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Travis releases covers disc; King goes country, sort of

Monday, September 30, 2013 – Randy Travis, who had a major health scare during the summer, returns with a covers disc of his influences on "Influence Vol. 1: The Man I Am." Merle Haggard, George Jones, Lefty Frizzell are among those whose songs he covers including Tonight I'm Playing Possum, featuring Joe Nichols. Travis also sings Thanks a Lot, Saginaw, Michigan and Why Baby Why.

Bluegrass singer James King veers towards country on "Three Chords and the Truth." King puts a bluegrass spin on traditional country songs, including He Stopped Loving Her Today, Old Five and Dimers and Chiseled in Stone.

Canadian folk rock/rootsy band The Deep Dark Woods are out with "Jubilee," featuring 13 songs.

Tyler Farr releases his debut disc, "Redneck Crazy," which happens to be the title of his hit single as well. The disc contains 11 songs.

More news for Randy Travis

CD reviews for Randy Travis

Influence Vol. 2: The Man I Am CD review - Influence Vol. 2: The Man I Am
Not having heard Randy Travis' new material, one could mistakenly think a guest vocalist was taking the first licks of "I'm Movin' On," his new album's opening cut. Is that Hank Snow? No, can't be. Refrain ... still the same voice. Second verse - oh man, that's Randy Travis! Wow, his voice sure has changed. Well, yeah, when you've been singing professionally since the mid-1980s, the ol' pipes can slip a bit. And Travis, 54, has battled serious »»»
Influence Vol. 1: The Man I Am CD review - Influence Vol. 1: The Man I Am
Randy Travis hasn't had it easy in recent years with abuse, arrests and this past summer, a major health issue of a stroke. But one thing that hasn't changed is the ease with which the North Carolina native, credited with spearheading the Neo Traditionalist movement 25 years ago, tackles traditional material. That's what this disc is about - Travis doing his take on songs that influenced him. From the sounds of it, Travis had a lot of good music kicking around the house, especially Merle Haggard. »»»
Anniversary Celebration CD review - Anniversary Celebration
When Randy Travis released "A Few Ole Country Boys" in 1990, it was plain to see the message of his duet with (and ode to) the legendary George Jones hit close to home. Just a few years removed from his stint as a cook at Music City bar The Nashville Palace, Travis' delivery of lyrics such as "Not too many years ago/When dreams weren't comin' true/I'd reach for inspiration/Sometimes it would be you" carried heavy-hitting meaning by the budding star. »»»
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: Rising Appalachia buck the mainsteam, and that's fine with them – Rising Appalachia would not be accused of being in the musical mainstream. Not too many bands who combine folk and Appalachian sounds with new world music could possibly be. And that suits the sister-led duo of Chloe Smith and Leah Song just fine. In fact, at one point, Chloe made it clear she did not embrace radio play as a sign of success... »»»
Concert Review: Bingham plays with something to prove – Ryan Bingham mainly focused on songs from his sixth album "American Love Song," for this lively show. Backed by a supportive band that also included two female backup singers and a fiddler, Bingham's eclectic setlist touched upon country, singer/songwriter folk, rock and blues. Bingham reached for lively country sounds early on, with... »»»
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