Showing posts with label Emmylou Harris. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Emmylou Harris. Show all posts

Apr 25, 2019

Album Review / Will Kimbrough / I Like It Down Here

By Trevor Balthazar

If you were to sit down with Will Kimbrough’s new album & simply glance over the track listing, you could surmise that this is a record of place. Titles like, “I Like It Down Here,” “Alabama (For Michael Donald),” and “When I Get to Memphis” make it abundantly clear that this album is going to be dealing in mostly southern matters.

The ever-consummate sideman, Kimbrough’s years of music with artists such as Rodney Crowell, Emmylou Harris, and Todd Snider are probably impossible not to mention. He’s done solo work, been in groups, written songs for others, produced albums for others, and more. But on I Like It Down Here, we find Kimbrough returning to a very natural version of himself and to a very familiar place, both geographically and emotionally.

The American south is full of things we all love—good music, good food, and good people. This beautiful trifecta is also riddled with bullets of extreme racism, crooked politics, and bad people. Unsurprisingly, Kimbrough’s album echoes these ideas throughout. The lead-off track, “Hey Trouble” is a minor groove about a man lost and, invariably, in trouble. With trouble as his companion throughout the journey, Kimbrough speaks in vaguely heartbroken blues lyrics about the lonesomeness and longing that accompanies a woman gone. If I wanted to wax poetic (or political), I’d tell you that the woman is a metaphor for hope—and that the man left behind is our country, having to deal with the hostile climate we find ourselves in today.

The most interesting lyrical content is delivered in the title track—a greasy creeper about a couple of trashy characters who, unmistakably enjoy their lives in the south. Rife with imagery and language that could be foreign to someone not from down there, the song and message sit in stark contrast to the following track, “Alabama (For Michael Donald)’—a gruesome recounting of the 1981 lynching of a young black man in Mobile, Alabama. These two songs not only define the album, but also the double-edged sword that many from the south have to lay down upon when speaking about where they’re from.


The rest of the album bounces around quite a bit, but has something for most tastes. “I’m Not Running Away” is a jangly pop anthem about getting away from it all; “Salt Water & Sand” is a lilting ode to the gulf shores, and “Anything Helps” is a mid-tempo jaunt about homelessness. 

Lyrically, the album has some bright spots of quirkiness (“I Like It Down Here,” “It’s A Sin”) but is mostly comprised of classic blues-based phrasing and generality—in my opinion, on purpose. Musically, Kimbrough is s fantastic producer and played a myriad of instruments on the album. The songs, though many may be sparse instrumentally, are tightly arranged and well-executed. There’s no over-playing, just tasty riffs and licks—which brings me back to southern food. 

This is an easy afternoon record. If you’ve got nothing to do, put it on and shuck some oysters, stew over a pot of dark gumbo, or crack a beer next to the barbecue pit and you too can ponder where you’re from and what that might mean to you. 

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I Like it Down Here is available now on Amazon, iTunes, and pretty much everywhere you like to consume music.


Jun 19, 2018

Top 10 Biggest Jerks in Folk Music


Some would imagine that the quaint, earnest folk music scene would not be as likely to contain divas and d-bags as the more mainstream genres of music. They'd be wrong. Here are some of the genre's most egregious offenders.

10. Joni Mitchell
Has said Counting Crows cover of "Big Yellow Taxi" is far better than her original.
Before retiring from touring, only played Rascal Flatts songs over the monitors before shows.

9. Hozier
Refuses to play "Take Me to Church" in concert.
Blocks anyone who complains about it on social media.

8. Tracy Chapman
Refuses to play "Fast Car" in concert. 
Only plays "Give Me One Reason" 'in the style of Post Malone.'

7. Bon Iver
Won't apologize for being the godfather of modern hipsterism.
Drives a jacked up Hummer with a Salt Life sticker on the back.

6. Wesley Schultz (The Lumineers)
Constantly rails on millennials despite being one.
Uber driver on the side; car smells like sweaty leather.
Makes fake business cards with different names but his phone number to drop in those "win free lunch" fishbowls.

5. Skyler Skjelset (Fleet Foxes)
Writes shitty pop-country under the pen name Chris DeStefano.
Listens to hick-hop albums loudly on the tour bus.
Slaps people with a fencing glove if they misspell his last name.

4. Damien Rice
Speaks in an unintelligibly thick Irish accent at meet and greets so fans will move along quickly.
Next album will be entirely dirge-style Neil Diamond covers.
Tour rider calls for only "mass-produced light American lagers" to piss off his band.

3. Emmylou Harris
Thought Gram Parsons was a "pretentious dickhead hack" but he paid well. 
Litters.
At shows, she has any fans wearing tennis shoes violently removed and humiliated.

2. Scott Avett (The Avett Brothers)
Wears sweat pants to strip clubs.
Drives with his brights on in fog.
Lays five dollars on the table at restaurants and takes one away for every slight error the server makes. 
Leaves his spit cup in the cup-holder at the movie theater. 

1. Father John Misty

Oh wait… this list is supposed to be satirical.





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*this is, of course, fake news*

May 15, 2015

If Dallas Davidson Had Written These Americana Classics


If Dallas, or other bro-ish songwriters had penned these great Americana tunes...

Turtles All the Way Down
Every time I'm crankin' up my new green Raptor pickup truck
I'm chillin' like a villain cause I'm chromed out and so sweet and so fly
Grappler Nittos, LED, silver gearshift, and HIDs they all changed the game for me
But girl, the only thing I want's your ass tonight

Two More Bottles of Wine
Two guns on my back, tattoos lookin' fine
Haters on Twitter saying I'm out of line
But it's all right 'cause I'm so tight
And I got two more bottles of shine



Cover Me Up
So girl leave your Dukes by the bed/I'm bout to drop tha boom
Till there's an illegitimate child growing there in your womb

The Road Goes on Forever
Down farm road after midnight with some Jeremiah Weed
Drivin' drunk with a big ol' dip and Axe sprayed all over me
She's wearing those old Levis that show off suntanned skin
The bro goes on forever and the party never ends

Pancho & Lefty
Driving gravel roads my bro
Is gonna get your truck in dirt
While you wear your barbed wire tatt
And way too tight Ed Hardy shirt
You weren't your high school's smartest boy
But the most badass one it seems
You give every guy the mad-dog eyes
Never turn off your high beams

Pancho was a country boy
His Ford had flames and polished chrome
Wore his ripped-up studded jeans
To make the hotties sigh and moan
Pancho saw a bae so hot
Down at the Sonic parking lot
He stepped to her and spit some game
Took a Fireball shot

Sep 4, 2014

Austin City Limits Celebrates 40 Years


I don't usually copy and paste press releases, but this seems like something most of you'd like to see!
 


 
 



Austin City Limits Celebrates 40 Years
Two-Hour Primetime 40th Anniversary Special Premieres October 3rd on PBS

Star-Studded Broadcast Features Jeff Bridges, Sheryl Crow, Matthew McConaughey, Willie Nelson, Foo Fighters, Bonnie Raitt, Alabama Shakes, Kris Kristofferson, Emmylou Harris, Buddy Guy, Lyle Lovett, Gary Clark Jr. & many more



Austin, TX—September 4, 2014The landmark PBS series Austin City Limits (ACL) highlights four decades as a music institution with Austin City Limits Celebrates 40 Years, a primetime special honoring the program's milestone 40th anniversary, airing Friday, October 3rd, 9-11pm ET on PBS Arts Fall Festival. With guest hosts Jeff Bridges, Sheryl Crow and Matthew McConaughey, the two-hour broadcast features memorable moments from the trailblazing show's remarkable run, while the brightest stars in the series' history return to the ACL stage for dream duets and choice collaborations. Ready to write the next chapter in its storied history, ACL’s Season 40 premieres on October 4th with an epic hour from an American original, musician/songwriter Beck.

An all-star lineup of ACL royalty pays tribute to the show's enduring legacy with unforgettable music performances in Austin City Limits Celebrates 40 Years. Highlights of the special include the show opener as Bonnie Raitt, Alabama Shakes' Brittany Howard, Jimmie Vaughan and Gary Clark Jr. team up for the Sam & Dave classic “Wrap It Up”. Incredible pairings include ACL Hall of Fame legend Willie Nelson and Emmylou Harris on the Nelson-penned classic “Crazy” and Kris Kristofferson and Sheryl Crow's moving take on his signature “Me and Bobby McGee”. The Foo Fighters honor ACL with a wild rendition of Texas cult hero Roky Erickson's "Two Headed Dog," recorded at the show's original television studio especially for the occasion. Host Jeff Bridges performs the late singer-songwriter Stephen Bruton's song “What A Little Bit of Love Can Do” as a tribute to the influential Austin musician who inspired Bridges’ Oscar-winning portrayal in Crazy Heart. Local legends Joe Ely and Robert Earl Keen showcase their troubadour roots and significance to the Austin music scene. Breakout artists and ACL alumni Alabama Shakes and Gary Clark Jr. give blistering performances that forecast the future of the series. Blues titan Buddy Guy brings it all home with an electrifying take on his “Mary Had A Little Lamb”. The special comes to a close with an all-star reading of two Lone Star classics—a stellar lineup of guitar slingers blaze through the Stevie Ray Vaughan standard “Texas Flood” and the biggest names in music trade verses on the Buddy Holly classic “Not Fade Away", as ACL embraces its past and hints at what is to come.

"This is a huge milestone for us,” says ACL executive producer Terry Lickona, “and this show captures the essence of what Austin City Limits is all about. We set the bar high for this celebration, and we exceeded it! The lineup of talent speaks volumes about the respect that artists have for ACL.”

Artists performing on the special are: Alabama Shakes, Doyle Bramhall II, Jeff Bridges, Gary Clark Jr., Sheryl Crow, Double Trouble, Joe Ely, Mike Farris, Foo Fighters, Grupo Fantasma, Buddy Guy, Emmylou Harris, Robert Earl Keen, Kris Kristofferson, Lyle Lovett, Willie Nelson, Bonnie Raitt, Robert Randolph, Kenny Wayne Shepherd and Jimmie Vaughan.

Austin City Limits Celebrates 40 Years was taped at ACL Live at the Moody Theater, and the program's original television studio, Austin PBS station KLRU's Studio 6A.

Austin City Limits (ACL) is the longest-running music series in American television history and remains the only TV series to be awarded the National Medal of Arts. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the pilot episode taped in 1974 with Willie Nelson. Since its inception, the pioneering music series has become an institution that's helped secure Austin's reputation as the Live Music Capital of the World. The historic KLRU Studio 6A, home to 36 years of ACL concerts, has been designated an official Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Landmark. In 2011, ACL moved to the new venue ACL Live at The Moody Theater in downtown Austin. ACL received a rare institutional Peabody Award for excellence and outstanding achievement in 2012.

Austin City Limits Celebrates 40 Years setlist:
Bonnie Raitt, Brittany Howard, Jimmie Vaughan & Gary Clark Jr. | “Wrap It Up”
Bonnie Raitt | “Your Good Thing (Is About to End)”
Kris Kristofferson & Sheryl Crow | “Me and Bobby McGee”
Alabama Shakes | “Gimme All Your Love”
Jeff Bridges | “What A Little Bit of Love Can Do”
Willie Nelson | “Whiskey River”
Willie Nelson & Lyle Lovett | “Funny How Time Slips Away”
Willie Nelson & Emmylou Harris | “Crazy”
Willie Nelson, Emmylou Harris & Lyle Lovett | “On the Road Again”
Robert Earl Keen & Joe Ely | “The Road Goes On Forever”
Gary Clark Jr. | “Bright Lights”
Foo Fighters | “Two Headed Dog (Red Temple Prayer)”
Sheryl Crow |“Can't Cry Anymore”
Doyle Bramhall & Sheryl Crow | “I'm Leaving”
Grupo Fantasma | “Mulato”
Jimmie Vaughan & Bonnie Raitt | “The Pleasure's All Mine”
Kenny Wayne Shepherd & Mike Farris | “House Is Rockin'”
Robert Randolph | “Pride and Joy”
Buddy Guy | “Mary Had A Little Lamb”
All-Star Finale | “Texas Flood”
All-Star Finale | “Not Fade Away”

Oct 28, 2013

Radio Then vs Radio Now


For those who make the argument that country radio is no better or worse now than it was in the past, that county radio has always had an overabundance of pop-country, and that anyone seeking real country has always had to find it somewhere besides the radio, I present this.

The following artists had number one hits for the majority of time and chart position held in their given year. 




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