Americana Music News – As we count down to the Nov. 10 national broadcast of the Americana Music Festival Award show, you’ll want to check out a cool series of videos produced by Brite Revolution during the festival in Nashville.
Here’s the kick-off video featuring honeyhoney:
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By Ken Paulson
Americana Music Conference attendees had a rare treat when rockabilly legend Wanda Jackson popped up in the hotel bar to play a spirited set.
“What’s with the blue hair?,” the feisty Jackson shouted out to an audience member. “You must be a rebel.”
She surely was. She embraced rock ‘n’ roll when it was still the exclusive turf of young men.
In her performance on Friday, Jackson reached back to 1959 to do what she called her “first #1 record,” “Fujiyama Mama.” Unfortunately, it was number 1 in Japan and not here, she noted, smiling.
She drew two songs from her last album,The Party Ain’t Over, produced by Jack White, who she described as a “velvet-covered brick.”
She’s turned to Justin Townes Earle to produce her next album Unfinished Business, due this fall on Sugar Hill Records.
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One of the highlights of Americana Music Festival week in Nashville is Americanarama, sort of the ultimate in-store, but held outside in the parking lot of beloved record store Grimey’s.
We dropped by to watch impressive sets by the Howling Brothers, Amy Cook and Kim Richey, who recently moved back to Nashville and has been recording a new album.
We also dug through thousands of $1 albums, and ended up buying 25 relative obscurities, including a two-disc album capturing the highlights of the Nixon-Kenedy debates. We wonder if they released a single.
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A diverse and groundbreaking group of artists were honored at tonight’s Americana Honors and Awards event at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, with 2011 emerging artist nominees the Civil Wars being named duo/group of the year.
The album of the year was This One’s For Him: A Tribute to Guy Clark, a project produced by Tamara Saviano and Shawn Camp, which included an amazing cross-section of Americana artists.
The song of the year was “Alabama Pines,” as written and performed by Jason Isbell.
This year’s winners:
Lifetime Achievement for Performance: Bonnie Raitt
Lifetime Achievement Award for Instrumentalist: Booker T. Jones
Lifetime Achievement Award for Songwriting: Richard Thompson
Lifetime Achievement Award for Executive: Dennis Lord
Artist of the Year: Gillian Welch
Duo/group of the Year: The Civil Wars
Instrumentalist of the Year: Dave Rawlings
Album of the Year: This One’s For Him: A Tribute to Guy Clark; produced by Tamara Saviano and Shawn Camp
Song Of The Year Award : “Alabama Pines;” Written by Jason Isbell and performed by Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit
Emerging Artist of the Year: Alabama Shakes
Austin City Limits will broadcast highlights of the awards show on Nov. 10.
Americana Music News — Most of the Americana Music Festival’s showcase events take place in Nashville’s city’s top clubs, but Thursday night is an exception as the festival moves to the great wide open at the city’s “Live on the Green.” This downtown space boasts performances by many of the top names in music and tonight features the Wallflowers, Dunwells and Delta Spirit.Back indoors, the “Music of Memphis” evening at the Rutledge celebrates the music of Alex Chilton and Big Star, plus performances by Jim Lauderdale and the North Mississippi All-Stars, a solo turn by Luther Dickinson, the Bo-Keys and Star and Micey.
Americana Music News – It will be a terrific first night of showcases at the Americana Music Festival in Nashville. The Wednesday line-up ranges from a salute to Levon Helm (arguably the father of Americana music) to the up-and-coming Shovels and Rope.It’s really a matter of just picking a venue and hanging out for the evening. Every club is deep in talent. The Mercy Lounge, Cannery Ballroom and High Watt are all in the same building, which makes choosing between the Helm tribute, Brandi Carlile and Chris Stamey one of the toughest choices of the week.
Americana Music News – The Americana Music Association’s annual festival and conference kicks off Wednesday night with its Honors & Awards show. Tickets are in short supply, but this year fans can watch or listen to the show from the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville on AXS TV, NPR.org, Sirius/XM and WSM in Nashville.
Americana Music News — The Americana Music Festival returns to Nashville this week. It’s a world-class music festival at a very economical price. For $50, you have access to shows by an amazing array of artists over four nights. Details here.
By Paul T. Mueller
–Steve Forbert has been around for a long time – can it really have been more than 34 years since Alive on Arrival? – and there’s some weariness showing on his latest album, Over With You. Most of the 10 songs deal with the difficulties of relationships – maintaining one (“Baby I Know,” “All I Ask of You”), losing one (“Over With You”), looking for a new one (“All I Need”), even fantasizing about restarting an old one (“That’d Be Alright”).
Forbert brings to this subject a lot of experience and a plaintive, wistful tone that’s well suited to his material. “Forever’s such an easy word to say or write on paper/All things end in time,” he sings in the title track, a gentle goodbye that transcends the pain of a breakup to wish a former partner happiness and peace of mind.
Forbert takes on a bigger theme in “Pollyanna,” which deals with the struggle to make it in tough economic times. “Your west side home they foreclosed on/is someone else’s dream come true today,” he sings, before concluding, “The world and how to work it/is a book you should have read.”
Forbert gets instrumental help from Ben Sollee on cello and bass, Jason Yates on keyboards, Michael Jerome on drums and Sheldon Gomberg on bass. Ben Harper contributes guitar on several songs, including a nice part on the bouncy “That’d Be Alright.”
Those who remember Steve Forbert mostly from his biggest hit, the breezy “Romeo’s Tune” from 1979, might find this rather somber collection hard to like. But he’s still an intelligent and perceptive writer, and his distinctive voice, grittier with the years, delivers his words convincingly.
Americana Music News – One of the most anticipated acts at this year’s Americana Music Festival in Nashville is Corb Lund, whose new album Cabin Fever broke into the Americana Music airplay chart this week at # 24. Lund will play at the Mercy Lounge at 10 p.m. on Sept. 12, opening night of the festival.
If you can’t attend the festival , here’s a list of upcoming shows:
Aug. 10 – Dawson County Fair – Glendive, MT
Sept. 21 – Firehouse Saloon – Houston, TX
Sept. 26 – The Blue Light – Lubbock, TX
Sept. 27 – Mercury Lounge – Tulsa, OK
Sept. 28 – Love And War In Texas – Plano, TX
Sept. 29 – Cattlelacs Chainsaw Art Gallery – Manchaca, TX
Oct. 1 – Bar SS – Laporte, CO
Oct. 2 – Bar SS – Laporte, CO
Oct. 3 – The Soiled Dove Underground – Denver, CO
Oct. 4– Oskar Blues – Lyons, CO
Oct. 5 – Turn Of The Century Saloon – Montrose, CO
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By Ken Paulson
–(The World Famous Headliners will perform at the Americana Music Festival on Sept. 14 at 10 p.m. at the Rutledge in Nashville.) The World Famous Headliners’ name is tongue-in-cheek, but at the band’s core are some world-class songwriters.
Al Anderson (ex-NRBQ), Shawn Camp, Pat McLaughlin have teamed with the expert rhythm section of Michael Rhodes on bass and Greg Morrow on drums on a debut album that’s all over the map musically and fun throughout.
I suppose the closest parallel was the union of Ry Cooder, John Hiatt and Nick Lowe in Little Village, but these guys are enjoying themselves a lot more.
“Give Your Love to Me” sounds like a lost Dave Edmunds track, “Mamarita” smacks of Little Feat and Levon Helm would have nailed “Ball and Chain.” There’s also some era-hopping here, with the classic country sound of “Heart of Gold” and “Take Me Back” and “Can I,” a bit of garage rock that could have charted in 1967.
The debut album – derivative and original at the same time – will be released on Aug. 21.
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Americana Music News– The Americana Music Festival is heading outdoors Sept. 13 in partnership with Live on the Green, an annual series of free concerts at Public Square Park in front of the Metro Courthouse in Nashville.
Robert Plant and Patty Griffin at the 2011 Americana music awards show
The 2012 Americana Honors and Awards nominees were announced today in Los Angeles. They’ll be presented at the Ryman Auditorium on September 12 during the Americana Music Festival in Nashville.
SONG OF THE YEAR
“Alabama Pines” – Written by Jason Isbell and performed by Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit
“Come Around” – Written and performed by Sarah Jarosz
“I Love” – Written by Tom T. Hall and performed by Patty Griffin
“Waiting on the Sky to Fall” – Written and performed by Steve Earle
Jim Lauderdale joined Suzy Bogguss, Will Kimbrough and Eric Brace in an in-the-round show at the Bluebird Cafe in Nashville last night. It was as engaging and entertaining an evening as that line-up suggests.
Lauderdale has been Americana music’s best friend, hosting the annual awards show at the Ryman auditorium, while also releasing some of the genre’s best music. His new album Reason and Rhyme just received a Grammy nomination for best bluegrass album.
We spoke with him after the show last night, while the room was still buzzing and folks were still loud, as evidenced by the background noise on this interview. Here Lauderdale talks about working with Grateful Dead lyricist Robert Hunter and his great respect for Americana music.
Sun209 chronicles rock, roots and Americana music, drawing its name from the catalog number of Elvis Presley's first single, the Big Bang of contemporary music.
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