Monday, October 14, 2019

The Time Jumpers Officially Add Versatile Vocalist Wendy Moten To The Band

The Time Jumpers, Nashville's preeminent Wester swing band, have added a new band member.  Since lead female vocalist Dawn Sears passed away from cancer at the much-too-young age of 53 back in 2014, the band had not filled her spot and had rotated some guest singers through their appearances.  That changed a few weeks back when vocalist Wendy Moten was officially invited to join the band and was welcomed with a roaring round of applause at 3rd & Lindsley in Nashville, TN, the every-Monday night home to The Time Jumpers.

The current edition of The Time Jumpers includes 10 incredible musicians. They are Vince Gill (vocals, electric and acoustic guitars), Doug Green (vocals, acoustic rhythm guitar), Paul Franklin (steel guitar), Brad Albin (upright bass), Larry Franklin (vocals, fiddle), Andy Reiss (electric guitar), Kenny Sears (vocals, fiddle), Joe Spivey (vocals, fiddle), Jeff Taylor (accordion, piano), and Billy Thomas (vocals, drum), and now... Wendy Moten (vocals).

The Memphis-born Moten has earned a vast collection of professional credits in Contemporary, R&B, Jazz, Rock, and Country since launching her career with her self-titled debut record (EMI) in 1992. That album produced two Billboard charting singles, including the enduring ballad “Come In Out of the Rain” and the up-tempo dance hit “Step by Step.” She's toured with Michael Bolton, Julio Iglesias and Eric Clapton and collaborated on recordings with the likes of Stevie Wonder, Michael McDonald and John Oates. 

Here's her covering Lee Ann Womack's "King of Broken Hearts" this last Monday night, showing off those incredible vocal chops: 

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Write You A Song Podcast - An Interview With Brandy Clark

We share another new podcast from host Tom Mailey from Bonneville radio station New Country 105.1 KNCI in Sacramento. Tom is a country radio veteran with over 30 years of experience in Seattle and Sacramento and a key partner in our Golf & Guitars Children's Charity Music Festival, a little event in our twelfth year that has raised well north of a million bucks for kids and individuals with disabilities. It highlights the songwriters in our industry and is entitled Write You a Song. It's his hope that this podcast will shine a little overdue spotlight on the talented men and women who, mostly behind the scenes, write the songs that become part of our lives. You know their words and music, but maybe not their names: Write You a Song will feature some of country music’s biggest songwriters--like Jeffrey Steele, Brett Warren, Ashley McBryde, Tim Nichols and more.

Singer/songwriter Brandy Clark has released 2 critically acclaimed albums and scored a handful of hits writing for other artists, including Sheryl Crow, Miranda Lambert, The Band Perry, Reba McEntire, LeAnn Rimes, Billy Currington, Darius Rucker, and Kacey Musgraves. But she hasn't yet had the widespread commercial success other songwriters have had, and believe it or not, that's just fine with her. She has performed on popular TV shows including: The Ellen DeGeneres Show , Good Morning America, and The Late Show with David Letterman. She was also nominated for Best New Artist category at the 2015 Grammy Awards. Here, she talks about her start in music, her college formative years and how she approaches songwriting. 

New Music Video From Randy Rogers Band - "I'll Never Get Over You"

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Brothers Osborne, Hank Williams, Willie Nelson and Patsy Cline Among Black Friday Record Store Day Releases

After an underwhelming list of country music and Americana vinyl releases on Record Store Day earlier this year, it's good to see that the Black Friday version of the same day coming up in November, while light on quantity, has some big names on it that music collector's will be excited about.  An early list of releases include some of the following roots music names:

Live at the Ryman - Brothers Osborne - EMI Nashville - 2 x LP - RSD Exclusive - 2500 qty
Sweet Dreams: The Complete Decca Masters 1960-1963 - Patsy Cline - Third Man Records - 3 x LP - 1000 qty
New Year's in New Orleans - Roll Up '78 and Light Up '79 - The Marshall Tucker Band - Ramblin Records - 2 x LP- 1000 qty
"Red Bows For A Blue Girl" / "Holly, Carol, Candy and Joy" - JD McPherson - New West Records - 7" Vinyl - 1500 qty
"Sometimes Even I Can Get Too High" b/w "It's All Going To Pot" (w/ Merle Haggard) - Willie Nelson - Legacy - 7" Vinyl - RSD Exclusive - 4000 qty
Early Songs and Rarities - The Record Company - Concord Records - LP - 1000 qty
"Western Stars" b/w "The Wayfarer" - Bruce Springsteen - Legacy - 7" Vinyl - RSD Exclusive - 4750 qty
North Carolina Songbook - Steep Canyon Rangers - Yep Roc Records - LP - 1000 qty
The 1940 Recordings - Hank Williams - BMG Rights Management - 7" Vinyl - RSD Exclusive - 2500 qty

Vinyl has made a massive comeback and is poised to surpass dollar sales in CD's this year or next. Vinyl records earned $224.1 million (on 8.6 million units) in the first half of 2019, closing in on the $247.9 million (on 18.6 million units) generated by CD sales. Vinyl revenue grew by 12.8% in the second half of 2018 and 12.9% in the first six months of 2019, while the revenue from CDs barely budged. If these trends hold, records will soon be generating more money than compact discs.

Record Store Day was held on Saturday, April 13, 2019 earlier this year and has this second large album release date to coincide with the largest shopping day in the country. According to the site: 
"Traditionally, Black Friday was about super-cheap prices on mass-produced goods and primarily took place in mails and big box stores. In some places, that's what this is still about. But we really like the idea of a shopping season, especially when that shopping is, at its heart, a way to show the people you like that you like them. (And a way for them to show you. Gift-getting is awesome, too.)
With that mindset, RSD works with labels, artists, managers and distribution companies who feel the same, and puts together a list of titles for that season that are available at participating record stores. They come out on Black Friday (11/29 this year) but may be available at record stores throughout the rest of the year based on availability. 

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Dillon Carmichael To Drop New EP I Do For You On Oct. 18

Artist: Dillon Carmichael
Album: I Do For You
Label: Riser House Records
Release date: October 18, 2019

Dillon Carmichael, the new up-and-coming baritone and former security guard at the Grand Ole Opry from Riser House Records, will be following up his critically-acclaimed 2018 debut album, Hell on an Angel, with an EP on 10/18 titled I Do For You.

In an interview with the Sarasota Herald-Tribune, Carmichael says, "“I Do for You,” I wrote that song about four or five years ago about my co-writer Jimmy Melton and his wife. That’s what inspired the song, but I now relate to that song myself in my relationship. When I wrote it, I didn’t have a relationship. That song has had I think now four different versions recorded — there’s a slow version, there’s a faster version, there’s a little more of a rock version and there’s the version that is now very ’90s country, uptempo. But there’s been a lot of different versions of it, and I believe that songs have a life of their own. It just had to take a few years for this song to come out, but I know that this song is very, very special." 

While his debut album was produced by Dave Cobb, Carmichael has a different producer helming his second project.  "It’s a different producer by the name of Phil O’Donnell, who also produced Craig Morgan, just to name one of a few. In comparison to the album stylistically, you’re going to more find more tempo in this album. Mainly from my perspective, the added tempo feel to the new album is strictly for the live show’s purposes. I take my live show very, very serious and the one thing that my live show is lacking is tempo. So we focused on that on this new record when there wasn’t so much tempo on the first album. It’s still very much the country and Southern rock influence, just a little more tempo and a different production style as well."

Along with “99 Problems” — which draws its title inspiration from the Jay Z song and was written by Dan Isbell, Rhett Akins, and Casey Beathard — the EP includes a song that Carmichael wrote (the title track “I Do for You”), and a Chris Stapleton composition, “Feel That Way Again,” co-written with Brice Long.

Track listing:
I Do For You
99 Problems (Fish Ain't One)
It's Your Fault
Hung Up On You
Feel That Way Again

Saturday, October 5, 2019

New Music Video From Austin Jenckes - "Never Left Memphis"

The Mavericks Cover Their Heroes and Inspirations on Nov. 1 Release of Play the Hits

Artist: The Mavericks
Album: Play the Hits
Label: Mono Mundo
Release date: November 1, 2019

“As musicians, you are always listening to other songs and you find inspiration and you talk about, ‘Oh man, one day we’re going to record this.’ But other things get in the way. You hear every reason in the world as to why not do a covers record, but now we’re in charge, so if we’re not going to do it now, when the hell are we going to?” The Mavericks lead singer Raul Malo told Rolling Stone. "You see those in the truck stops. ‘So-and-So Artist of Yesteryear Plays the Hits,’ and it’s some awful recording they were forced to do, and they’re selling for 3.99,” Malo laughs. “This is basically our version of that record, but hopefully with a little more care, and certainly more thought put into it.”

Three decades in, The Mavericks are as popular as ever, with a diverse and devoted following. Despite this covers album, they’ve refused to be a nostalgia act. “People come and yell for the newer songs,” enthuses longtime keyboardist Jerry Dale McFadden. Drummer and co-founder Paul Deakin has a perspective on the durability of the band: “The reason for our longevity is that we’ve been able to take control of the music we play, how we play it, and where and when we play it. We’ve made enough mistakes once, twice or three times, but now we run the show. We can keep the creative spark that’s so central to what we do.”

To celebrate their 30th anniversary, and pay tribute to artists and songs that have been part of the journey, the Mavericks give us a brand new album called Play the Hits, featuring songs they cut their teeth on, all made famous by other people, disassembled and totally reimagined by the Mavericks as a testament to how great the songs are and how the band can get inside the material and make it their own.

“The Mavericks in a way has been our experiment,” muses Raul. “It’s the ‘why not’ band. Why not just do it? It’s more fun that way. We’re not beholden to any one genre. We’re not beholden to anything. And you know, all it has to do is just sound good.” Yes, that’s about it.

Track listing and songwriter credits:

Swingin’ (John David Anderson, Lionel A Delmore)
Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way (Waylon Jennings)
Blame It On Your Heart (Harlan Howard, Kostas Lazarides)
Don’t You Ever Get Tired (Of Hurting Me) (Hank Cochran)
Before The Next Teardrop Falls (Vivian Keith, Ben Peters)
Hungry Heart (Bruce Springsteen)
Why Can’t She Be You (Hank Cochran)
Once Upon A Time (feat. Martina McBride) (Barney Ales, Dave Hamilton, Clarence Paul, William Stevenson)
Don’t Be Cruel (Otis Blackwell, Elvis Presley)
Blue Eyes Crying In The Rain (Fred Rose)
I’m Leaving It Up To You (Don Harris, Dewey Steven Terry) 

Friday, October 4, 2019

New Documentary The Gift: The Journey of Johnny Cash To Be Released On Nov. 11

Fresh off of being featured prominently in Ken Burns' Country Music documentary series for PBS, Johnny Cash is being featured in another in The Gift: The Journey of Johnny Cash, a new documentary from director Thom Zimny that premieres on YouTube Originals on Nov. 11. The film, which was created with the full cooperation of the Cash estate and is rich in recently-discovered archival materials, brings Cash the man out from behind the legend.

Helmed by the Emmy- and Grammy-winning director Zimny, the 90-minute film features a wealth of recently discovered archival materials and includes interviews with family members as well as several of Cash’s musical collaborators and friends, including fellow Country Music Hall of Fame member Emmylou Harris, who says, “He had a message and his message was the truth about being alive in this world.”
Taking the remarkable Folsom Prison recording as a central motif and featuring interviews with family and celebrated collaborators, the documentary explores the artistic victories, the personal tragedies, the struggles with addiction, and the spiritual pursuits that colored Johnny Cash’s life.

The documentary originally made its debut in March at the SXSW Film Festival and also screened recently at the Telluride Film Festival as part of the event’s Backlot Series. The Gift: The Journey of Johnny Cash is also set to screen at the 50th Annual Nashville Film Festival on Monday, October 7th.

You can check out the movie trailer below. 

New Music Video From Sarah Darling - "Country Roads" (with Kenny Foster)

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Early Recordings From Loretta Lynn and Jan Howard Being Released By Jasmine Records

Artists: Loretta Lynn & Jan Howard
Album: Honky Tonk Girls - Complete Recordings, 1958-1962
Label: Jasmine Records
Release date: October 2019

Jasmine Record's commitment to classic country music has always been at the forefront of what they do and with the recent release of Ken Burns' Country Music documentary on PBS, it's appropriate that this release from two of country music's women pioneers is seeing a release. This month they introduced a new series that focuses on the great country ladies of the 50s and early 60s, with a superb compilation that brings together the early recordings of two of the genre's more revered artists - Loretta Lynn and Jan Howard.

Loretta and Jan (wife of noted songwriter Harlan Howard) both made their first records in the late 1950s and happily, both are still alive and still occasionally releasing new music in the 21st century.

In this collection you will find the tracks on which both women built their reputations - among them all of Loretta's early sides for the small Zero label, and all of Jan's solo recordings for Challenge and Sundown. The tracks include many early hits by both, including 'I'm A Honky Tonk Girl' and 'Success' from Loretta and 'The One You Slip Around With' and 'Pick Me Up On Your Way Down' from Jan.

The style of these tracks and others here is pure unadulterated honky tonk with fiddles, steel guitars and none of the smoothing or sweetening that 'The Nashville Sound' was built around.

Two living legends paid tribute to here in one great collection - remastered and made for anyone who enjoy vintage country music as it's supposed to sound.

New Music Video From Jon Pardi - "Tequila Little Time"