Today, Nashville indie-pop duo Airpark has premiered the striking video for "Le Tigre," the propulsive lead single from Early Works, Volume 2, which was released on the band's own label Eugenia Hall Records on September 15th. The video, filled with "sharp objects, churning electric guitars, creepy crawlies, a slithering snake and an abundance of mask appeal," was directed by Nashville filmmaker Ry Cox.
The new EP arrived six months after their debut, Early Works, Volume 1, which showcased the duo's ability to create evocative moments with the most minimal of instrumentation. That sense of minimalism gave way to something heartier as the band began touring the country in early 2017, playing more than 100 shows during the year. Along the way, Airpark bolstered its ranks to a four-piece band for live performances. As the musicians played together, their evolving atmospheric grooves made room for synthesizers, brotherly harmonies, syncopated guitars, melodic hooks and a globally-percussive punch. The foundation for Volume 2 was in place.
Back home in Nashville, Airpark recorded Early Works, Volume 2, with engineer and co-producer Ryan McFadden (Torres, Tony Joe White). The tracks were mixed by engineer Gavin Paddock (ZZ Ward, Valerie June) and mastered by Brian Lucey (Black Keys, Arctic Monkeys). A bold expansion of the band's original sound, these four songs show the brothers' ability to connect with the listener in both the loudest and most intimate of songs. For more information visit HERE
Austin-based country duo Waterloo Revival, Cody Cooper and George Birge, today released the video for their rendition of "All I Want for Christmas." Earlier this month, the track debuted on Amazon Music’s “Acoustic Christmas“ playlist, along with new songs from Josh Ritter, Noah Gunderson, Jim Lauderdale and many more. Get into the holiday spirit with the video below.
Dierks Bentley To Receive CRS Artist Humanitarian Award, Presented by Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals; Dan Halyburton To Receive Tom Rivers Humanitarian Award
(Nashville, Tenn. – December 7, 2017) – The Country Radio Broadcasters have announced multi-PLATINUM singer/songwriter Dierks Bentley as the recipient of the CRS 2018 Artist Humanitarian Award, presented by Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, and Dan Halyburton, Owner of Falls Media Group, as the recipient of the CRS 2018 Tom Rivers Humanitarian Award. Both individuals will be recognized at Country Radio Seminar 2018, following the Opening Ceremonies on Monday, Feb. 5, 2018.
The CRB Artist Humanitarian Award was created in 1990 by the organization’s board to honor Country music artists who have exhibited exceptional humanitarian efforts during their career. Past recipients of the annual award have included Zac Brown, Keith Urban, Lady Antebellum, Carrie Underwood, Rascal Flatts, Tim McGraw and Faith Hill, Toby Keith, Brad Paisley, Brooks & Dunn, Reba McEntire, Vince Gill, Garth Brooks, Charlie Daniels, among others.
First-Ever Holiday Features Collaborations with M. Ward, Ben Gibbard, Peter Buck, Mike Mills, Colin Meloy, Chuck Prophet, Tammy Ealom, The Posies, Kelly Hogan, and Norah O’Connor
The Minus 5’s Dear December is out now and receiving widespread praise. Offering 11 holiday-themed tracks, the album features a stocking full of guests who “bring the seasonal joy” (Yahoo! Music), including Ben Gibbard (Death Cab for Cutie), Peter Buck, Mike Mills, The Posies, Colin Meloy (The Decemberists), Chuck Prophet, M. Ward, Tammy Ealom (Dressy Bessy), Kurt Bloch, Kelly Hogan and Norah O’Connor
In early 2017, The Minus 5’s Scott McCaughey was asked to write some holiday songs for another artist’s holiday album. He became so inspired by the task that he wrote more than an album’s worth of material and decided to record that album with his group, The Minus 5, a rotating line-up of musician friends that McCaughey recruits to join him from time-to-time.
Friends Jack Ingram, Hayes Carll and Eric Church to help honor the Americana
grit-and-groover at awards show Feb. 24 at Austin’s Paramount Theatre
WIMBERLEY, Texas (Press Release) — In Ray Wylie Hubbard’s defense, maybe he had no idea that by sticking the fork in his 2015 autobiography A Life, Well … Lived, with that little joke about not wanting “to peak too soon,” he was all but guaranteeing that the book would already seem overdue for several new chapters not two years later. Not because he was in any way “done” living at the time — far from it; he’d just long since come to the enlightenment that it’s better to count one’s past and present blessings than to get too caught up in wondering if there are any more coming down the pike. As the road-wizened songwriter put it best in 2012’s “Mother Blues,” “The days I keep my gratitude higher than my expectations, well, I have really good days.”
Well, suffice it to say that Hubbard’s cup ‘o gratitude runneth over, because he had more than a few of those “really good days” all through 2016 and 2017. And though he’d be breaking his own rule to expect 2018 to follow suit, rest assured that he’s very much looking forward to at least one guaranteed great day already on his calendar: Saturday, Feb. 24. That’s the night when the famously self-effacing but duly acclaimed poet of Americana grit and groove — whose catalog of classics ranges from the irrepressible (no matter how hard he’s tried!) progressive country anthem “Up Against the Wall, Redneck Mother” to such later-day fan favorites as “The Messenger,” “Conversation with the Devil,” and “Snake Farm” — is scheduled for induction into the Texas Heritage Songwriters’ Association’s (TxHSA) Hall of Fame. This all-volunteer organization — dedicated to the cultural preservation of Texas songwriting and celebration of our exalted troubadours — offers exclusive sponsorship opportunities across a full weekend of events with details available here:
The upcoming full-length self-titled release from Dallas singer-songwriter John Pedigo's new outfit, Pedigo's Magic Pilsner, may feature characters whose situations seem bleak; yet it ultimately emanates hope, focusing on embracing the varied parts of life, both the unsavory and the sweet, with a welcome dose of realism and wit. From the story of the stand-up comic ("The Comedian") to the surprisingly sing-along-able tale of divorce ("Garage Sale"), Pedigo's tunes blend astutely crafted, detailed lyrics with accents of bright horns, banjo, and driving drums all of which are held anchored by the classic coupling of acoustic guitar and keys.
Today, TDC is incredibly excited to premiere the project's opening track, "Orion." Launching with the call of a siren, and slightly ominous banjo, the piano-led "Orion" is all at once complex, ethereal, elegant, and substantive; provoking thought about the choices and situations in daily life, and accepting the fact you have to accept difficulties and carry on, perhaps even with a newfound sense of optimism.
Pedigo had this to say about the track, "Orion is a thematic overture. It questions quandaries like the futility and repetition of daily life, fate vs. chance, loneliness, faith, faithlessness, and abandonment. There are a few pieces of ‘furniture’ throughout the song: The constellation Orion is a sad reminder of things that seemingly never change. You have a gypsy who relies on cards to determine her future, but isn’t that just chance? There’s a stranded man who is lost and calling out for help. In the end, you need to let go of the negative and move forward, but it’s not easy. Again, these themes are returned to throughout the album. This is, of course, what it means to me. I’m sure that everyone who listens to it will interpret it in their own way, and that is what’s really important. It’s a heavy song to me that’s obscured in a way."
Listen to, and share, the track above, then read on as John answers the rest of the Essential 8 and shares the inspiration behind the song, what he considers his biggest struggle thus far, and more!
Nashville, Tenn. (December 6, 2017 Press Release) – Country music’s top a cappella group HOME FREE is celebrating the most wonderful time of the year with their peaceful version of “Silent Night,” released today (12/6).
“Of course like most people, Christmas is our favorite time of year. The music, the food, spending time with friends and family, and getting to entertain so many fans on the A COUNTRY CHRISTMAS Tour are just a few reasons why,” says bassist Tim Foust. “Recording ‘Silent Night’ and shooting the video at such a beautiful location really got us all in the holiday spirit.”
Watch Home Free’s captivating take on “Silent Night” here.
The clip was filmed at the stunning, century-old Cathedral of Saint Paul in Saint Paul, MN on a chilly November evening. “Silent Night” is just one holiday classic the group is bringing to life for capacity crowds on their A COUNTRY CHRISTMAS Tour, along with festive favorites featured on their 2016 Christmas album FULL OF (EVEN MORE) CHEER. The yuletide spectacle continues tonight (12/6) in Kansas City, MO. They are also set to ring in the New Year with a special December 31 performance in Morton, MN. A limited number of tickets remain.
For more information on Home Free, visit www.homefreemusic.com.
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Listen: "Walk Between the Raindrops"
MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A sense of place has long permeated the music of J.D. Wilkes. He’s a native of Paducah, Kentucky, a city located at the confluence of various rivers and cultures — an area where musical variety is in the air and in the blood memory of its people.
“Of course, there’s bluegrass and hillbilly songs, but also blues, jazz, old time fiddle music, jug band music, even swamp rock,” says Wilkes. “It’s a great intersection there. I think I epitomize that in the way that I write and perform.”
Wilkes’ solo debut, Fire Dream, represents the apotheoses of that vision: a hillbilly-gypsy epic, it’s an album of art damaged cabaret music, leavened by Latin rhythms and high lonesome hollers. Call it boho bluegrass — maybe what Tom Waits would sound like if he were a Kentucky Colonel (a title that Wilkes happens to hold).
WILKESBORO, N.C. (December 5, 2017 Press Release) – MerleFest, presented by Window World, is proud to announce new artist additions to the lineup for MerleFest 2018, which will be held April 26 - 29, 2018: Elephant Revival, Rhiannon Giddens, Rodney Crowell, and Shinyribs. The annual homecoming of musicians and music fans returns to the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina. The newest additions to the lineup join over 75 artists that have already been announced, including Kris Kristofferson, Jamey Johnson, Robert Earl Keen, The Devil Makes Three, Balsam Range and the Atlanta Pops Orchestra Ensemble, Mission Temple Fireworks Revival featuring Paul Thorn & Band, The Blind Boys of Alabama, and the McCrary Sisters, a Midnight Jam hosted by Town Mountain and Jim Lauderdale, and many more.
Elephant Revival – Elephant Revival is a unique collection of multi-instrumentalists blending elements of gypsy, Celtic, Americana, and folk. Brought together by a unified sense of purpose, Elephant Revival communicates the importance of harmony among all living things and uses music to unite us in ways that no other medium can. Elephant Revival is scheduled to play the Hillside Stage on Friday.
Rhiannon Giddens – Singer-songwriter Rhiannon Giddens is the co-founder of the GRAMMY award-winning string band Carolina Chocolate Drops, playing banjo and fiddle. Giddens’ 2014 Grammy nominated solo debut, Tomorrow Is My Turn, blends gospel, jazz, blues, and country, and showcases her dazzling vocal prowess. Giddens follow-up album Freedom Highway, largely comprised of original songs, was released to widespread critical acclaim in February. She performed at the Obama White House and duets with country star Eric Church on his powerful anti-racism hit "Kill a Word." Last year she received the BBC Radio 2 Folk Award for Singer of the Year and the Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Bluegrass and Banjo and in 2017 won the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation “genius grant” award. In 2018, Giddens will be the guest curator for the Cambridge Folk Festival. Giddens also has a recurring role on the recently revived television drama Nashville. Rhiannon Giddens is scheduled to playSaturday on the Watson Stage.
PopMatters premiered the new video for "Let Me In Again": http://bit.ly/2jgKqQS
LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- “Let Me In Again,” which is coupled with “A Fine Surprise” on the latest offering inLouise Goffin’s ongoing digital singles project, might seem like a plea to an old lover, but it is really a plea to our tech-centric world. The song was inspired by Goffin noticing we spend so much of our time online that we “miss out at being present to what’s available around us.” She delivers this highly relevant message for our time in a beguiling ballad that deftly balances a raw simplicity with a subtly sweeping arrangement.
The song’s opening line “No one has time” is actually what Goffin first said when she met with Marvin Etzioni (Counting Crows/Peter Case producer) to try to write together. The phrase instantly sparked with them. Goffin recalls “knowing it was great” just listening to an early version and now feels the song reveals even more poignancy in its finished version, which she co-produced with Dave Way and, as Goffin describes them, a “to-die-for band.”