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Country Standard Time News Magazine – updated February 6, 2016
 

Country Music News


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CD Reviews and Upcoming Releases

CD review - The Ghosts of Highway 20 Lucinda Williams As impressive as her last album "Down Where The Spirit Meets The Bone" was, this much is true about Lucinda Williams: the next album will be as stellar or even more. That's not to say any of her releases are subpar, but the quality (and now consistency) of her output makes her a precious gem. »»»
CD review - The Driver Charles Kelley Many artists find inspiration from pain or life changing events. Lady Antebellum's Charles Kelley got his out of sheer boredom, and it resulted in a Grammy nomination. The title track off of his first solo album, The Driver, is up for Best Country Duo/Group Performance. With Lady A on hiatus, Kelley thought, "It's winter." "I'm bored and I want to make some music." He contacted producer Paul Worley to »»»
CD review - Scheherazade Freakwater The 10-year span since the last Freakwater album, 2005's "Thinking of You," combined with the busy schedules of Janet Bean and Catherine Irwin, the band's core duo, might have intimated to some that they were headed down permanently divergent paths. Between Bean's outside band activities (Eleventh Dream Day, Horse's Ha), Irwin's visual art career and both women's solo work, it seemed that Freakwater's well might have run tragically dry. »»»
CD review - Honeycomb The O's The O's are a fun roots band, comprised of ex-Polyphonic Spree members John Pedigo and Taylor Young, who showcase plenty of inspiration from traditional American music. There is a touch of bluegrass and string band element to their sound, but they are decisively contemporary. »»»
CD review - Weighted Mind Sierra Hull It has been nearly five years since Sierra Hull released a record. 2012's "Daybreak" (also on Rounder) featured startling mandolin playing by Hull and a strong, but still tentative, vocal style. Weighted Mind doesn't hold back on either score, and it's a beautiful work of contemporary bluegrass music. No one is the same person at 19 as at 24, and Hull is no different. »»»
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Hull lifts a weight off her mind – Country music feature - Hull lifts a weight off her mind Reaching her early twenties, Sierra Hull found herself beset by the same kinds of emotional angst and vulnerability that most of experience coming face-to-face with the challenges of life stretching out ahead. In her case, though, introduction to adulthood came at the age of 16 when she recorded her first »»»
The Grascals embrace the change – Country music feature - The Grascals embrace the change The Grascals are a well-established collection of players, featuring a six-piece mix of some of the most talented musicians in bluegrass. What happens when there's some turnover in the lineup of an established band? It either gets better or goes home. With »»»
Blitzen Trapper explores "Mystery and Wonder" – Country music feature - Blitzen Trapper explores "Mystery and Wonder" The song "Mystery and Wonder" is the centerpiece of Blitzen Trapper's latest album, "All Across This Land." It finds the band's vocalist and primary songwriter Eric Earley reflecting upon various songs and experiences over the years and vainly attempting to figure out what it all means. »»»
Whoops, Bottle Rockets create an album – Country music feature - Whoops, Bottle Rockets create an album Since the inception of the Bottle Rockets in the early '90s. the three basic constants have been the presence of guitarist/vocalist/primary songwriter Brian Henneman and drummer Mark Ortmann, a relatively consistent output schedule and a steady stream of great reviews for those releases. »»»
Cox Family gets back to business – Country music feature - Cox Family gets back to business On the eve of the first new release by the Cox Family in nearly two decades, "Gone Like The Cotton," Sidney Cox reflects on the national media frenzy over "Back To The Future" and the date Michael J. Fox would materialize from 1985, and the parallels to his own family's story haven't escaped his notice. »»»
Fortune has Statlers covered – Country music feature - Fortune has Statlers covered The Statler Brothers were an iconic vocal group in country music. They began by backing Johnny Cash (not a bad early gig, for sure), and went on to win the CMA award for Vocal Group of the Year an astounding 8 years in a row between 1972 and 1980. The group is in both the country music and gospel music halls of fame and has won three Grammy Awards. Tenor Jimmy Fortune replaced Lew Dewitt in 1983, and continued with the group for 21 year »»»
Concert Review: Not playing the hit proves no problem for Bingham – Ryan Bingham may always end up being best known for collaborating with T Bone Burnett on the soundtrack for the 2009 film starring Jeff Bridges, particularly "The Weary Kind." That would not be a surprise given that he won a Grammy and Oscar for the song. One would, therefore, think that "The Weary Kind" would be one of those... »»»