’ve obviously been around each other our whole lives. There’s certain ways that we have to encourage each other and challenge each other like only family can do. I just don’t know how folks out there do it without family support. Because it’s a crazy pace. It’s a whirlwind business with lots of ups and downs. It’s important to have that family and that middle ground so you’re not on those high highs and low lows. We’re just happy to have each other. Except after about fourteen days on the road when we always revert back to our ten and twelve year old petty arguments. (Laughing)

KMJ: Is it a democracy? Kimberly, do you ever feel like it’s two against one with boys versus girl?

KP: It is a democracy. And the standard rule is that majority rules. Even if there’s something creative that’s up for discussion or a business decision that one person feels a specific way, we always have it up for discussion and we always end up getting on the same page. I don’t thing anybody ever feels railroaded. Everyone has an equal voice on everything. Being the big sister and all, I have to be honest with you; I am the bossiest one in the family.

RP: This is where I’ll have to agree, she is bossy. (Laughing)

KP: It just depends on which day of the week. Reid is definitely the peacemaker, he’s the middle one. He definitely keeps me on a level emotionally.

RP: Kimberly and I are just alike.

NP: They’re the drama in the group. (Laughing)

RP: But Neil is the character of the group. He keeps us laughing out on the road.

KP: As the baby. And you know, we all fill specific roles I think in positive ways. We kind of fill in the gaps of stuff that some of the others might be lacking and such. It’s a cool thing this whole package of a family.

KMJ: “Hip To My Heart” leans on the pop country side of things. On your new EP and on your upcoming album, describe your sound. What will we hear on it?

KP: We have two adjectives to describe our sound and they work hand in hand. We’re definitely a modern throwback. It’s interesting that “Hip To My Heart” is the lightest and most poppy- and in our opinion, the only poppy thing- on the album. But we thought it had just so much energy. We’re 19, 21 and 26 years old and it had a lot of youth about it. It’s a great way to introduce us to the country music family. I am excited as we move forward for listeners to dig into some of the deeper cuts. We’ve actually decided on our second single, a song called, “If I Die Young.” We’re not close to hitting on it yet because we still have a lot more room on “Hip To My Heart.” It’s getting warmer so it’s time to crank down those windows and crank up that song. But we’re really excited for listeners to dig into the rest of that album. We have some interesting layers and some interesting contemplations on this album. It’s such a romantic soundtrack. We touch on everything from talking about death, have a little small-town romance and bring out some sassy numbers like a song called “The Way You Lie.” It’s just a really cool project with flavors for everybody. The boys and I are steeped in old country. We absolutely love the history of this format. Neil, being the mandolin player, loves the bluegrass side of things. I’m just so excited for people to see our roots and see what we’ve cut our teeth on musically. So a modern throwback would be the best description.

KMJ: You guys have written or co-written nearly the entire album. I noticed one of the writers was American Idol judge Kara Dioguardi. Tell me about writing with her and your song “Postcards From Paris.”

RP: Kara was in town in Nashville writing with several country songwriters and artists. Our A&R lady at our label is good friends with Kara. She called us one day and said that Kara had a free afternoon and if we would care to write. That’s the funny thing about writing relationships is you don’t really know how it’s going to turn out. You could write a song or you could just end up going to get a coffee together. Luckily, it worked and we wrote a “Postcard From Paris.” Kara has been so great; she’s almost taken on a big sister role for us. She’s really given us a lot of advice and helped us out and all.

KP: She’s just been so supportive and actually on the local Fox station here in Nashville, she actually sang a bit of our next single, “If I Die Young.” She’s just really loved that from day one. It’s just really cool to see her get into songs that we’re putting out. She really has become sort of The Band Perry’s big sister giving us advice. She’s even helped us so much in the songwriting room. Her songwriting prowess is just so amazing with the breadth of work that she’s done over the years. She definitely came into the songwriting room with a needle and thread and sewed the idea of the song together.

KMJ: Neil, on your website, you mention that each one of you bring a different songwriting skill and strength to each songwriting session. What are those?

NP: Reid is definitely is the rock and roller of the group being a bass player and all. He’s very particular about what he likes and what he doesn’t like in music. Reid will usually bring in a really cool melody of a bass or even a guitar- he plays great guitar as well. Kimberly works on melody as well- she’s actually a melody genius. She’ll bring in something romantic or something really sassy into the room. My role in the writing room is bringing in the lyrics and the string that strings all of our different ideas together. We work really well in the writing room together.

KP: A lot of times a writing session will evolve out of a rehearsal because when the boys and I rehearse as three-piece, we just play the songs we’re going to play in the next set. Then that evolves into playing some old country songs and then turns into stuff for a writing session. So I really believe that the way we bring songs together is just an extension of us jamming. That seems to be the process that works the best for us. It becomes sort of effortless when we do it that way. Songs kind of come out of our fingertips.

KMJ: Things have kind of exploded on country radio for you all so far this year. Has there been any performance highlights for you over the last year?

KP: Yes! We have two, actually. We had our first sold-out shows this year. The first was up in Portland, Oregon back on February 13th. And then we had another sold-out show in Albany. That was just huge for us. It was really unexpected and we have just so much support from those two stations. The crowds were just wonderful. And the other cool thing that we’re starting to see is people singing out the lyrics to “Hip To My Heart.” When we’re doing some of these radio events, the people in the crowd are singing the lyrics of “Hip To My Heart” back to us. And that’s something that we’ve just never experienced before. You’re just not expecting it the first time and it was just a really cool moment for the three of us.

KMJ: What is country music to The Band Perry?

KP: I’m so proud to be part of this era of country music. The three of us talk about this all the time. We feel like it’s the American format. If Tom Petty came out today, where would he fall? He would fall into country music. He would just fall into the rockier and edgier side of things. I think there’s room for everybody in the format. We’ve got things on the rockier side, things on the poppier side and just straight down the middle country music. It really is just a big country format. And what I love about it is each artist and each band are each unique characters. They each fill a specific niche and a specific mini-genre- they’re each unique characters. Miranda Lambert is a very different character than Lady Antebellum. But she fills her niche. Taylor Swift fills the poppier side of things. That’s what we love about it is everybody brings in their own spin and brings in fresh ideas. The Band Perry hopes to bring to country music a niche to be that modern throwback. We want to maintain the roots and traditions of the format- the songs we love. We want to update that in the 2010 era that we’re living in. We’re just so excited to be part of the big country music family.

New Music Video From Tanya Tucker - "Hard Luck"

Monday, June 24, 2019

Exile To Release Double-Album Of Previously-Unheard Demos In July

Artist: Exile
Album: The Garage Tapes
Label: Big Horse Records
Release date: July 13, 2019

A little over forty years have passed and over 8 million records have been sold, including three Gold records and eleven number one hit songs, along with numerous hits on the pop and country chart since Exile band members, Steve Goetzman, Marlon Hargis, J.P. Pennington, Sonny LeMaire and Les Taylor began making music and gathering in a small garage in Lexington, Kentucky making demos of their songs. Until now these recordings have remained unheard by anyone outside the small circle of the band. These particular garage tapes, were recorded between 1979 and 1982 at LEMCO studio in Lexington, Kentucky. The 30 song, two CD compilation is set for release by Big Horse Records in the upcoming weeks for purchase online and on all digital music platforms. 

The compilation includes pop songs as well as several country songs. Capturing these songs from the original source taped required a process known as “baking” to recover each song. Unfortunately, they could not recover the song “Take Me Down” in its entirety, so they included an actual rehearsal version recorded on a boom-box in 1980 prior to leaving L.A. to record it for the album, Don’t Leave Me This Way.

Since there are no demo versions of “Give Me One More Chance,” they have also included a rehearsal version recorded in the same manner on April 24, 1984. You will notice how the song morphed between this version and the final album version.

The band thought it would be interesting for fans to hear a song in the early stages of creation by including J.P. Pennington and Sonny LeMaire performing a very early version of “Keep It In The Middle of The Road from a songwriting cassette tape.

“Exile -The Garage Tapes” Track List:

Side 1:
Red Dancing Shoes (LeMaire / Gray)
There’s A Love (Pennington)
Me And You (Gray)
Your Love Is Everything (Pennington)
Dixie Girl (LeMaire / Paine)
Take Me To The River (Pennington)
Don’t Leave Me This Way (Pennington)
Nobody’s Hero (Pennington / Lawley)
Smooth Sailing (Gray / Slate / Pippin)
Midnight Man (Pennington)
Baby, It’s Me (Gray)
One More Night For Love (LeMaire / Gray / Gray)
Werewolf Of Love (LeMaire / Gray / Blazy)
The High Cost of Leaving (LeMaire / Pennington / Gray)
It Takes Love To Make Love (LeMaire / Gray / Silbar / Lorber)

Side 2:
I Can’t Get Close Enough (Pennington / LeMaire)
It’s You Again (Pennington / LeMaire)
My Hearts In Good Hands (Pennington / LeMaire)
Since You Came In (Pennington / Gray / Seals)
Did You See That Girl (Pennington / LeMaire)
I Can’t Love You Anymore (Pennington / Copeland)
Still So In Love With You (Pennington)
We Can Save Love (LeMaire / Blazy)
Do It All Over Again (Pennington)
Till The Very End (LeMaire / Gray)
The Closer You Get (Pennington / Gray)
Take Me Down (Pennington / Gray)
Give Me One More Chance (Pennington / LeMaire)
Keep It In The Middle Of The Road (Pennington / LeMaire)
Sixteen Tons (Travis)