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John Paul White, to paraphrase a Steve Earle song, may just be one of the last of the hardcore troubadours. By ‘troubadour,' we mean one of those guys that lives to write great songs – more specifically, great country songs – and then get these songs into the ears of folks that will truly appreciate them. It's why he collaborated with a few of his country songwriting heroes to create the album "The Hurting Kind."

It's also why he's started a record label to assist fellow troubadours. Best of all though, "The Hurting Kind," which is filled with plenty of classic country musical elements, is a healing kind of album for anyone who have grown tired of all the annoying pop-country music clogging up the mainstream radio airwaves.

White's latest attracted a few A-list collaborators, which decidedly affected its sound. "Part of it was me being very selfish," White explains, "and me wanting to get in a room with people I've wanted to get in a room with for most of my... »»»

A lot of the early reviews for "American Love Song," Ryan Bingham's latest set of raucous and reflective Americana brilliance, have characterized it as the singer/songwriter's most personal album to date. That hardly seems possible for someone who has written about everything - from his mother's death from alcoholism to his father's suicide - through an intensely personal lens.

Every album has been his most personal, and "American Love Song" may stand as the best within the context of Bingham's stunningly consistent and satisfying catalog. The idea that Bingham's new album is the most representative of his inwardly directed songwriting style is baffling to him as well. `

"Yeah, it always has been personal, from the beginning," says Bingham with a laugh. "For the past couple of years, I've been doing a lot of acoustic shows where I sit down and play the songs solo, and I've started opening up and telling a lot of the stories about the songs and why I wrote them. Maybe... »»»

After having huge success at the get go with "Redneck Woman," Wilson eventually went her own way and took a break. During her "hiatus," Wilson started her own label and was a "120 percent mom" to her teenage daughter.

A lot of people have been wondering where you've been and what you've been up to. Can you tell them?

The last couple years, I've been back at it touring and making music. I signed a new artist, Jessie G, to my label. I've been working a lot with her on her EP and helping write songs. Before that I took a few years off. I had been touring nonstop all year every year for11-12 years, and I just felt like it was time to take a little break. I took three years to stay home and be a full-time 120 percent mom to my daughter. Those are critical years. 14,15, 16 years old. Mama needs to be there all the time. Then she hit 17 and basically said, where's that life you used to have? Do you want me to go get it back for you because you're driving me crazy. So, she put my ass in gear and got me back to work.

Do you think that time away was detrimental to your career given the momentum you had.... »»»

A visit with Hayes Carll finds him taking a rare day off at home, he and girlfriend, Allison Moorer split time between homes in New York City and Nashville, to discuss new album "What It Is."

"This album works around three themes; our relationship (he and Moorer), the world and myself. I try to make the best read I can and tell the story. I am fortunate to at a stage in life to have what I have and be with who I am with and I am doing my best to be present in the relationship. I want to pay attention and be in the moment."

Moorer co-produced the disc with Brad Jones. Asked if the final cut, "I Will Stay" alludes to this, Carll admits, "Yes it does. I wanted to show commitment."

The first single, "None'Ya", a beautiful tune of earnest commitment to a relationship, co-written with Moorer (providing harmony), and Adam Joseph Landry reached number one on Billboard Americana and the Texas Music singles charts. The opening lines, "I asked you where you been and you said... »»»

Dale (The Real Deal) Watson has been releasing hard country albums since 1995 and shows no signs of slowing down on his most recent release, "Call Me Lucky."

This record marks his third effort recorded in Memphis, at Sam Phillips Recording Studio, with Watson's regular touring band, The Lone Stars. Tastefully augmented by Mickey Raphael's unmistakable harmonica on several tunes, it even has a guest appearance by Johnny Cash's long-time drummer, W. C. (Fluke) Holland on the title cut.

As for the title, Watson says, "The same place where most of my songs come from, my fans. There are two girls who never miss a show when we travel through Wisconsin, and they get a picture made at every show, with one on each side of me kissing my cheek. One time they apologized for being such a hassle for me, and I said; "Hey, I'm just lucky," and a song came out of that."

Similar stories are attached to most of the self-penned songs on the album. For instance, Watson says "The Dumb... »»»

The Long Ryders have come a long way since they were initially associated with other Los Angeles relatively retro acts collected under the Paisley Underground umbrella. Even back during the mid to late ‘80s, though, this multifaceted group stood out from the pack.

Yes, there were psychedelic elements running through the group's first recordings, but there was also a whole lot of country mixed in, too. One also didn't pick up the same Velvet Underground vibe that ran through The Dream Syndicate's aura, nor the fem-Prince-isms inspiring some of The Bangles' bigger songs. Since those hazy – but wonderful - days band leader Sid Griffin has delved even deeper into his Kentucky country and bluegrass roots.

It's been a long 30 years since the last Long Ryders album proper. Friend of the band, Larry Chatman, has been pushing the act around that long to get back in the studio. Fortunately, Chatman is now Dr. Dre's personal assistant and arranged a week for the quartet to record in Dr. Dre's Los Angeles studio. The recording sounds terrific, and there's not even a hint of gangsta rap on it.... »»»

Suffice it to say that the past has always loomed large throughout Chip Taylor's career. That's all the more obvious if only for the fact that Taylor wrote some of the biggest pop hits of the ‘60s, "Wild Thing" (famously recorded by The Troggs, Jimi Hendrix and innumerable others), "Angel of the Morning"(the oft-covered seminal hit by Merilee Rush and later, Juice Newton), "Anyway You Want Me" (another smash success by The Troggs) "I Can't Let Go" (an early hit by the Hollies, later revived by Linda Ronstadt) and "Son of a Rotten Gambler" (another hit the Hollies could claim).

At the same time, Taylor's always been intent on moving forward, as evidenced by a stunning series of solo albums that date back to the early ‘70s, a testament to a prolific prowess that's been unwavering since the beginning.

Ironically, past and present frequently collide. Recently Taylor uncovered a cache of songs intended for release, but then somehow forgotten. Recorded nearly a dozen years... »»»

Dan Tyminski (known simply as "Tyminski" on his 2017 release "Southern Gothic") has traditional music roots and unassailable bluegrass street cred especially given his membership in Alison Krauss' Union Station. He is also a powerful songwriter and has been writing songs for himself and others for years now.

Not too long ago, Tyminski was in the process of putting some new songs in his portfolio to share with other artists, but a funny thing happened on the way: his package of songs was so distinct that UMG encouraged him to record and promote the songs under his own name. The result is "Southern Gothic," a dark, foreboding collection of songs, all co-written by Tyminski, that explore the not-quite-right ethos afoot in the culture these days.

"I never even looked at it as a project for myself until it went across the desk of Mike Dungan at UMG (Universal Music Group), and then a few people over there heard it and then reached out to Barry Coburn, my publisher, and... »»»

Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn have powerhouse individual talents; each has followed an estimable career path to where they find themselves today: making complex, but spare, records, writing music together and touring with their son Juno. Their new release, "Echo In The Valley" features mostly songs written by Fleck and Washburn, banjos, Washburn's strong vocals and very little else. "Echo" is a virtuoso turn by this duo.

The work is a product of its time. It was recorded, says Fleck, "at a really intense moment around the (2016 presidential) election, and we were absorbing and handling a lot of the things happening in the world that were so divisive and difficult, and we had different reactions about how to present that in our writing on the record. So, there was a lot going on other than just you know is disagreeing on the lyric or melody; there was ‘How do we present what we're thinking for now in the world and share it with people through our writing?' "... »»»

Legends don't come any more legendary than Chris Hillman. The roll call of bands that comprises Hillman's half century in music reads like a wing exhibit at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame; Byrds, Flying Burrito Brothers, Manassas, the Souther Hillman Furay Band, the Desert Rose Band, his potent solo career and an almost uncountable number of cameos on an equally impressive number of albums.

Even with this encyclopedia volume of musical accomplishment, Hillman still has the supernatural ability to surprise. Take his new album, "Bidin' My Time," for instance. It's his first new studio album in close to a decade, it may wind up standing among the best albums in his estimable catalog and yet, "Bidin' My Time" might never have happened.

"In all honesty, this time last year I was going, 'I don't think I'll be making any more records,'" says Hillman. "I just felt I've had a great career, 54-plus years. It wasn't out of any bitterness, it was just that I'd sort of reached that impasse."... »»»