Posts made in August, 2016

Music Festivals 2016: Deep Roots Mountain Festival.

Music Festivals 2016: Deep Roots Mountain Festival.

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Americana Fest
Muddy Roots
Crooked Smile Fall Fest

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This festival takes you out to a beautiful state I had the pleasure of visiting this spring, West Virginia. The Deep Roots Mountain Revival takes place in Masontown West Virginia on Marvin’s Mountaintop September 15-18th 2016. Wait until you see THIS lineup folks I’ll tell you what if I wasn’t busy with other ventures I would for sure take a ride out there.

So this festival is just a tad bit different HERE are the parking options and fees you CAN camp by your vehicle if you choose that payment option. THESE are the ticket options for you camping is included but you must purchase both options. I’ll post a link here with area hotels if I find any in the area, I’m always researching hotels for my own use in the future as I have these guys on my radar. It’s way up there in the corner near Pennsylvania which is an area my website presence is weak, but I have a huge reader base there.

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OK there ARE showers available and there IS a campground store here, plenty of water stations. HOWEVER outside food and drinks are NOT allowed near the stage area, but they ARE allowed in the camping area. Just a little different than what I’m doing this weekend but you know me I don’t drink while reporting on music. Common sense folks, leave your pets and firearms at home, and bring your chair.

So let’s take a good look at the lineup here of music we are dealing with 5 stages here
Main Stage A and B
Roots Stage
Revival Tent
Marvin’s VIP Stage

Megan Jean & The Klay Family Band

Matt Mullins & The Bringdowns

Rus Reppert

Jakobs Ferry Stragglers

Ginada Pinata

Fletcher’s Grove

Hillbilly Carnival

Rumpke Mountain Boys

I-Vibes

The Kind Thieves

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Ben And Noel Haggard Carry On The Strangers.

Ben And Noel Haggard Carry On The Strangers.

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On Friday October 7th two of Merle Haggard’s sons will be doing a special California show with their legendary father’s band The Strangers for an evening of celebration of Classic Country songs that Merle Haggard made famous. Now these two brother tour together ,Ben having already played lead guitar for the Strangers when Merle was alive. Now they are both playing the remaining shows Merle had booked with special care.

Ben began playing with his father at age 15 and has been a member of the band ever since, and has played on a handful of Merle albums. He also took the stage recently as one of the Highwaymen at the Grammys in 2014.

One of the greatest things about this whole show will be Norman Hamlet on that steel guitar, playing all those classic Merle songs with the band. I’m hoping they continue this show and tour with more shows nationwide. And if any more shows are announced I promise you I will include them on this article as well as this one.

You can purchase tickets for this event HERE.

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Album Reviews.

Album Reviews.

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Dale Watson Live Chicken Shit Bingo:

Dale Watson could more than likely be my FIRST ARTIST to be on my TOP 50 for two years in a row! If you’ll remember last year I announced Dale Watson was recording a LIVE album….well..it’s HERE! This album is one hell of a wild night with Dale and his Lone stars from Big T’s Roadhouse in Texas. Now one thing you will always remember about Dale Watson’s show are the Lone Star commercials and also on this album the BEST DOGS IN THE LAND and ALSO you can learn where “Out Yonder” is, right through the door that says “Out Yonder”.

You know Whitey Morgan covered ‘Where Do You Want It” really well, but nobody sings and plays it better than Dale himself and on this album his band is in top form for absolute sure, because “Everybody’s Somebody St. Hedwig Texas”.

One of my favorite songs he has ever played was the popular “Honky Tonkers Don’t Cry” in my opinion that is the best song he does ever. I’ll always love it and I don’t believe he will ever be able to beat it. There are a few Merle Haggard covers on this album including “The Bottle Let Me Down” and “The Fugitive” and many other Dale Watson classics like “I Don’t Rock No Cradle” and a fabulous steel guitar song called “Don Don Boogie”.

You know Dale Watson has Don Polluck one of the finest steel guitarists in the business today I’m getting to know tones and things like E9 and what they mean when added to the music through what he does for  Dale. In a nutshell this live album is truly an awesome piece and NEEDS to be added to YOUR collection NOW!

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Dolly Parton Pure And Simple:

2016 keeps throwing curve balls at me for absolute sure, this one will for sure be one of my top 5 picks on this website for DAMN SURE…It’s JUST that good, in fact it’s beyond good.  The songs on this album are basically Pure And Simple, well written and perhaps some of her finest work in the last ten years.

The opening self titled song is so positive and uplifting  and to be honest it made me choke up it moved me that much. The next two songs were just absolute pure Country Music masterpieces, and in her forty plus albums under her belt this one tore off the britches and socks. “Never Not Love You” was a more contemporary sound than what I like but it for sure complimented this album.

“Kiss It And Make It Better” was a story of her childhood and growing up much like “Coat Of Many Colors” was. This new album is also one of her finest albums vocally in MANY years and was produced VERY WELL. I don’t believe there was a bad song on the entire album.

“Head Over High Heels” was a very good song about falling in love and was pretty self evident of what it was about. “Can’t Be That Wrong” was almost all acoustic and honestly it was my favorite song on this album. Her voice has not faltered in all these years in ANY way. The only negative thing I had to say about this album was that there are only ten tracks and not fifteen or more! I am absolutely blown away this year by the COUNTRY albums being flung at us by the handfuls!

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Julian Davis: Make America Great Again.

Alright folks I am HIGHLY and eagerly awaiting this young man’s set at Muddy Roots next week and to see what he brings to the table, WOW! He absolutely astounded me at the Nashville Boogie this past spring and I missed his set during The Westport Roots Festival. He’s been burning up the independent Roots Music circuit and is pretty much the talk of the music world right now.

This young man made me ashamed of my own playing abilities being half my age and he displays the most amazing guitar playing you will ever see. He was one of my top acts at the Nashville Boogie and I’ll say that there are a few artists in the underground circuit like Rory Kelley and Dallas Moore that can pick like Julian Davis but not many can pick LIKE him…

This album is full of wonderful versions of songs like “Little Maggie” and “Call Me” I do not believe I ever heard anyone cover a Blondie song like this. Along with a good ol’ western swing song called “Kansas Plains” and you can see so many of his influences on his covers of Pokey LaFarge and the Allman Brothers..heck I remember him covering a Motorhead song!

The instrumentals on this album are almost as fantastic as his knowledge of classic songs and his appreciation of history for music.

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Let me begin by first saying I LOVED this album however this Country Rap stuff doesn’t exist to me so I didn’t pay much attention to the re-make of “Trashy Women”, in fact I only listened to a small portion of it before turning it off. Would I make fun of you for liking it…no…I would not. Yeah I know what you’re going to tell me people like Charlie Daniels country rapped in the past, and maybe so but I’m more backwoods country and old school than what they call country rap.

The album opens with two truly good down home honky tonk songs filled with good beats and steel guitar reminiscent of their first album way back when. In fact it’s almost better than any album they ever put out. “If I Ever Cross That Line” is possibly the best song on the album with it’s awesome slow dance tempo and well thought out words.

Twelve songs of Country Music greatness fill this album that you MUST HAVE in your collection at home, because this includes their LIVE cover of Roger Alan Wade’s “Psycho Bitch From Hell”. “Fast Cars Guitars And Fine Tuned Women” was a song with a more modern sound I thought was kind of out of place on this album but it was a good song nonetheless.

The album closed with another song called “I Ain’t Falling For That” which wasn’t bad but also fell short of really arousing my ears for what I was waiting for out of a Titan such as Confederate Railroad. Overall this album WAS indeed a home run for me in most ways indeed.

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Kelsey Waldon: I’ve Got A Way

This woman’s second album is another absolutely amazing venture and if you don’t have ALL of these albums you are crazy. It’s been a pleasure to writer this one, in fact “False King” has one of the best lines in the chorus I have heard all year. The mix job on it is fabulous and the music is equally good.

It opens with “Dirty Old Town” and the title track “All By Myself” both of which were fast paced toe tapping Country music goodness. That steel guitar pops and the beat has a 70’s Honky Tonk sound much like Margo Price’s masterpiece released this year in spring. This woman is one of the top acts I am waiting for at Amercianafest this year, and is one of my top female Country acts around today.

“Don’t Hurt The One” is a slower song and it has REALLY good vocals on it, she has such a gorgeous voice. I first heard about her on the Texas Music Scene with Ray Benson her 2014 album Goldmine was really good. This follow up album took some time to release but she is forming her own sound with songs like “I’d Rather Go On” and “Let’s Pretend” she is blazing a honky tonk trail across our speakers.

The album which once again only has twelve songs on it gets forgiven because songs like “Life Moves Slow” come right out of the good old days when songs made you want to drink….a LOT……

 

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2016 Deaths In Country Music Part 2.

2016 Deaths In Country Music Part 2.

The beginning portion of 2016 has been ravaged by MANY deaths of some iconic legends of Country Music and you can read about them HERE. Sadly I have to make these articles and they will not keep coming people, as death is a part of life. But you know as long as we continue to honor our Legends within Country Music and Bluegrass they will forever live within our hearts and minds.

I’m going to continue that article now with my part 2 of the now ongoing series of the middle summer and end of summer portions of the great losses to all genres of music that my website covers. This article will cover six very important people who contributed their talents to Country Music in many different ways. I was VERY sad to see them go and I’m writing this while researching bands for a outdoor festival I’m covering in September.

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Rich Fagan

I met Mr. Rich one afternoon at Mr. Kurt Fortmeyer’s house in White’s Creek Tennessee for a private party a few years back, VERY nice fellow and he contributed a LOT to Country Music. He died just recently August 5th in the evening at a hospice care facility in Nashville after a battle with cancer.

He has six top ten singles and eighteen charted singles in his fifty year career within Country Music. Since 1976 he had songs cut by George Strait, John Michael Montgomery,Clay Walker,Hank Williams Jr,George Jones,Patty Loveless,Shania Twain, and Jason And The Scorchers.

in the 1990’s he wrote “Be My Baby Tonight” and “Sold The Grundy County Auction Incident” were cut and charted for Rich Fagan as well as “Why Can’t We All Just Get A Long Neck” from Hank Williams Jr was charted on 2000. His Nashville tenure began in 1985 when Con Hunley recorded his song “Blue Suede Blues” and also Moe Bandy recorded one of George W Bush’s favorite songs “Americana” and it was embraced as his campaign song.

A few weeks ago his liver cancer became too much to bear and he was called home to Hillbilly Heaven to be rewarded and loved by his peers, we love you buddy.

 

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Bonnie Brown Ring

Miss Bonnie was one of the three members of the Browns which included her older sister Maxine and brother Jim Ed Brown. Jim Ed Brown has recently also passed away and was the sole person to ever join the Opry as a single artist AND with a group, he also maintains a Country Music Hall Of Fame membership upon those same terms.

In 1956 the Browns were signed by RCA Victor and were active until 1967. They were invited to join the Opry in 1965 and did so, and after disbanding she did not pursue a solo career however the Browns did reunite twice, once in 1980’s and once in 2006. The Browns were one of the ones I considered pop country for their time, albeit that pop country back then isn’t as hokey and fake as it currently is today. It’s STILL the same grounds but I enjoyed most of the pop country of that period.

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Pete Mitchell

Pete Mitchell was one of the ever popular rotating lineup of the Texas Troubadors which was the backup band for Country Legend Ernest Tubb. He played lead guitar for E.T. for many years as did many others, some were persuaded to leave by Ernest himself to further their solo careers.

Many times on many recordings at the beginning of their solos you would hear Ernest Tubb call out their names Aw….Pete Mitchell…..which also became a well known trademark call out for them.

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Melvin Goins

Melvin Goins was a hallowed Bluegrass Legend of over 60 years on the road playing for a record 5 million fans with many different bands in his time.He and his brother Ray Goins were most noted for being one of the first Bluegrass groups to come to New England, and were inducted into the West Virginia Music Hall Of Fame.

He joined the Clinch Mountain Boys around the time of Dr. Ralph Stanley’s famous fiddle guru, Curly Ray Cline and helped transition Old Time music to the then style of more modern Bluegrass. Later on he left Ralph Stanley’s band to form his own band with brother called The Windy Monutain Unit. He was one of the most active Bluegrass Legends almost months until his death.

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Don Parmley

Don Parmley is most noted for his twenty year tenure with the Bluegrass Cardinals however before his work with them he is credited with all of the banjo work on the television show The Beverley Hillbillies except for the opening theme song.

Before beginning the Bluegrass Cardinals he was in a band called the Hillmen which he and Country Legend Vern Gosdin were founding members of in the 1960’s. After the Bluegrass Cardinals disbanded he took a short absence and returned with a band called the Cardinal Tradition before he passed away in August of this year.

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Dale Sledd

Dale Sledd played rhythm guitar with the Osbourne Brothers in their peak from 1966-1977 during which time he did contribute to one of their greatest hits “Rocky Top” which they recorded in 1967. It was written by Felice Bryant and it was one of the first Bluegrass songs to be performed with amplified instruments.

They did this until 1974 when the Opry moved from the Ryman to the new Opry house and due to the lease agreement the Bluegrass music couldn’t be amplified so they began playing Rocky Top unplugged once again. And in 1967 he left the band to begin playing guitar for Grandpa and Ramona Jones until the middle 1980’s.

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The Annual Jerry Reed Tribute Show In Nashville.

The Annual Jerry Reed Tribute Show In Nashville.

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Well folks it’s time once again to help them promote the 5th Annual Jerry Reed Celebration right here in Nashville on September 7th at a truly great venue here in town 3rd And Lindsley. I mean honestly you HAVE to LOVE this bar for live music and beer even I whom usually doesn’t drink while working enjoy a beer at this place.

“If it has more than three chords it’s jazz”….yeah we all know where that quote came from…old Cledus “The Snowman” Snow himself and most notably the fastest guitar picker Nashville has EVER saw, Jerry Reed. In fact he was dubbed that by none other than one of the creators of the “Nashville Sound” era, Chet Atkins. He is rivaled only by the ever popular Lower Broadway figure Johnny Hilland who is a hell of a picker too and was rated as the top 2 fastest players. He also appeared another of the most iconic “Country Music Films” of the 1980’s Stroker Ace as he appeared as himself, hell he’s even been featured on Scooby Doo.

This tribute show contains an iconic entertainer that recorded one of his first hits in 1960 Miss Brenda Lee as she enjoyed success covering his song “That’s All You Gotta Do”. In the late 60’s and early 70’s Elvis Presley recorded many of Jerry Reed’s songs and he went on to star is many movies from what I call the “Country Music Films” back when movies were truly good. In my honest opinion Jerry Reed and Sammy Davis Jr. and Terry Bradshaw MADE movies like Smokey And The Bandit and Cannonball Run the hits they were, the cameos and sidekicks were the funniest and BEST.

This year some very wonderful entertainers will combine their talents to throw the 5th annual Jerry Reed celebration in true Country Music style. Here is a list of people included in this event as well as the Jerry Reed Tribute Band.

Thom Bresh
Seidina Reed
Evan Twitty
Parker Hastings
John Knowles
Buddy Greene
Darrell Toney
Brent Mason
Richard Smith
Steve Wariner
Brenda Lee

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