Nelson/Hag, Currington release new sounds
Tuesday, June 2, 2015
– Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard team up for their first album in decades, "Django & Jimmie." The first single from the veterans is "It's All Going to Pot." Buddy Cannon produced the 14-song set, which is their sixth collaboration. They recorded the album in three days.
Billy Currington is out with "Summer Forever," his sixth release. Dann Huff produced the dozen songs along with help from Jesse Frasure on the title track, penned by Cole Swindell, Jaren Johnston of The Cadillac Three, Brian Kelley and Tyler Hubbard of Florida Georgia Line and Frasure. Jessie James Decker helps out on "Good Night." The first single was "Don't It."
Bluegrass band The Hillbenders, who are based in Missouri, give an ode to one of the most important albums in rock history, "Tommy" with "Tommy A Bluegrass Opry."
Fellow bluegrassers, Sideline, are out with "Session II" (Mountain Fever). The band features Steve Dilling on banjo, Jason Moore on bass, Skip Cherryholmes on guitar, Brian Aldridge on mandolin and Daniel Aldridge on fiddle.
Roots rock vet Greg Trooper releases "Live at the Rock Room," recorded at an Austin club.
More news for Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard
CD reviews for Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard
Django and Jimmie
There's nothing quite so affecting as witnessing the reunion of two old friends. It's been over 20 years since road warriors Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard joined forces for their epic collaboration "Pancho & Lefty" and set the standard for several all-star pairings to come. This time around, the two pay homage to some of the musicians that preceded them - jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt and the whistling railway man, country musician Jimmie Rogers - as well as old pal, »»»
Pancho & Lefty
After "Always on My Mind," surprisingly, Chip Moman's production isn't nearly as trite on Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard's 1983 "Pancho & Lefty." The Townes Van Zandt title hit seems to have been purpose-built for Nelson and Haggard, and though Moman slips in strings, synths and stage cymbals, the earthiness of the vocals and Nelson's gut-string picking carry the day. The bulk of the album contrasts Nelson's unusual meters and Sinatra-like phrasings to Haggard's straight-ahead crooning with Moman »»»
Editorial: Walking the talk
When names like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Waylon and the Hag are invoked, you're talking hard core country. These are the touchstones of country , the guys who made country music what it was and still is (or maybe can be). When these folks would sing about being down-and-out and the rough-and-tumble, they knew of what they were singing about. Fast forward a few years to the country singers of today. »»»
Concert Review: Kristofferson gives insight, but no easy answers
When they say music gets better with age, they're not always just talking about songs alone; sometimes they're also referring to the listener. When Kris Kristofferson sings, "Well, I woke up Sunday morning/With no way to hold my head that didn't hurt," to smartly open "Sunday Mornin' Comin' Down," he... »»»
Concert Review: No sugarcoating, Welch dishes out an experience
Gillian Welch (accompanied, as always, by master guitarist David Rawlings), celebrated her "The Harrow & The Harvest" album with a powerful night of music. She apologized many times for the utter unhappiness expressed through this album's songs, admitting it's "not the most chipper album" at one point.... »»»
Country News Digest
Elsewhere in the news
Currently at the CST blogs
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The stunning vocal of Travis Meadows on the opening track, "Sideways," brims with honesty, pain and hard-earned wisdom as he offers a blend of confession and advice, stimulated by an experience at an adolescent addiction treatment center. Meadows, like many, is one of those Nashville songwriters ("Riser" for Dierks Bentley and "What We Ain't Got" for Jake Owen), but is finding his own voice relatively late in life. »»»
The Long Awaited Album
When last we visited a new album from Steve Martin & the Steep Canyon Rangers, 2011's "Rare Bird Alert," we found a cohesive, focused collection of bluegrass; it was an expansive, artistic creation that only benefited the bluegrass community. A subsequent live album (strikingly entitled "Live") presented a continued refinement of this pairing's chemistry. »»»