Monthly Archives: January 2018

Some Of My Ameripolitan Week Coverage To Come in February.

I JUST BOOKED my room for the Ameripolitan Awards in a few weeks in Memphis. Now sadly folks, I’ll NOT be able to see any of the showcase performances sadly. But I WILL be there for the awards show, and then I will return that Wednesday for the Dallas moore And Craig Gerdes Album Release Show at the Nashville Palace.

However there is also another AFTER PARTY happening here at the Nashville Palace that following Saturday February 17th, and it contains a VERY GOOD lineup here with some artists that I seldom get to feature on this website.

The #1 Ameripolitan Awards Productions Afterparty is happening in Music City, USA! Head east after the Awards show on February 13th for a few days of fun in Nashville before wrapping up the week long party with us on February 17th with a FREE one day festival at The Nashville Palace!

You know WHY It’s always FUN to go down to the palace for shows?  FREE PARKING AND TONS OF IT..the food is really good, and the back parlor room is VERY spacious. Booths and tables abound all over the room. The sound is always perfect and Miss Tara will set you up with any drinks you need. The staff is always beyond nice there, and I’ll always gladly support that venue.

Performers include:
Big Sandy
Chris Casello Trio
Cahrley Crockett
Zephaniah O’Hora & The 18 Wheelers
Jake Penrod
Teri Joyce And The Tagalongs
Wendy Newcomer & The Good Ol’ Timers
Nathan Belt And The Buckles
John England
The Nashville Palace House Band

Dallas Moore And Craig Gerdes Album Release Party At The Nashville Palace.

SOL Records Double Album Release Party
featuring Dallas Moore and his new album “Mr. Honky Tonk” and Craig Gerdes with his new album “Smokin, Drinking, & Gamblin” as well as celebrating Nashville Pedal Steel Legend Jim Vest’s 77th Birthday Bash!

Doors 7pm

Craig Gerdes Band with special guests 8pm

Dallas Moore Band 9:15pm

Folks directly after the Ameripolitan Awards in Memphis Tennessee the second week of February SOL Records has teamed up with The Nashville Palace to bring you some great Country Music after the winners are announced in Memphis! I am ALSO going to be covering an AFTER PARTY that the Palace is having the Saturday AFTER the awards.

I personally will be present in Memphis to cover the event in all it’s glory next month, and afterwards I’ll be going down to the Palace to welcome the newest album from Dallas Moore. I recently wrote about his performance last year at the The Muddy Roots Music Festival where he played some of the NEW songs for the first time ever.

I KNOW BOTH OF THESE ALBUMS WILL HIT MANY TOP LISTS OF 2018. And I’ll tell you Mr. Dallas and his band are personal friends of mine, I HAVE heard BOTH albums and Mr. Joshua Wallace WILL HAVE reviews up THIS WEEK for both of them.

I realize that there will be showcases around Memphis during the Ameripolitan weekend, however due to my further 2018 booking for other events I don’t have enough vacation time to cover that many days in Memphis. TRUST ME if you are avid reader here you’ll thank me when it’s time for other festivals.

I’m also going to be tying in many other articles here on this string of events in THREE STATES so y’all keep your eyes peeled for further updates and many other people involved into this mix…it’s ALL ABOUT THE MUSIC here on this blog people.

Album Feature: Steep Canyon Rangers : Out In The Open.

Album Feature : Steep Canyon Rangers – Out In The Open

By Joshua Wallace

The Steep Canyon Rangers are one of my favorite bluegrass bands and they have returned with their 10th studio album Out In The Open.  This album finds the band continuing to sharpen their skills and do what they do best.  There is a great blend of traditional Bluegrass and Americana here.  This is the second Steep Canyon Ranger only album to feature Mike Ashworth on percussion and the last album with Charles Humphrey III on bass as he left the band in December 2017.  Out In The Open finds the band in top form and delivering some memorable songs.

The album was recorded live in studio with many one takes on the record.  This includes the album’s title track “Out In The Open”.  This production technique creates a live feel to the record and the band does sound like they’re all in one room rather than in recording booths or recording different parts at different times.  I feel like it is important to capture bluegrass bands in an environment that is as close to live as possible as there is nothing like good live bluegrass.

This album does have a bit of a road trip feel to it.  One of my favorites is a track called “Let Me Out Of This Town” which heavily features fiddle player Nicky Sanders.  Another track that puts Nicky Sanders forward in the mix is “Can’t Get Home”.  This tune is a bit more country than bluegrass and showcases the blend of styles they are able to create.

The Steep Canyon Rangers switch things up a bit again with “Let Me Die In My Footsteps”.  This acoustic folksy and almost gospel tune is one of the quieter moments on the album but still hits hard like a good song should.  This song is very reminiscent of Marty Stuart’s recent hit “Wait For The Morning” in a good way.  I’m also a big fan of the track “Roadside Anthem” which starts out slowly, but swells and finishes with a beautiful and fast fiddle solo at the end.

This is the Steep Canyon Ranger’s 10th album that does not feature Steve Martin or Edie Brickell.  If you are only familiar with this band as Steve Martin’s backing band, now is a good time to jump in.  This band continues to get better with each record and this is one of their best releases.  I recommend giving this album a shot even if you’re not a fan of traditional bluegrass.  While Steep Canyon Rangers are at their core a bluegrass band, they always bring something more to the table with country and folk influences in their sound.  Out In the Open is available everywhere on January 26th.

Favorite Tracks : “Out In The Open”, “Let Me Out Of This Town”, “Let Me Die In My Footsteps”, “Farmers and Pharaohs”

Steep Canyon Rangers – Out In The Open (2018)

  1. Farmers and Pharaohs

  2. Let Me Out of This Town

  3. Out in the Open

  4. Can’t Get Home

  5. Going Midwest

  6. When She Was Mine

  7. Love Harder

  8. Shenandoah Valley

  9. Best of Me

  10. Roadside Anthems

  11. Let Me Die in My Footsteps

  12. The Speed We’re Traveling

Joshua Wallace
Chief Staff Writer

Gary Hayes County

Music Festivals 2018: Old Settler’s Music Festival.

Make sure to get your ticket for FestDrive’s Shuttle to & from Old Settler’s!

In an effort to reduce traffic and our carbon footprint, we are partnering with FestDrive to bring you bus service to and from the festival from Austin, San Antonio, and Houston. We know that driving can be stressful and troublesome so leave that up to us. Buses will run all four days.

Buy Your Shuttle Tickets

I have been covering this festival as a part of the other 174 yearly festival events that I cover. Festivals are a huge part of my music itinerary every year and my crew and I physically cover as many festivals we can with articles describing our experience there.

So this event transpires on April 19-22nd 2018, has a brand new location in Texas and is in it’s 30th year having began in 1988. This event is truly one of Central Texas’ most prestigious festivals, and is mentioned at many other festivals I equally cover.  And you can purchase your tickets for this event HERE.

Here is the lineup for this year’s event, now as usual I AM in constant contact with Miss Jean’s crew and will OFTEN ADD all the updates they send me. They have reached an agreement with another festival called Driftwood Music Festival (Whom we also cover) and their brand will be launching their event at a different month, because patrons of both events are involved in that scene.

There is a late night stage for campers that will contain people like my friend Mr. Konrad Wert AKA Possessed By Paul James and others. Like all my other festival articles, I have included all the nearby hotels and this festival like others has a shuttle service that will take you to many of them. The late night stage will be for unplugged performers and let me tell you Possessed By Paul James will BLOW YOU AWAY, and the audience will maintain complete silence during the late night events. MORE festivals should follow that special offering.

Greensky Bluegrass

Railroad Earth

I’m With Her – Sara Watkins, Sarah Jarosz, Aoife O’Donovan

Bob Schneider

JD McPherson


Jamestown Revival

The Grateful Ball featuring The Travelin’ McCourys & Jeff Austin Band

Ray Wylie Hubbard

Balsam RangeThe War & Treaty

Will Hoge

Donna the Buffalo


The Travelin’ McCourys

Steve Poltz

Jeff Austin Band

The War & Treaty

Front Country

Billy Strings

Colter Wall

The Deer

Possessed by Paul James

3% Milk (Members of MilkDrive, The Deer & the Greencards)*

We Banjo 3

The Peterson Brothers


The Cleverlys

Tomar & the FCs

Ley Line*

The Stacks

Jon Stickley Trio

Sophie Scott (2017 Youth Competition Winner)


Spring has sprung and we’re just weeks away from our 31st Old Settler’s. The following are some important announcements and information.

This Sunday is our final volunteer meeting. We will meet from 2 – 5 pm at our new home in Tilmon. Come on out if you wish to volunteer. Thanks in advance for your support.

If you haven’t picked up your tickets yet, what’s stopping you? Advance ticket prices remain until April 4thYou can learn more and grab yours here.

If our new home is a bit of a longer commute for you, fear not! FestDrive is offering a shuttle service to help get you here and back home.

We also wanted to let you know that the Caldwell County Commissioners unanimously approved our festival permit application, which was a historic vote. Martin Ritchey, the chief of the county’s office of emergency management said, “They’ve made a substantial investment in property in Caldwell County.”

Judge Pro Tem Joe Roland said he was glad to have us in the county. He credited us with planning and doing things the right way, “They are truly a stand-up group, we welcome them to Caldwell County.” Feels good to get some more local love! Thanks to everyone in the county for their support. Thanks also to the Lockhart Post-Register who published this article.

And THANK YOU for your support. Come join us for our best year yet on April 19 – 22. You can see the full lineup schedule here.






Best Western Lockhart Hotel & Suites

3-star hotel
Casual hotel with free breakfast & pool
Free breakfast
Lockhart Inn

2-star hotel
Simple rooms with cable TV & Wi-Fi
Free Wi-Fi
Plum Creek Inn

2-star hotel
Best Western Bastrop Pines Inn

3-star hotel
Simple hotel with free WiFi & a pool
Free Wi-Fi
Free breakfast
La Quinta Inn & Suites Kyle – Austin South

3-star hotel
Lodging with an outdoor pool & a hot tub
DEAL 23% less than usual
La Quinta Inn & Suites Luling

La Quinta Inn & Suites Austin Airport

3-star hotel
Modern hotel with dining & free WiFi
W Austin

4-star hotel
Trendy hotel with spa & outdoor pool
Free breakfast
DEAL 48% less than usual
Hotel Saint Cecilia

4-star hotel
Artsy boutique property with a pool
Best Western Plus Longhorn Inn & Suites

3-star hotel
Modern lodging with Wi-Fi & breakfast
Ellison House

Boutique Hotel
Hotel · 16228 Remuda Trail
The Driskill Bar

Hotel · 604 Brazos St
Polished cocktail bar with live music
Kimpton Hotel Van Zandt

4-star hotel
Sleek lodging with a rooftop pool & bar
Driskill Hotel

Hotel · 150-172 Old Pecan St
La Quinta Inn San Marcos

3-star hotel
2-story hotel with free WiFi & breakfast
Free Wi-Fi
DEAL 25% less than usual
Best Western San Marcos

3-star hotel
Unfussy hotel with free WiFi & a pool
Free breakfast
Four Seasons Hotel Austin

4-star hotel
Elegant rooms, plus a saltwater pool
Lake Falling Star RV Resort

Resort · 7355 FM713
Best Western Regency Inn & Suites

2-star hotel
Budget hotel with free WiFi & breakfast
Free Wi-Fi
Free breakfast

Our new home features rolling hills and wooded areas with space available for both Tents and RVs or Trailers. Catch up with friends, make new ones — and definitely bring your instruments for some late night jams around the campfires.

Bringing the whole family? No worries — we have a dedicated family camping area, too!


Tent Camping

One of the beautiful things about our new space is just that – space! You spoke, and we listened. We have room to spread out some, and offer more camping options than ever before.

Want to camp in the trees? No problem, we have wooded camping with a nearby lot for your car.

Prefer to camp next to your car? We’ve got that option, too, in our meadow car camping area.

Need family camping so your little ones can get some rest? We now have a designated area just for you.

Old Settlers believes that music lovers of all abilities should have the opportunity to enjoy the festival together. Our new space allows us to offer designated ADA camping, and we are happy to help you get the most out of your festival experience.

Do you have a large group of pickers and fans needing to camp together with space for RVs, tents, and room to jam? We can accommodate you too with a custom package to fit your needs. Let us know what you need and we will do our best to make it happen.  Contact:

RV/Trailer Pass

RVs and trailers will be charged an additional $100 over the cost of camping. This applies to RVs over 18 feet and trailers with more than one axle. The charge covers an electrical permit and a campground parking permit. Electrical will be primarily 30 amp services. There will be a few 50 amp services. Sorry, we do not anticipate having water hookups this year.

Everyone will be charged a $30 campground parking fee.  Parking is available in the meadow.  If possible, we ask that you park your cars in the meadow as well.  Please keep the woods clear for tents and trailers.

5 Shots With Fairbanks: Tommy Ash.


I got the chance to interview the beautifully talented Tommy Ash last week and I am happy to now bring you all that interview. Please remember to like this page in orders to ensure you don’t miss any of the musician interviews coming up in 2018 and also please share this post cause the simple act of clicking share helps spread and strengthen the music that we all love.

Round 1 – How long have you been a touring musician and on average about how many shows do you play each year?

Tommy – “Well I have been singing all my life, but I’ve been playing music live since I was 13, playing with a band every Friday and Saturday night at local bars. I took a break in high school, got a little buck wild for a bit and then 2010 put a band together again. When I lived in AZ we played about 100-200+ shows a year. I moved to Nashville in April 2016 and have been playing mostly around Tennessee and a few shows in Texas, but I am planning some tour dates for 2018.”

Round 2 – Do you have plans to release a new album anytime soon and if so is there any details you can tell us about it?

Tommy – “By golly YES I am way overdue! I actually started recording an album two years ago in Arizona and then I moved to Nashville. The songs have changed so much just from playing them out live that I decided to scratch the album that I started. Getting comfortable with the songs before hitting the studio and having a better idea on what I want as far as sound, tones and instruments. I am finishing writing for the next album and trying to get a feel for who I want to work with. I don’t want to jump into anything without knowing I can be proud of the finished product. I want to work with good people and people that get what I do. I don’t have time to waist, this is true but shit I also don’t have the money to blow.”

Round 3 – I know it’s hard, but if you could pick one song to listen to before you die, what song would you choose?

Tommy – “Well this all depends on how I am dying. If I am just old or sick and I know my time on earth is coming to an end, I think I would say Otis Redding “Sitting on the dock of the bay” This song is so well written and so beautiful it just feels like the biggest breath of fresh air and sunshine. Seems like a good peaceful way to kick the bucket.
But If I am dying from like an overdose, driving my car off a cliff or someone has a gun to my head, or aliens are taking over the world etc., etc. Well I would say I would crank up some Jerry Reed, Waylon Jennings, John Anderson, Sturgill Simpson, something with some balls so I can go out with a bang and get a good rush.”

Still Round 3 – Why does that song and those lyrics mean so much to you?

Tommy – “Well If we are talking about if I die sick or old.. “Sitting at the dock of the bay” … I lost my dog a few months back. He had liver failure and we used to lay outside on a blanket and soak in the sun because it would make him feel better. That song would play a lot on my ipod shuffle and it was some of the last good moments I had with him. It is a beautiful song and some of my most cherished memories. ”

Round 4 – I love animals so I ask everyone this question but do you have any pets, if so can you tell us about them?

Tommy – “I love animals WAY too much it is a fucking problem…well not for me but maybe my marriage.

I lost my best friend Billy in August. He meant the world to me. I rescued him from the shelter in 2010. A few days after adopting him I noticed he seemed sick and took him to the vet and found out he had liver failure. He fought hard for 7 years. August of 2017 we lost him, his little body finally had enough and gave up. He was a 70’s brown miniature pinscher/ wiener dog mix. “Wiener pincher” haha! But I have 3 other dogs.

Patsy a little chi mix that I rescued from the kill list at a shelter in Arizona. She was labeled as “aggressive” and they couldn’t get near her, so we scooped her into a laundry basket and took her home.

Then there is Shooter, a brindle colored min pinscher/ Papillon mix. His nick name is “Beef”.

Next is “Roadie” The cutest little black dog with tiny little short legs. The most annoying little fucker on the planet! We can’t put him up for adoption. The next owners would kill him! And if anyone is going to get the pleasure of killing him it is going to be me or my husband for putting up with his crazy ass for this long. Hahaha! (Joke)

Then there is “Girlfriend” a cat we found in my neighbor’s boat when she was only a few weeks old.

Next is “Roberto” an Amazon Parrot. I started a band in 2010 and one of our first shows was at a Mexican club in Arizona called “La Casa del Mariachi” They had two birds at the entrance of the club. They were not very well cared for and one of the birds died. So we took the other one, “Roberto”, home. I am actually driving to Arizona to pick him up from my mom and bring him back to Tennessee. Wait until you hear him sing! Maybe he will make it on the next album.”

Round 5 – What is your favorite thing to do outside of the music World?

Tommy – “Ahh man… Well a good looking man by my side, my fur babies and some good snacks! My husband (Ben lead guitar player) We like to get on the couch with all of our fur creatures, throw on our comfy clothes, turn the lights down low and get every kind of snack you can image, candy, chips, cookies, spicy pickles, and a giant coke from the gas station and watch movies all night long.

Or I like to hang out on my dads boat in Florida and do a little fishing as well. I need my own boat.. I will call it “Tommy’s Ark” and take all of my animals on it with me.”

Final Call – This is an open question so tell your fans and the people reading this whatever you would like them to know.

Tommy – “Man my fans are the BEST! They have supported me for so many years and have been so kind and have become like family to me. Anyone that supports you in your career and shares that joy with you I call a dang good friend. I try my best to always write back to Instagram messages and facebook messages because they truly mean the world to me.

Gotta throw a big ol shout out to my buddy Channing Wilson for being such a badass and making badass music. Also my girl Brea Burns in Arizona for keeping the good country alive out there. Check out her music and if you are reading this and you are a fan of country music check out all the badass Nashville cats like Alex Williams, Sarah Gayle Meech, Brent Cobb, Emily Nenni, Kristina Murray, Laura Mae Socks, The Cowpokes, Joshua Hedley, Tony Martinez, Chance McCoy, Wade Sapp, Flying Buffaloes. So much great music cooking up in Nashville right now, make sure to check them all out.

Country Music Hall Of Fame To Launch Outlaw Era Exhibit..MY Interpretations And Opinions.

So first before I elaborate my opinions and prognostications on this exhibit this is from the CMHOF page:

Willie Nelson. Waylon Jennings. Kris Kristofferson. Jessi Colter. Bobby Bare. Jerry Jeff Walker. David Allan Coe. Cowboy Jack Clement. Tom T. Hall. Billy Joe Shaver. Guy Clark. Townes Van Zandt. Tompall Glaser. Today, all names synonymous with the word “outlaw,” but 40 years ago they started a musical revolution by creating music and a culture that shook the status quo on Music Row and cemented their place in country music history and beyond.

Nashville’s Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum’s upcoming major exhibition, Outlaws & Armadillos: Country’s Roaring ’70s, will explore this era of cultural and artistic exchange between Nashville, Tenn., and Austin, Texas, revealing untold stories and never-seen artifacts. The exhibition, which opens May 25 for a nearly three-year run, will explore the complicated, surprising relationship between the two cities.

“Outlaws & Armadillos: Country’s Roaring ’70s offers an unprecedented look at some of the most compelling music and artists in music history,” said museum CEO Kyle Young. “This was an era in which renegades Bobby Bare, Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson fought for and won creative control of their own songs and sounds. It was a time when melodic poets Guy Clark, Townes Van Zandt and Billy Joe Shaver elevated public perception of what a country song could be. It was a time when the Austin, Texas, music and arts scenes blossomed, and when characters like singer-songwriter Jerry Jeff Walker, Hondo Crouch (who bought his own town, Luckenbach, Texas), armadillo art specialist Jim Franklin and University of Texas football coach Darrell Royal changed Lone Star culture. At the time, some of these things seemed unusual, even insane. Now, they all seem essential to any understanding of this great American art form, country music.”

 Outlaws & Armadillos runs through Feb. 14, 2021. and will be accompanied by educational programs, including live performances, panel discussions and films. The museum will produce a companion book that will be available May 25. In addition, the museum in partnership with Legacy Recordings, a division of Sony Music, will release CD and LP sets featuring music by artists included in the exhibition.  From the CMHOF page.
Well it does mine, but probably not for the same reasons it does yours. After you completely retain this article from start to finish, you may or may not agree with me..and not to be rude but I don’t care. These are JUST MY understandings and definitions of what transpired within Country Music in the 1970’s.
First off let me illustrate this point, OUTLAW IS NOT A GENRE, it was an era of creative control of their own music. And I firmly believe it was the answer to an establishment that was manufacturing pop country for that era (also coined as the era of the Nashville Sound). It’s followed by one of it’s predecessors the Bakersfield Sound Era which also emancipated it’s artists form Nashville. I really do believe that Outlaw Country SORT OF evolved from the Bakersfield Era, and a prime example of that is if you really look at it…Mr. Merle Haggard was prominently featured in BOTH eras having been paroled from San Quentin in 1960 right in the middle of the Bakersfield Era.
One of the major reasons for the abrupt end of the Bakersfield Era I believe was the 1972 death of Iconic sideman Mr. Don Rich.  I mean let’s be honest even Mr. Buck himself admitted his career was done upon his untimely death, I mean I LOVED Mr. Bucks entire career but Monster’s Holiday was a horrible album! Even though Mr. Jerry Brightman on steel was indeed wonderful.
On the other side of the coin we had (what I call) Pianotonk Era Country music of the 60’s and 70’s which preceded the Nashville Sound, which was the pop country of it’s time, the likes of Ray Price (NOT the Cherokee Cowboys period) but the period with all the subtle strings and less twangy sound. Pianotonk was what?  I’m so glad you asked my friends..
Man it was that wonderful period of Country Music that people like Jerry Lee Lewis and Mcikey Gilley played in (who in reality were cousins) but also people like Ray Price was once prominent in. See the pattern here? Once again I have NO IDEA if I’m correct or not but this is how I see things. Listen to albums like Flying High by Mickey Gilley and you’ll get a good taste of that, or 20/20 Vision by Ronnie Milsap was another good example of my theory.
Now then I’ll admit that Bakerfield came from the West Coast and Outlaw Era came from the great state of Texas, and it heralded it heroes like Ernest Tubb. If you don’t think Ernest Tubb got wild…delve into the story of how he shot at a man (he thought was previous Opry employee Jim Denny) in the hallway. You know many of the more popular Outlaw Era artists began in Nashville trying it their way, if you remember the first Waylon Jennings albums he was clean cut and conformed to what THEY wanted.
However this exhibit itself states that it will touch on a very important aspect of the outlaw movement (aside from history) and that is the PRODUCERS. I think 90 percent of the credit for Mr. Johnny Paycheck’s persona should go to Mr. Billy Sherrill. Mr. Billy created the whole sound for Tammy Wynette, and not only produced MANY iconic albums but WROTE those classic songs WE KNOW as Outlaw classics.
Once again flipping back to Mr. Buck Owens and the Bakersfield Sound the whole mastermind behind Buck Owens was Capitol producer Ken Nelson. EVERY ERA had it’s creative geniuses who knew WHAT to ,arket WHEN and to WHOM.  Whether you like Mr. Don Williams you had Mr. Garth Fundis or if you liked Hank Williams Jr. you had Mr. Jimmy Bowen..and who created the Bocephus we all know in the early 70’s after he fell of the mountain….Jimmy Bowen.
This exhibit will include so many side concerts and instructional shows and workshops I will be visiting this exhibit MANY times in my time off I can!

Hillbilly Casino At O Connors Irish Pub.


I am here at O Connors Irish Pub in Clarksville Tn where one of my Top 50 Of 2017 bands is tearing up the city. The first two songs I believe were “Living In The U.S.A.”, and “Get Along Big Daddy”. They played a nice cover of Johnny Cash’s “Big River” before going into an original song Mr. Ronnie wrote called “Heartburn And Heartache”…WHO IS IT..why Hillbilly Casino of course!

Some news about the band here upon talking to the Vanilla Gorilla himself Mr. Geoff Firebaugh, was that after tommorrow’s performance in Louisville Ky, they are heading out to California to play during the NAMM Convention. Also, they will be playing a showcase the weekend before the Ameripolitan Awards at the Blues City Cafe.

As I always do, I would like to take a few moments to talk abut the venue, which was very spacious and arranged nicely. I spend a LOT of time in bars for this job, and I am WELL trained to see things most people do not. This place parties hard, and I will warn those that don’t like smoking this place is HEAVY filled with smoke. For me it is a normal thing to encounter, but in the PC world of today’s day and age its apparently not the norm. I’ll be honest I don’t mind it one bit and I think smokers have rights too, but this is just a fair warning for those that disagree.

I’m using a BRAND NEW tablet today as I write this so I will not be including videos because the audio turned out terribly choppy. SEE THIS is how you buy new toys and tinker with them, and find mistakes and settings. I’ll have it up and blazing trails with me SOON. I have MANY videos of Hillbilly Casino on my Youtube page now from previous events.

I liked the size of the tables up front by the stage, as well as the stage itself. The lighting was really good and provided me with enough prime photo opportunities of them all. This venue gets packed up hard core and crowded all night while the DJ played 80s songs for people.  The food was REALLY GOOD, the menu did not contain many options, but that’s o.k. because the appetizers were GREAT and the burgers are really good. Speed of service was above satisfactory, and the staff was very nice. The security did a BANG UP job last night at maintaining order on the bathroom situation and he was VERY cordial in explaining rules to people, telling people NO all night is often a thankless job and he did it in a VERY professional manner in my opinion.  All in All I would gladly return to O C’onnors for another job in the near future.

After Hillbilly Casino played some Chuck Berry, they went into two original songs called “80085” and another called “Dog On A Chain”, the latter of which is on their new album called Red White And Bruised. The song “Cocaine Blues” was next, followed by the ever popular song in their set called “PBR” Their new album continued to adorn their set tonight as the played “Give It All Up To You”….by the wa,y that album is now available on vinyl, so go buy it. Right now they are playing “Low Down” and went into a cover of  “Only Daddy that’ll walk the line”.

The second set began with “No Toll Taken” and went into a high energy song called “Jibber Jabber” from the new album, now Jibber Jabber originally showed up on the Live Album From The Exit Inn.
As the night progressed they pretty much played the entire new album for us. More of the set contained “Shes Got Tricks”, “Toss Turn And Roll, and Trouble”.

“Knockin At your Door” was included in the set as well as “How Do You Think” and as always a very wild version of “the Hole”. Perhaps one of their more energetic song sis the Hole followed by the awesome murder ballad “Violets In May”. They then played my all time favorite song “Big Dan” and “Hot Rod Lincoln”. Folks I look forward to covering Hillbilly Casino many ore times in 2018 at many festivals and more house shows as well. The show closed with a KISS cover and their anthem the “Tennessee stomp”.

2017 Albums That Were Submitted I Missed.

As I finish operation clean up from 2017, and begin to reflect on what all transpired, I have a couple stacks of albums I missed. I thought it might be a fun idea if I began a small series of articles that elaborate on some of these albums.  Some of them found their way in my email, and some were physically sent to me in the mail.

Brandon Luedtke : Morning Light
Impacting August 11th : Folk – Country – Americana
Hailing from Texas, Brandon Luedtke began writing songs when he was given his first guitar at age twelve. Since then, he has resided in Nebraska and NYC, later settling in Austin where over the last seven years, the singer-songwriter and musician has played in bands like Roosevelt’s Goody Bag, Honey Baby, and briefly with Shane Smith and the Saints on the fretless bass. More than ever, Luedtke has been honing his craft by writing and performing songs centered around his acoustic guitar and voice – carrying the torch of the Texas troubadour forward.

Earlier this year, Luedtke finished his debut LP, Morning Light, with producer, Eric Witthans in Austin’s Mockingbird Studios. The album showcases, Luedtke’s subtle feel for songwriting and musicians from the Austin music scene. Stylistically, Brandon is most easily categorized as a modern folk singer, but the songs on Morning Light will also fit perfectly into the Americana and Alt-Country world. The album features 9 Luedtke originals including the first two singles country tinged, steel driven “By The Light of The Moon” and folky “Can’t Get Away (From The Way of the World)”. Alongside those originals are reworkings of the traditional, “Cuckoo Song” and the gospel song “Soon One Morning”. Several of the songs have already debuted on websites across the country to great reviews. Following that are downloads and streams.

I recently listened to this album and really liked it, I can see him fitting in well with Americanafest lineups as well as a few more other festivals, since he came from the Texas area I was anticipating a more Red Dirt sound. This album was certainty a different twist than  what initially is described, with as much depth as a good Isbell album.

Some of the steel guitar work was pretty good and the songs all accompanied each other truly well, and when I am in the Americana mood this album will certainly be included into my rotation.


1. Can’t Get Away (From The Way of the World) (2:56)
2. The Cuckoo Bird (3:17)
3. Over The Interstate (2:44)
4. Black Mountain Echoes (3:56)
5. Let it Rise (3:21)
6. One of These Days (2:33)
7. New World (3:06)
8. Stay Gone (3:30)
9. Somethin’ Evil (4:13)
10. By The Light of the Moon (2:10)
11 Soon One Morning (2:21)

Matthew James And The Rust Belt Union: Impromptu Musical For The Skeptic

Now this next album I did indeed dwell very deeply on, I cannot even BEGIN to lump this band into ANY genre really? I mean the steel guitar is phenomenal but it’s THE TONE of it that really gripped my ears..What tuning is this? I plan to SOON reach out to steel picker Mr. Nathan Emerson when I bring back my steel pickers series in the future.

Mr. Matthew James – Acoustic Guitar / vocals, Mr. Wrex Hill – Drums, Mr.  Nathan M Emerson – Pedal Steel, Mr. Larry Kaster – Upright Bass, Mr. Nick Maurer & Brad Hanson – Electric Guitar and Mr. Matt Miller – Organ make up this eclectic band right here. This piece is from their press kit:

The Lowdown On The Live Album From The Earls Of Leicester


The CMA Music Theater at the Country Music Hall Of Fame has been bringing GREAT acts to the Hall Of Fame, like the Earls Of Leicester who blasted the Bluegrass scene up with their second album called “Rattle And Roar” in 2016. These boys have TWO FINE albums of material to pick through for a LIVE album, I anticipate a DANG FINE album.

The Earls of Leicester are the three-time IBMA Entertainer of the Year bluegrass group assembled by Jerry Douglas to present the music of Lester Flatt, Earl Scruggs, and their band, the Foggy Mountain Boys. Their self-titled debut album earned a Grammy Award for Best Bluegrass Album in 2015. The band’s music focuses on the music of Flatt & Scruggs during the period when the band consisted of Lester Flatt on guitar and lead vocals, Earl Scruggs on banjo and guitar, ‘Uncle’ Josh Graves on dobro, Paul Warren on fiddle, Curly Seckler on mandolin, and ‘Cousin’ Jake Tullock on bass. The band’s name is a play on the names of Earl Scruggs and Lester Flatt.

The Earls of Leicester consists of 14-time Grammy winner Jerry Douglas on Dobro, Shawn Camp on lead vocals and guitar, Charlie Cushman on banjo, Jeff White on mandolin, Johnny Warren on fiddle, and Barry Bales on bass. Douglas and Bales are also band mates in Alison Krauss & Union Station. These shows are going to be recorded for a future Earls of Leicester live record. Tickets are $34.50.

HERE is where you can go to order tickets.

Country Legend Ray Stevens Opens CabaRay.

You might recall recently that I wrote about Country Legend Ray Stevens Announced Opening CabaRay well everybody on January 18th 19th and 20th HE WILL DO JUST THAT! The grand opening celebration begins at this state of the art Nashville showroom in about a week. Now unfortunately they ran into some licensing kinks, and construction which prohibited them from opening  last year.

The entire complex is themed on Nashville and the industry that has been so good to Mr. Ray, and all of the walls will be adorned with pictures and posters of his career. The showroom features six red leather booths  named after Legendary producers like Chet Atkins, Owen Bradley, Shelby Singleton, Fred Foster, Jerry Kennedy and Billy Sherrill.

This complex will offer dinner theater style shows for 500 people downstairs and 200 people upstairs with theater style seating, a gift shop and many other accommodations. This is a 35,000 square foot complex  with free parking for 300 patrons, and even tour buses.  This complex is located in West Nashville at 5724 River Road.


Album Feature: Anderson East: Encore.

Album Feature : Anderson East – Encore

By Joshua Wallace

An encore is typically an artist’s way of saying thank you to an appreciative crowd. Anderson East’s new album is titled Encore and it is in many ways an encore of his 2015 album Delilah. He is once again working with Dave Cobb at the helm. Encore feels like it picked up right where Delilah left off but more polished. Anderson East still has his brand of southern soul mixed with country, blues and everything in between. Encore just improves on that in every way.

The album starts off with a surefire hit in “King For A Day”. Anderson East wrote this song with Chris and Morgane Stapleton and you can hear Chris’s influence in this song. The great co-writes don’t end there. He works with great writers such as Natalie Hemby, Adam Hood, pop sensation Ed Sheeran and even Swedish EDM producer Avicii. You would think an album with all of these mixed ingredients might not work, however it’s a testament to Anderson East that it works very well.

The Avicii track is titled “Girlfriend” and is filled with thick synthesizers and horns. It is different, but it’s still very much Anderson East. There are also some covers on this album. Anderson East takes Ted Hawkins’s acoustic blues number and turns it into an up tempo soul hit. He also re-works Willie Nelson’s sparse ballad “Somebody Pick Up My Pieces” from his Teatro album into a more full sounding southern blues ballad. “All On My Mind” is a track that was originally written by Ed Sheeran and Johnny McDaid, the same duo who were mostly responsible for writing Sheeran’s huge hit “Shape Of You”. Anderson East took the demo of “All On My Mind” from Sheeran thanks to some mutual management and made it his own. It’s a great song to serve as the lead single from the album.

It is clear that Anderson East has grown since recording Delilah, but his sound remains the same. Anderson East is one of many artists leading a revival in the old school soul and R&B sound. This album continues that and dives further into his blues and country influences as well. In many cases, if you hear that an EDM artist or a mega pop star such as Ed Sheeran worked on an album such as this, you would be justifiably worried. However, Anderson East takes these influences and melds them into his own work in way that stays true to his sound. If you were a fan, or even on the fence with Delilah, I highly recommend giving this record a shot. Encore is available everywhere music is sold.

Anderson East – Encore (2018)

  • King For A Day
  • This Too Shall Last
  • House Is A Building
  • Sorry You’re Sick
  • If You Keep Leaving Me
  • Girlfriend
  • Surrender
  • All On My Mind
  • Without You
  • Somebody Pick Up My Pieces
  • Cabinet Door

Favorite Tracks : King For A Day, Girlfriend, Sorry You’re Sick, If You Keep Leaving Me, All On My Mind

Joshua Wallace
Chief Staff Writer

Gary Hayes County

Album Feature: Mickey Lamantia: Every Bad Habit.

Album Feature : Mickey Lamantia – Every Bad Habit

By Joshua Wallace

I first came across Mickey Lamantia’s music thanks to the 2017 Tumbleweed festival lineup.  I was not present last year, so I did not see him live but I am the type of person who digs into artists based on being on festival lineups.  I liked what I heard on his Outlaw Life EP and I was excited to find out that he had a full length LP out in early 2018.

Mickey Lamantia is the definition of modern outlaw country.  Raw, real and he has a sound that respects those who came before him.  On Every Bad Habit, Mickey Lamantia aka ml750 provides his fans with their first deeper look to his brand of outlaw country.  After one listen, there is no question where he comes from and what cloth he was cut from.

Songs like “Take Our Country Back” express how Lamantia feels about current politics and the current state of country music.  The title track, “Every Bad Habit” dives even deeper and gives you an idea of his musical influences.  “When I Get On A Roll” is my favorite track on the album and was actually not written by Mickey Lamantia, but by Tony Stampley.  This track could be a hit on country radio if they played songs like this.  It has amazing songwriting and Mickey Lamantia nails the execution.  I’ll have this cut in my own rotation for a while.

There is an acoustic portion to this album that kind of takes the album to its core which is Mickey and his guitar singing these amazing songs just like he’d perform them at a solo acoustic gig in some random bar on a Saturday night.  These 3 acoustic tracks are just as hard hitting and amazing as the rest of the album.  I wish more artists stripped it down like this as a regular part of the album and not as bonus tracks of a deluxe edition or B-Sides on an EP.

Mickey Lamantia has released one hell of an album in Every Bad Habit.  If you’re a fan of outlaw country or just real country music, this one’s for you.  Every Bad Habit is available on digital outlets February 12th, 2018 and physical copies are available HERE.

Mickey Lamantia – Every Bad Habit (2018)

  1. Six Cans, Some Vinyl and You

  2. Every Bad Habit

  3. When I Get On A Roll

  4. Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms

  5. How Do I Say Good Bye (Acoustic)

  6. Take Our Country Back

  7. Heavy Dose Of You

  8. Whiskey On My Breath

  9. Outlaw Uprising (Acoustic)

  10. Outlaw LIfe (Acoustic)

Favorite Tracks : When I Get On A Roll, Every Bad Habit, Take Our Country Back, Six Cans, Some Vinyl and You, Outlaw Uprising

 Joshua Wallace

Chief Staff Writer

Gary Hayes County

Bobby Bare Continues To Shine In 2018.

Once you take a look at this video you’ll easily see why Bobby Bare’s album last year made my TOP 50 OF 2017. Director Mr. Max T Barnes son of Max D Barnes has directed a video masterpiece. Bobby Bare has had a wonderful year here on, playing many festivals I covered this year.

He, like many other Country Music Legends is also planning a 2018 album, and an extensive tour being one of Country Music’s more active Legends.  “’I Drink’ was written by one of my favorite songwriters, Mary Gauthier – she lived it. It’s a heart-wrenching story of alcoholism and the effects it can have on a family,” said Bobby Bare, adding, “I am proud of the depiction of the song through this video and hope it will sincerely touch people. If you’re struggling, get help, it could save your family and your life. I recommend AA as a starting point.”

2018 SPBGMA Nominees Are Announced.


The nominees for the 2018  Bluegrass Music Awards from the Society for the Preservation of Bluegrass Music of America have been announced. They will be presented in February at the 44th Annual SPBGMA Bluegrass Music Awards and 35th National Convention & Band Championship in Nashville.

In contrast to the IBMA, which takes a wide view in the question of just what bluegrass music is, SPBGMA hews much more closely to the traditions that informed the style in its earliest days. Nominees and final award winners are chosen by balloting among the membership, and attendees at the annual convention at the Sheraton Music City Hotel each winter.

And the nominees for the 2018 awards are…

Bluegrass Promoter of the Year

  • Norman Adams
  • Bob Auth
  • Ryan Frankhouser
  • DA Callaway
  • Melanie Wilson
  • Sammy Karr

Bluegrass Radio Station of the Year

  • WBRF-FM Galax, VA
  • WCHQ-FM Louisville, KY
  • WPAQ-AM, Mt. Airy, NC
  • Sirius XM 062-Bluegrass Junction
  • WBZI-AM, Xenia, OH
  • WSM-AM, Nashville, TN

Bluegrass DJ of the Year

  • Judith Burnette WBRF FM Galax, VA
  • Bob Mitchell WCHQ FM Louisville, KY
  • Tim Frye WPAQ AM Mt. Airy NC
  • Kyle Cantrell Sirius XM 062
  • Chris Jones Sirius XM 062
  • Cindy Baucom Knee Deep In Bluegrass

Bluegrass Songwriter of the Year

  • Larry Cordle
  • Donna Ulisse
  • Milan Miller
  • Eric Gibson
  • Daryl Mosley
  • Wayne Taylor

Bluegrass Album of the Year

  • Colors – The Farm Hands on Pinecastle Records
  • Let Them Know I’m From Virginia – Big Country Bluegrass on Rebel Records
  • In The Ground – The Gibson Brothers on Rounder Records
  • Life Is A Story – Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver on Mountain Home Music Company
  • Before Breakfast – The Grascals on Mountain Home Music Company
  • Silence In These Walls – Flatt Lonesome on Mountain Home Music Company

Bluegrass Bass Fiddle Performer of the Year

  • Tyler Wiseman
  • Michael Gregory
  • Gary Trivette
  • Mickey Harris
  • Mike Bub
  • Darrin Vincent

Bluegrass Dobro Performer of the Year

  • Gaven Largent
  • Tim Graves
  • Rob Ickes
  • Jerry Douglas
  • Dylan Armour
  • Josh Swift

Bluegrass Guitar Performer of the Year

  • Tony Wray
  • Rebecca Frazier
  • Keith Tew
  • Josh Williams
  • Kody Norris
  • Jacob Greer

Bluegrass Mandolin Performer of the Year

  • Tristin Norfleet
  • Zack Arnold
  • Alan Bibey
  • Larry Stephenson
  • Wayne Benson
  • Danny Roberts

Bluegrass Banjo Performer of the Year

  • Don Hill
  • Josiah Tyree
  • Tyler Thompson
  • Billy Lee Cox
  • Mitch Walker
  • Kristin Scott-Benson

Bluegrass Fiddle Performer of the Year

  • Gil Benson
  • Adam Haynes
  • Ron Stewart
  • Jamie Harper
  • Hunter Berry
  • Mary Rachel Nalley

Female Vocalist of the Year (Overall)

  • Brooke Aldridge
  • Amanda Smith
  • Dale Ann Bradley
  • Rhonda Vincent
  • Jeanette Williams
  • Sonya Isaacs

Male Vocalist of the Year (Overall)

  • Johnny Williams
  • Kody Noris
  • Jr Sisk
  • Russell Moore
  • Jacob Greer
  • Daryl Mosley

Bluegrass Gospel Group of the Year

  • Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers
  • The Farm Hands
  • The Churchmen
  • Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver
  • ClayBank
  • The King James Boys

Bluegrass Vocal Group of the Year

  • Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice
  • Carolina Blue Band
  • The Farm Hands
  • ClayBank
  • Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver
  • Branded Bluegrass

Bluegrass Instrumental Group of the Year

  • ClayBank
  • The Farm Hands
  • The Kody Norris Show
  • Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper
  • Branded Bluegrass
  • Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice

Bluegrass Band of the Year (Overall)

  • The Kody Norris Show
  • Branded Bluegrass
  • The Farm Hands
  • Remington Ryde
  • Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice
  • ClayBank

Bluegrass Entertainer(s) of the Year

  • Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver
  • The Farm Hands
  • Flatt Lonesome
  • Remington Ryde
  • Branded Bluegrass
  • ClayBank

Bluegrass Song of the Year

  • Burn The Barn – Big Country Bluegrass on Rebel Records
  • All My Life – Flatt Lonesome on Mountain Home Music Company
  • Rural Route – The Farmhands on Pinecastle Records
  • Life To My Days – Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver on Mountain Home Music Company
  • My Quiet Mind – The Gibson Brothers on Rounder Records
  • Sleeping With The Reaper – The Grascals on Mountain Home Music Company

Congratulations one and all. See you in February!


Music Festivals 2018: Bluegrass First Class.

On Feb 16, 17,18 and 19th at the Crowne Plaza Resort in Asheville North Carolina you will find this stellar lineup of GREAT Bluegrass music to entertain you in fine fashion. So first we shall talk about the lineup of bands before all the rest of the information here. As usual I shall post not only the poster but all of the band links too!

The 23rd annual Bluegrass First Class hosted by Festival Director Mr. Milton Harkey and his organization that is fiercely dedicated to the proliferation and promotion of Bluegrass music in all forms. He is by all means one of the modern day pioneers of his craft in many ways:

  • One of the founding fathers of the IBMA (June, 1985) and Chairman of the Board for 3 years.
  • Originator, founder and producer of The Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver Family Style Bluegrass Festival in Denton, NC (for 17 years)
  • Founder and host of the Pizza Hut International Bluegrass showdown, a talent search for bluegrass and acoustic bands throughout the US and Canada. Pizza Hut was the Title Sponsor.
  • Founding member of the South Carolina Bluegrass Society, Inc and Chairman of the Board for 3 years.
  • Producer of several bluegrass festivals: Fox on the Run Bluegrass Festival in Lexington, Little Mountain, SC, founder of the Kinston Winter Bluegrass Festival in Kinston, NC in conjunction with the Eastern North Carolina Bluegrass Association.
  • Disk jockey for 1 year with a 3 hour weekly show at WCOS-FM Radio, a 100,000 watt station located in Columbia, SC.
  • Event producer at the Quarter Moon Listening Parlor in Columbia, SC.
  • Harkey continues to spend his spare time working with young bluegrass artists by providing the opportunity to showcase their talents and achieve the recognition of seasoned bluegrass audiences nationwide.

Flatt Lonesome
Dailey And Vincent
Steve Gulley And New Pinnacle
Russell Moore And IIIrd Tyme Out
Doyle Lawson And Quicksilver
Rhonda Vincent And The Rage
Blue Mafia
Lonesome River Band
Seldom Scene

Some might fine looking accommodations embellish this festival and entice you to want to come and enjoy some music in this area folks, I highly suggest you come check out what they are doing out there. I can tell you previous experience that Asheville North Carolina is a gorgeous area. And the initial hotel that is hosting this event includes the ENTIRE HOTEL, this from their website:

There will be pickin’ around the clock in the halls, rooms, lounge, sunken lobby, and foyer. The entire hotel is reserved for bluegrass fans and performers – It’s all yours, so just have at it! There is one quiet wing in the hotel and in that area we respectfully request that there be no jammin’.

Asheville Rennissance

31 Woodfin St
Asheville, NC 28801
(828) 252-8211


Days Inn

201 Tunnel Rd
Asheville, NC 28805
(828) 252-4000

Free Hot Breakfast Each Morning

*Ask for the special Bluegrass rate: $73.10 + Tax

Album Review: Ghostwriter : String Noise And Dust.

I was first exposed to Ghostwriter’s music in the 2008 film called The Folk Singer.  Admittedly, he was not a highlight of the film for me but what I heard stuck with me.  Ghostwriter is a one man band with a sound that falls into the lo-fi punk inspired blues category.  His sound features haunted growling vocals backed with a thick distorted guitar and foot stomp percussion.  It fits right in with Left Lane Cruiser or The GD Gallows or even The Legendary Shack Shakers.

Ghostwriter’s new record is titled String Noise and Dust.  While Ghostwriter isnt reinventing the wheel, there is some diversity on this album.  There are slower tracks which showcase great songwriting and some faster tracks that show off his punk rock influences and just might start a mosh pit.

The album opens up with a barn burner called “Storm Clouds”.  It sets the album off rocking with a song that kicks up a lot of noise and dust to prepare you for the storm to come.  “How Many Times” showcases Ghostwriter’s skill with the banjo and great songwriting.  Another favorite is “Stagnation Blues” which brings together the distorted blues guitar and banjo for an amazing album closer.

One man bands bring an interesting sound and Ghostwriter adds to the diversity of the OMBs in the underground roots scene.  He brings a sound that is heavy, bluesy and full of distorted guitars and guttural growls.  This album will sit well with any Ghostwriter fan, new or long time.  String Noise and Dust is available everywhere digitally and on CD and LP from End Of The West Records.

Ghostwriter – String Noise and Dust (2018)


  1. Storm Clouds

  2. Lost

  3. Divine

  4. Harness

  5. How Many Times

  6. Shoreline

  7. Honor The Dead

  8. Ohio

  9. Folks

  10. Stars

  11. Gdmt

  12. Stagnation Blues

Favorite Tracks : Ohio, Storm Clouds, How Many Times, Stagnation Blues

Mr. Billy Yates Launches Songwriters In The Round In Branson, Mo.

You know before I indulge into anything Mr. Billy Yates has contributed to Country Music on a songwriter standpoint, I want to point out that he produced MY NUMBER ONE ALBUM OF 2017 Mr. Charley Pride. That album was just too magnificent to pass up on!

I mean damn, when you say Country Music you pretty much say Billy Yates because he has embellished it on so many levels it’s uncanny. In 2000 he accomplished what Music Row said was impossible…he put George Jones on FM radio with ‘Choices” from the Cold Hard Truth album. He also wrote “I Don’t Need Your Rocking Chair” and more for Jones.

I have stated this before and I shall again and again. Country Music has three staple pillars of it’s foundations, the producer, steel guitarist, and songwriter. if you have ALL THREE, you have a platinum album. So with that in mind here let’s dwell on the songwriters for just a moment. WHAT MADE these people write these hit songs we all revere so much? I mean REALLY…WHAT was the story behind Max Barnes writing “Chiseled In Stone” or Don Schlitz writing “The Gambler”?

Well on April 6th The Americana Theater in Branson brings us the Billy Yates Hit Songwriters In The Round which will be a weekly show featuring 90 minutes of intimate rounds with those that wrote the classics. Each show will include a meet and greet as well as other enjoyable happenings.

tickets for Billy Yates’ Hit Songwriters in the Round are available at the Americana Theater box office at 417-544-8700 or online at

Tickets for Raiding the Country Vault are available at the Starlite Theatre box office at 417-337-9333 or online at

April 6, 7, 8 – Kerry Kurt Phillips & Wynn Varble
April 13, 14, 15 – Byron Hill & Wil Nance
April 20, 21, 22 – Buddy Jewell & Leslie Satcher
April 27, 28, 29 – Clay Mills & Mark Irwin
May 4, 5, 6 – Max T. Barnes & Jeff Bates
May 11, 12, 13 – Jim McBride & Jimmy Payne
May 18, 19, 20 – Bobby Tomberlin & Steve Dean
May 25, 26, 27 – Guest host: Michael Peterson with LuLu Roman & Leona Williams

5 Shots With Fairbanks: Channing Wilson

Folks I wanted to take a moment to interject here about Mr. Channing Wilson, I recently covered his show
that Mr. Josh Fairbanks met him. This is where he approached Mr. Channing about doing this, as we were BOTH blown away at his performance. You can read the article HERE from 3rd And Lindsley.

Scott Ashworth

I first saw this weeks featured artist Channing Wilson on December 23rd 2017 at 3rd & Lindsley in Nashville. I was really impressed and asked him if he would be interested in doing an interview for my page and he was so I am happy to share that with you guys now. Please remember to like this page in orders to ensure you don’t miss any of the musician interviews coming up in 2018 and also please share this post cause the simple act of clicking share helps spread and strengthen the music that we all love.

Round 1 – How long have you been a touring musician and on average about how many shows do you play each year?

Channing – “I have been playing music for a living for 18 years. I’m playing somewhere between 150 and 200 shows a year right now.”

Round 2 – Do you have plans to release a new album anytime soon and if so is there any details you can tell us about it?

Channing – “I just released a live acoustic solo album called “Live from Eddie’s Attic” back in September. I have played solo/singer songwriter kind of shows for so long I wanted to put a solo record out. I will be going into the studio in 2018 to record my actual “debut album.“ all I really know right now about it is it will probably have a lot of new songs that I’m not playing right now.”

Round 3 – I know it’s hard, hell almost impossible but if you could pick one song to listen to before you die, what song would you choose and why does that song and those lyrics mean so much to you?

Channing – “You’re right. That’s almost an impossible question to answer, but I’ll give it a try. I would have to say “Desperados Waiting On A Train” – Guy Clark would probably be the one for me. It reminds me of my entire life. My childhood, my grandfather, and was the song I heard that really made me want to be a better songwriter. Not to mention it’s one of the most well written songs of all time.
Reading your question again, I could assume I was going to die as soon as the song was over. With that being said, I would like to change my answer to “one trillion bottles of beer on the wall.”

Round 4 – I love animals so I ask everyone this question but do you have any pets, if so can you tell us about them?

Channing – “Absolutely! I have a six month old Basset Hound named Hank JR. He’s a lovable stubborn little shit just like his daddy. He also has just started his own Instagram page. @hankwilsonjr ”

Round 5 – What is your favorite thing to do outside of the music World?

Channing – “I am always getting into something, but to answer your question I would say …
Hanging out with my kids, fishing, hunting, Netflix, coffee, cooking, driving, whiskey, good cigars, traveling, and more. ”

Last Call – This is an open question so tell your fans and the people reading this whatever you would like them to know.

Channing – “First of all I am a fan of country music. I love country music. I actually love all kinds of music but when I open my mouth to sing the genre pretty much chose itself. Second, please follow me on social media. It is so important nowadays. Reach out and say hi. Y’all help me spread the word that it’s a great time for country music again and we don’t have to be force-fed generic music that we don’t want. I also love turning people on to my talented friends and other artists they may not know so, here goes…
Brent Cobb, Dave Kennedy, Kendell Marvel, Chris Canterbury, Adam Hood, Tommy Ash, Eric Dylan. Thanks for your time see y’all on the road.”

Let’s All Gather And Love On Mr. Mel Tillis On January 31st.


This website is well known for heralding the impact of ALL our Country Music Legends of ALL times. I report on them when nobody else will, do you know how many people messaged me and said “I had NO IDEA Charley Pride” had anew album out?” See Mr. Charley was my NUMBER ONE album for 2017, you can elaborate more on that by reading it HERE.

I hear it all the time “GOLLY I didn’t know (so and so) was even still alive?” I partially blame my journalist constituents that  fail you, the reader for reporting very little on these people citing that “Nobody cares” or “It doesn’t garner enough hits on social media” initial response is who cares HOW MANY LIKES IT GETS? If it’s in your heart WRITE THAT ARTICLE.

So with that in mind if you remember in 2017 we lost Country Legend Mel Tillis to a lengthy  battle with an intestinal issue, he was better, he was not and so on and so forth..the fact remains he was loved and revered by US, his fans. My favorite song he did was an obscure one off the 1981 album Southern Rain called “Pyramid Of Cans”, and I’d like to tell you a few small things about that song.

It was penned by the Legend himself Mr. Buddy Cannon , whom at one time I got to talk to him a little about the song. It was quite an interesting conversation to say the least. But one really cool fact on this song was this, steel Guitar wizard Mr. Weldon Myrick was a prominent member of George Jones’s band “The Jones Boys” for many years, and also was a good session player.

BOTH Mr. Mel Tillis and Mr. George Jones recorded the song Pyramid Of Cans and took it to the top 10 of their respected year of release. The late Mr. Weldon Myrick played steel on BOTH recordings therefore he was the first steel player to do this.

On Wednesday January 31st at 10:00 AM, family and friends will gather at the historic Ryman Auditorium to honor the life and career of this Country Music Legend. Many relevany Country Music stars will assemble here to pay their respects and perform his music, the likes of Ricky Skaggs, Brenda Lee, Pam Tillis, Carrie April Tillis and the remaining members of the Statesiders. Jamey Johnson, Larry Gaitlin and the Gaitlin Boys, Alison Krauss, Collin Raye, Daryle Singletary, Lorrie Morgan, Ira Dean and Sonny Tillis.

Lonnie Melvin Tillis was born in Tampa, Florida on August 8, 1932. Throughout his 60+ year career, the Grand Ole Opry member recorded more than 60 albums, had 35 Top Ten singles, six #1 hits (“I Ain’t Never,” “Coca-Cola Cowboy,” “Southern Rains,” “Good Woman Blues,” “Heart Healer,” and “I Believe In You”), was named CMA (Country Music Association) Entertainer of the Year in 1976, and was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame the same year.

Tillis was elected a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2007. He wrote over 1,000 songs, 600 of which have been recorded by major artists including Kenny Rogers (“Ruby, Don’t You Take Your Love To Town”), George Strait (“Thoughts Of A Fool”), and Ricky Skaggs (“Honey, Open That Door”). Broadcast Music Inc. (BMI) named Tillis Songwriter of the Decade for two decades. In February of 2012 President Obama awarded Tillis the National Medal of Arts.

My 2017 Artist Of The Year.

Well friends and neighbors I want to take a moment here and reflect on some things. I’m amazed at the growth of my small operation here, and what began as a hobby has blossomed into an actual business. Now five years later I have others working for me, and I can now cover NEW festivals and NEW markets while they cover my festivals I am already established at.

I was blessed enough to travel to over 14 states last year, to many different music scenes and shows. I mean literally hundreds of live shows last year, seven festivals and I visited West Virginia for W.B. Walker’s Old Soul Radio Show anniversary show. I have sat in so many Honky Tonks and watched so many bands perform, and studied many a musician. It’s NOT easy to pinpoint just ONE special performer to crown as artist that shines above all others to say they deserve to be THE artist of the year…BUT….

After much contemplation and judgement I HAVE pinpointed that VERY band in Th Legendary Shack Shakers and Mr. J.D. Wilkes. I’m sure after you read this article you will also agree that Mr. J.D. does indeed deserve this hallowed honor above all honors on this website. See this isn’t only because of his music, this is bestowed upon him because of his passionate personal love of history and preservation of music and art in general.

First I’m going to go back a few years to Muddy Roots Music Festival two years back in 2016, where Mr. J.D. played a terrific solo set on the old wood stage. He brought out an old piano that they used on Tin Pan Alley, back in the day and took us on a journey into history, as he played songs like “Bible, Candle And Skull” from the album Pandelirium .

He taught us about the times of Tin Pan Alley, before and during the great depression, when it was actually the driving force of entertainment that began in New York and trickled into the entire country. It made me WANT to go home and READ and study about this little place on West 28th. His set left me with greater knowledge then whence I came, and THAT was a true gift from him to me. Knowledge is power and sharing this power is something I cannot repay him for, I can only repay him by thanking him in public for caring enough to play that set.

This past spring at the Nashville Boogie this band stood out above the rest for sure. I mean for God’s sake they came out and began thrashing around like we were in an old club downtown…but yet we were in a ballroom. On the other side of that curtain you had classic cars, on the other side you have Mr. J.D. Wilkes going bonkers onstage diving into the audience.

Easily one of the highest energy sets of the entire Boogie I’ll never forget the night after at the Nashville Palace where Mr. J.D. got up on stage and joined Hillbilly Casino’s Mr. Ronnie Crutcher for a harmonica battle. That place was FULLEST I had ever saw the bar packed, the crowd were packed in like sardines as Mr. J.D. and company once again tore up the joint with harmonica licks that needed no amplifications.

Th’ Legendary Shack Shakers have gone through changes in the past years, and put out albums going in several directions. But this past summer for the Muddy Roots Cookeville festival, my favorite Shakers lineup played BY FAR the most epic Muddy Roots set they have EVER played.

This lanky man danced around the stage and bellowed out song after song of those beloved hits like ‘No Such Thing”  and “Dump Road Yodel” as the rest of the band just absolutely went ape shit. We had gorgeous weather last year and a huge attendance with a full tent.

He began looking around for mischief to get into, I could tell by his peeking around the stage as the show progressed that this eclectic front man was planning an exhibit of both dexterity and showmanship. I mean for God’s sake we already paid for an entire festival, yet all of these bands continuously tried to outdo one another on stage.

Alas, Mr. J.D. Wilkes did indeed outdo everyone last year at Muddy Roots in my opinion. As they pounded out songs which included his classic harmonica and special mic, he sang and played UPSIDE DOWN hanging from the rafters BY HIS LEGS…you will see my buddy Dustin Doug in one of these pictures up above as he howls and raises his fists in pure delight upon this spectacle.

These performances make an absolutely amazing minded musician MY artist of 2017, hands down. There is not one iota of doubt in my mind as I type this that he does not deserve this accolade, and at this time the future of  Th Legendary Shack Shakers is once again strengthened as they hit my TOP 50 OF 2017 with their new album called After You’ve Gone.

Once again Mr. J.D. takes the fans to the days of old fashioned cartoon animation, with their new video that features Posey. You know this video is modeled after the Betty Boop era cartoons, rubber legs and such. You can read my TOP 50 article where I talk about it more. Once again he honors his adoration of history and old time entertainment, as he incorporates that with his music.

And now, soon he will be releasing his solo album, that will garner much attention on this website from my right arm Mr. Joshua Wallace. He will be reviewing this new album very soon, and I’ll of course juxtapose this article with that article for sure.


As we embark on 2018 here I am always on a quest to improve this website, and myself as your host. I study other websites for album releases and new, obscure bands for YOU to discover VIA this website. I mean isn’t that WHY YOU are here?

Last year was one hell of a fabulous year for music, and 2018 looks just as exciting because I have such an eclectic array of music I cover here.  So as I grow in other markets, while I maintain my presence in stronger ones I discover new bands every day.

So HERE is MY new list of albums I am anticipating and some I already have for 2018, and Mr. Joshua hasn’t sent me his review yet. IF YOU HAVE an album YOU want features email him at

Monzie Leo And The Big Sky
Johnny Dango
Devin Dawson
John Gorka
Tom McElvain
John Prine
Anderson East
The Clark County Drifters
Tim Easton
Charley Overby
Ugly Valley Boys
First Aid Kit
Ruby Boots
Brothers Osborne
Caitlyn Smith
Mikey Lamantia
Mary Gauthier
Brandi Carlisle
Courtney Patton
Red Shahan
Vivian Leva
Ashley Campbell
J.D.Wilkes (solo)
Dallas Moore
Craig Gerdes
Mike And The Moonpies
Caleb Caudle
Urban Pioneers
Brooks Dixon
Walker mcGuire
Dusty Rust
Ben Miller Band
Steep Canyon Rangers
Wade Bowen
Lindi Ortega
Sam Morrow
6 String Drag
Shawn Colvin
Caroline Rose
Darling West
Corey Nolan
Kacey Musgraves
Kaitliyn Alyse

ALL NEW IMPROVED 2018 live music guide.

If YOU have a show YOU would like added to my list PLEASE email me at I literally watch more than 40 venues in Nashville plus belong to many concert websites in order to bring you this coverage. NEW IN 2018, folks I am always looking for ways to enhance what I do for you. So this year I’ll be reporting on further Kentucky shows, and further Tennessee shows as well.

Folks WHATEVER YOU DO PLEASE support live venue music

Sarah Gayle Meech
Robert’s Feb ,7th, 8th, 10th, 15th, 17th, 21st, 22nd,24th

Sarah Gayle Meech
Layla’s Feb, 9th, 16th, 23rd,

Old Salt Union
Southgate House Feb 7th

Tommy Ash
The 5 Spot Feb 8th

Laid Back Country Picker
The Burl Lexington Ky Feb 8th

Justin Wells
Porter Union
Austin lance Howell
The Southgate House Feb 8th

Unkown Hinson
Exit Inn Feb 9th

The Basement Feb 10th

Tyler Childers
Bulls,Bands And Barrels in Lexington Ky Feb 10th

Wade Bowen
3rd And Lindsley Feb 10th

Infamous Stringdusters
Marathon Music Works Feb 10th

Steve Earle
Nashville Winery Feb 10th

Willie Watson
3rd And Lindsley Feb 11th

The Hardin Draw
The Boro bar Feb 17th

Suzy Bogguss
The Franklin Theater Feb 17th

3rd And Lindsley Feb 18th

Carson McHone
Jeremy Pinnell
The Southgate House Feb 20th

Missy Raines And The New Hip
Southgate House Feb 21st

The Warehouse Mt. Victor Feb 21st

Caleb Caudle
Basement East Feb 21st

Carson McHone
The Burl Feb 21st

Randy Rogers Band
Red Shahan
Marathon Music Works Feb 23rd

Logan Ledger
Pat Reedy And The Longtime Goners
Jeremy Pinnell
The Basement 23rd

Scott H Biram
Hooten Hallers
Southgate House Feb 23rd

Scott H Biram
The Basement Feb 24rth

The Hooten Hallers
The Family Wash Feb 24rth

Carson McHone
Dees Lounge Feb 25th

Brothers Osbourne
Natalie Hemby
Mac Davis
City Winery Feb 28th

A Man Called Stu
Springwater Supper Club March 7th, 14th,21st and 28th

Sarah Gayle Meech
Robert’s March 1, 3rd, 7th, 8th, 10th, 15th, 17th, 21st, 22nd, 24th, 29th, 31st

Sarah Gayle Meech
Layla’s March 2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd

Hogslop String Band
Cyo Brewing Owensboro Ky March 2nd

Railroad Earth
3rd And Lindsley March 4rth

Husky Burnette
The Nashville Palace March 7th

Aaron Lee Tasjan
Southgate House March 8th

The Hackensaw Boys
The Southgate House March 9th

Flatland Cavalry
The Basement March 9th

Aaron lee Tasjan
The Burl Lexington Ky March 9th

Jeff Austin Band
The Southgate House March 11th

The Bottle Rockets
Mercury Ballroom Louisville Ky March 15th

Travis Meadows
3rd And Lindsley March 18th

Sarah Shook And The Disarmers
The Basement March 23rd

The Goddamn Gallows
The Southgate House March 23rd

The Tillers Record Release
Pert Near Sandstone
Al Scortch
The Southgate House March 24rth

Urban Pioneers
Southgate House March 27th

Urban Pioneers
Nashville Palace March 28th

Lorin Walker Madsen
Lynaugh’s Pub Lexington Ky March 28th

Sunny Sweeney
3rd And Lindsley March 29th

Sunny Sweeney
Spillway Bar And Grill March 30th

The Supersuckers
Southgate House March March 30th

The Supersuckers
The Basement East March 31st

Unknown Hinson
Zanzabar Louisville Ky April 4rth

A Man Called Stu
Springwater Supper Club April 4rth

Lee Ann Womack
The Basement East April 6th and 7th

The Steel Woods
The Warehouse Mt. Victor April 7th

Emi Sunshine
Grand Theater Frankfort ky April 7th

The Tillers
Zanzabar Louisville Ky April 12th

Ray Wylie Hubbard
Willie’s Locally Owned April 12th

Josh Turner
Renfro Valley April7th

Shawn James
The Burl Lexington Ky April 17th

Dead Horses
The High Watt April 19th

David Allan Coe
Renfro Valley April 14th

Justin Wells
Manchester Music Hall Lexington Ky April 13th

John Moreland
Cannery Ballroom April 17th

Shawn James
The Southgate House April 18th

Charlie Robison
City Winery April 19th

Raelynn Nelson
O Connors April 20th

Lindi Ortega
The Basement April 20th

Gene Watson
Renfro Valley April 21st

Tim Montana
The Warehouse Mt Victor April 27th

The Barnyard Stompers
The Spillway Bowling Green Ky April 28th

Joshua Hedley
The Basement East April 24rth

Tracey Lawrence
Renfro Valley May 5th

William Clark Green
3rd And Lindsley May 12th

Margo Price
Ryman Auditorium May 20, 21 and 23rd

Kristiana Murray
Nashville Nashville Tn May 22nd

Ruby boots
Basement May 18th

John Moreland
Manchester Music Hall Lexington Ky

Dailey And Vincent April 28th

Colter Wall
Grand Theater May 18th

Ray Wylie Hubbard
Stoddart Family Farm Crawford Tn May 26th

Colter Wall
Louisville Palace Ky June 8th

The Reverend Horton Heat
Big Sandy And The Fly Rite Boys
Lara Hope And The Ark Tones
Southgate House June 13th

The Reverend Horton Heat
Exit Inn June 30th

The Blasters
Exit Inn July 1st

Shooter Jennings and Turnpike Troubadors
Beaver Dam Ampitheater August 4rth

Jimmy Fortune
Kentucky Opry August 25th

Album Review: Urban Pioneers – Hillbilly Swing Music
Hello everybody this is Gary Hayes here, and I would like to share with you this piece of information. ANYONE that would like to submit their albums to Gary Hayes Country please send it to the proceeding email.

Many bands are settling into their sound by their fourth studio album, but not the Urban Pioneers. Hillbilly Swing Music finds them continuing to refine their skills at western swing and country. This album still features the bluegrass and roots heavy sound you know and love, but they are also venturing out into other sonic landscapes.

Jared McGovern’s singing and songwriting has greatly improved and he feels right at home no matter what style of country and western he is performing with this band. Liz Sloan also feels more comfortable featured as a singer on this album. Her fiddle playing is as always one of the best parts of the band, and as always the upright bass duties are well played by Martin Sargent.

The title track sets the tone off right. It is one of three to feature pedal steel guitar work from Burton Lee. It’s a very dance able track that lets you know what you’re getting into from the start. “Run Little Rabbit Run” is a song that is more in the bluegrass tradition and it is in fact a traditional song that Jared wrote his own words for. It works and is one of the album’s many highlights.

Another favorite track of mine on this record is the light and fun “Kitty’s Favorite Day”. If you have ever owned a kitty, you know this is a true story, as silly as it is. I love how it’s fun and playful. The track is also one of two to feature the honky tonk piano styling of Basil McJagger. Another good track is the slower song “Tortured Orchard” which features the most diverse instrumentation for the Urban Pioneers yet with a dobro, a trumpet and a trombone. For all the diversity on this album, the Urban Pioneers didn’t forget where they came from. This album features plenty of songs that have the roots heavy Urban Pioneers sound you know and love.

A lot of bands tend to go stagnant by the fourth album, but the Urban Pioneers aren’t falling into that trap. They are continuing to refine their varied musical styles. This album ventures further into western swing than they have before with new instruments featured on the album to accomplish this. At the same time, they are remaining true to the sound they’ve always had and remain a roots heavy band with blistering fast banjo playing from Jared McGovern and some amazing fiddle playing by Liz Sloan. With Martin Sargent on bass, Urban Pioneers are a force to be reckoned with whether you’re hearing them on an album or live.

Hillbilly Swing Music is available now on various digital outlets with an official release date of January 23rd, 2018.

Urban Pioneers – Hillbilly Swing Music (2018)

1. Hillbilly Swing Music
2. Waste My Time
3. Why Don’t You Close Your Eyes
4. Throwed Out
5. Fast Money
6. Can’t Make You Love Me Too
7. Run Little Rabbit Run
8. Texas Wildflower
9. Flip, Flop, and Fly
10. Kitty’s Favorite Day
11. Smoky Mountains
12. Miller, Jack, and Maddog
13. Tortured Orchard

Favorite tracks : Hillbilly Swing Music, Run Little Rabbit Run, Kitty’s Favorite Day, Miller, Jack, and Maddog

Music Festivals 2018: Winterwondergrass Colorado.

BRRRRRR It’s cold out folks, my neck of the woods is completely covered in ice and snow. In fact I was just stuck in my house for four days and researching some more of these festivals that were turned in to my email box. One of them I noticed that are happening soon is the WinterWonderGrass Festival in the Colorado and California areas February 19-21st 2016. There is a California edition of this festival in April.

Now I’m not going to lie to you folks this one’s a little on the pricey side boasting up to 250.00 for 3 day pass VIP, but after I post the lineup you won’t want to miss this one if you are in the area! And there are single day passes for a more affordable price, however this festival would be HARD to choose which day to only get to see.This festival is held in the scenic Avon Colorado at Nottingham Park’s 48 acres of wildlife and nature. This piece from their website:

Known as the “Heart of the Valley” for its geographic location as well as its strong sense of community and family-friendly atmosphere, Avon is a great place for both residents and visitors. Whether skiing, hiking, paddling the Eagle River or enjoying a leisurely day in town, you’ll find that launching your mountain adventures from Avon is easy and convenient.

With 6,500 year-round residents, plus another 3,500 part-time residents, Avon offers a small mountain town atmosphere with many amenities. The town serves as a gateway to the world-class Beaver Creek Resort and is eight miles west of world-famous Vail. Avon also offers a multitude of recreational opportunities, special events, parks, open space and trails, and a mix of local and national shops and restaurants.

Honestly this festival looks to be one of the most kid friendly ones on my roster this year, under 12 is free and there are many activities for them to do while you are enjoying the music. And there are a few tents that have kids activities from 3-7PM.


This from the mailing list:
When we set out to create WWG it was never with the intention to build a big music festival, quite the opposite actually. We all wanted to get back to our roots, back to the loving space a community gathering cultivated and to re connect with nature. This is one of the reasons we have no plans to expand capacity or sell more tickets. Bigger is not better, we are committed to curating inspired smaller spaces to reignite the conversation and human connection.

We are dedicated to delivering a high-quality experience in high quality communities, combining artists that truly care about you with partners that align to our altruistic team vision.

If you plan to join us in 2018, and we very much hope you do, please grab your tickets early as we expect to sell out quickly.

This is an OUTDOOR EVENT and since it is winter time they ask you to PLEASE dress accordingly and smart in order to enjoy the music and festivities. There will be warm vendor tents and beer halls where you can enjoy beer while staying warm and they also have smaller stages. HERE is a link to purchase tickets for this event, and here is a daily schedule for you with performance times as well.

Greensky Bluegrass
Leftover Salmon
The Lil Smokies
Horseshoes And Hand Grenades
Elephant Revival
Billy Strings
Yonder Mountain String Band
The Travelin’ McCourys
Trout Steak Revival
Jon Stickley Trio
Grantful Dead Review
Old Salt Union
Ghost Of Paul Revere
Brad Parsons Band
Joy Roemer Band
The Wooks
The Good Time Travelers
We Dream Dawn

Comfort Inn
The Christie Lodge
The Charter At Beaver Creek
Riverwalk Suites

Coming in SPRING of 2018 to California.


5 Shots With Fairbanks: Scott Ashworth


Happy New Year’s everyone! I would like to kick 2018 off by introducing you all to my very talented kilt wearing brother from across the pond over in Scottland. He is not only a talented musician but also just a really nice guy. Please remember to like this page in orders to ensure you don’t miss any off the musician interviews coming up in 2018 and also please share this post cause the simple act of clicking share helps spread and strengthen the music that we all love.

Round 1 – What is the music scene like where you are from and what is it like trying to play country music there?

Scott – It’s a strange one over here. There is a big music scene, and lots of pubs and bars have live music, but the majority are only interested in you playing a real mixed bag 3hr set of cover versions. The country ‘scene’ is definitely growing over here in the UK though. It’s not necessarily the country music that I like or would like to play, but the interest is definitely there, largely because of that Nashville TV show I think. There is an annual festival over here now called Country2Country that draws some big names from across the pond, it’s had Reba, Miranda Lambert, Darius Rucker, Brad Paisley etc. Nobody yet that has made me want to buy a ticket though! That said, this rise in popularity of country music means that a lot of the acts that I do really like are starting to come across more frequently, so in 2017 I have managed to see Jason Isbell, John Moreland, Colter Wall, Brent Cobb, The White Buffalo all here in Scotland. People are starting to know that I love playing country, and because of people knowing about my trip across to the Ryman, I am starting to get asked to play Jinks stuff on some gigs, as well as stuff by Kristofferson and Merle eyc, which is great. Long may that continue.

Round 2 – Can you tell what your Nashville experience during Cody Jinks’ Ryman weekend was like?

Scott – I’m not sure I have enough space for this. It was absolutely incredible. Considering I only came across Cody Jinks because I was browsing Whitey videos on YouTube, and then discovered the Blacksheep ‘Flockers’ page just through searching Facebook to see if Cody had an official page, it has been amazing. From the sneaky set up of it all by Monica Lappa and Michael Gregory (and my wife) to getting there and witnessing the best show I have ever seen at The Ryman, it was the stuff of dreams. I have never been made to feel more welcome by a group of people in my life, and that is a testament to the good nature and generosity of the Flockers. At every turnz there was something else that I wasn’t expecting, or where the stars just seemed to align to make the trip better, like finding out that the Buffalo Ruckus, one of my favourite bands, were travelling in to Nashville to play a 1hr set 45 minutes after I landed at the airport. Honestly, words will never really be able to do justice to that weekend. The Ryman is the most special place I have ever watched a show, and to share the experience with so many people that I have come to consider great friends was very very special.

Round 3 – Where can people hear your music, do you have an EP or anything out they can buy?

Scott – So I have an EP called Drifting Away available on all the main digital platforms like Spotify, iTunes, Amazon, Deezer etc. I do love performing my original stuff, but I just don’t normally get that much opportunity, but 2018 is already throwing up a few more opportunities, with support slots to some very talented singer/songwriters, so I’m looking to do quite a bit more writing with a view to getting either a longer EP out or a full album later in the year.

Round 4 – I am an animal lover so I ask almost everyone this, do you have any pets and if so can you tell us about them?

Scott – At the moment, we have a couple of fish and a cat named Charlie. We did have a dog, a beautiful Hungarian Vizsla named Riley, but she passed away when she was just 2 back in 2016. We haven’t been able to bring ourselves to get another dog yet, so went and got Charlie instead from the Cats Protection League, which sounds like some kind of sinister feline army, but is just a cat rescue place.

Round 5 – What’s your favorite things to do outside of music?

Scott – My other big hobby is fishing, although I don’t get that much time to do it these days, as I work full time and am then out gigging every weekend. But I have fished for 40 years and it will always be part of me. These days, it’s mainly Pike Fishing that I do when I do manage to get out. Fishing and sitting down with my guitar are the two most relaxing things for me, where I can lose all the pish and stress that have come out of the day job and just let any worries disappear. Last Call – Open message to say what ever you want people to know. Scott – Well, to all the people in the States and further afield who I have got to know over the course of the last 15 months through music, a massive thank you for taking this sweary British fella into your fold. Thanks to those who have had a listen to my little EP and said kind words of encouragement. And finally just keep spreading the word about all the great music that is out there. There is definitely a change a’coming in Country music and it’s because people like the folk that follow this page and because people like you Josh, are spreading the message, sharing shit hot music by extremely talented artists, and fighting together to make sure people know about ‘real’ music. Thanks guys.


New Year’s Eve With Whitey Morgan And Guests.

Tonight ,I braved some bitter cold on a new year’s eve night to go up to Glasgow Kentucky to a venue I have never reported a show from before, The Plaza Theater. Tonight is a special night for life and’s a first for MANY things for yours truly over here. Honestly I have no idea where to begin on the new, I try my best to keep this into the music only and not too personal but I HAD to share this..

Tonight is the first new year’s eve I have not drank any alcohol of any type for the entire duration of the night, in fact I haven’t had anything to drink in two weeks. I had to stop physically, my liver was damaged dramatically. So NOW I will just listen to songs about whiskey and barrooms instead of imbibing myself, to be completely honest I don’t miss it far..

So now on to my next FIRST here tonight which I am proud of. I am reporting tonight from the Plaza Theater in Glasgow Kentucky in the second row for Mr. Whitey Morgan And The 78’s who played tonight with guests Mr. Ward Davis and Mr. Alex Williams. Also playing tonight was Mr. Josh Card And The Restless Souls. Now if you have never been to a show at the Plaza Theater , you need to experience it sometime. I already have an inside joke with the manager..they have REALLY good security. Well, this media job isn’t always backstage passes and free food, rules are rules and it’s understandable even with knowing all of the parties for this round folks NO videos.

If you will recall from last weekend I reported on Mr. Ward Davis and Tennessee Jet, with Mr. Channing Wilson you can read that RIGHT HERE. So tonight is the first time I have covered any band (or artist) twice in two weeks.ALSO, last night my TOP 50 OF 2017 was released. And Mr. Alex Williams is on that said list, so this is the first time I have covered a TOP 50 act the same night the list drops! Ergo, I am VERY ecstatic to elaborate on this show tonight.

The venue is a VERY beautiful and historic building with a pleasant ambiance and really cushy seats. A very nice front area before the stage, ample parking and a balcony. Also the handicapped area was quite spacious and nice. One of the only complaints was the bathroom set up was not enough to accommodate a full house. The theater was REALLY cold inside, however tonight is deathly freezing out, unseasonably cold indeed. ..and there were ample exits. The staff was EXTREMELY FRIENDLY and made it a very enjoyable show, EVERY member greeted me and wished a happy new year..several asked me if I needed seating location help. This venue rivals the Opry indeed!

The first up was Mr. Josh Card and the Restless Souls (you can buy his album on his name up above), is actually a side project of the acoustic guitar wizard you see onstage with Whitey Morgan.  You know much like the old days when Ernest Tubb wielded his Texas Troubadours all over America, The 78’s bear their own tight sound. They make Whitey Morgan Whitey Morgan if that makes any sense, I’m sure he would agree . I firmly believe his sound would change if he lost any of the members right now, you know E.T.’s sound DID change with the rotation of steel guitarists and drummers (in what I call) evolutionary periods of his tenure. Ergo, out of those times some of Country Music’s most influential stars emanated from the Texas Troubadours..I deem this is what we are seeing begin here with Mr. Josh

His 10 song album that was released in 2017 (that sounds weird) was impressive to me here, and although it didn’t make my TOP 50 it WAS an essential album to buy..SO GO CLICK UP THERE AND BUY IT. Yes from the very first song called “Go On And Get Gone” is a terrific song about kicking out a girl that throws the past in your face constantly. Usually within a week she’s back apologizing, and you just say GO ON AND GET GONE!

Mr. Cameron Cochran played some MIGHTY FINE steel guitar on this album here for this song “Call My Name” I pretty much related this to the alcohol calling my name at times, LAST NIGHT was funny to be sober when watching all these Morgan fans getting wasted in this fancy theater. Being drunk is FINE as long as YOU have a ride home, I’m hoping nobody was arrested last night. Find a NEW ME and I changed everything was a powerful lyric in that song.

I spoke to him not long ago and he told me that “History is everything, It’s what lays the guidelines for us to continue and innovate us as we go”. So the choices of covers he played here after the song “Meet Me’, were further proof of that statement.  “Never Go around Mirrors” was a hit for Lefty Frizzell  in 1973 which was also penned by Sanger  D. Shafer , however Mr. Josh played in in the 80’s style of Mr. Keith Whitley, additionally Merle Haggard made it a hit, Gene Watson, Daryle Singletary…etc… speaking of Merle Mr. Josh played ‘the Bottle Let Me Down”.

Back to originals here he played “Chase You Away” before playing “Bar Exam’. Originally I first heard this one in 2001 by the Derailers, however I’m not sure if indeed that was a cover of some rare B side I haven’t uncovered yet. But honestly that’s the FUN of this journalism gig, finding information like that.

Mr. Alex Williams made my TOP 50 Of 2017, with an impressive compilation of songs and right now he is in the works for a new album already. he played a new song halfway into his set called “Hard Living Blues”. I wish I could have recorded that on video but I was under a no video policy for this article.

“Hellbent Hallelujah” was the opener here as her just barreled into the rest of his list. He did very little speaking and acknowledged the crowd with a musical assault of Outlaw badassery. “Little Too Stoned”  was a prime example of the prime Honky Tonk beat that encompass Outlaw Country in today’s day.

He closed his portion of the show by switching to his acoustic guitar and playing the song he wrote about his grandfather called “Old Tattoo”. That song pretty much moved this album to “Definite Top 50 Worthy” and one reason why I placed it on there.

As I previously stated I covered Mr. Ward Davis last weekend and had a LOT of fun there, this set being a little shorter than previous. He opened with “Nothing At Home” and the song that Mr. Ray Scott wrote called “Pappa And Mamma”, which addresses physical abuse.

He brought the house down once again with the beautiful ballad called ‘Old Wore Out Cowboys” that garnered help from the likes of Jamey Johnson and Willie Nelson. Speaking of Willie Nelson he played a cover of the “Highwaymen”, as he does in every set. But perhaps the highest pinnacle of his set is the song he wrote with Mr. Cody Jinks called ‘I’m Not The Devil”. Pretty much every show he has us ALL singing along to that one.

His set closed with “Get To Work Whiskey” and finally his title track to his album called ’15 Years In A 10 Year Town”. I might have to break off of the Outlaw scene for a few weeks to cover other genres for sure, but YOU KNOW I’ll be back to it soon….now for Whitey Morgan.

His self titled 2010 release contained the first song “Bad News” which opened the show tonight, and set the tone for the evening with “Buick City Blues”. Both of these songs were on his recently released live from flint, and in 2018, I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of a NEW Whitey Morgan album.

I absolutely adore the pop and twang intro to the song “Cocaine Train” which was made popular by Johnny Paycheck, although I truly enjoy their version  of this song, along with “Low Down On Backstreet”. That song was off their 2015 album Sonic Ranch. “Back To Back” was from their first album,which I really enjoyed.

This was a gargantuan set tonight down here, with songs from days of old like ‘Prove It All To You” from the first album. We were treated to a terrific version of “Still Drunk Still Crazy And Still Blue”. That song was made popular by Scott H Biram and also included was “Honky Tonk Queen”.

The song that was written by Country Legend Dale Watson called “Where Do You Want It” which is about Country Legend Billy Joe Shaver asking a well deserving idiot where he wants to be shot. Another really good song in this set was “Goin’ Down Drinking”, off the 2015 album Sonic Ranch. “Crazy” was one of the songs off the second album along with “Memories Cost A Lot”.

Whitey leads his band with great poise up there onstage and has evolved into a true figure that represents Outlaw Country music quite well. I could tell he wasn’t feeling well last night but ergo, he gave it 100 percent by all means. With songs like “I Ain’t Drunk”, he ushered in the new year with us in fine Outlaw style. He closed with the Marshal Tucker Band ‘Fire On The Mountain” before going into his encore, and re entering the stage area.

His encore contained “Sinner” and another favorite he does “Waiting Round To Die”. Ultimately this show was a blockbuster fashion to spend my new years eve in my NEW sober state. It’s NOT really that bad being the sober one at all these music shows, after all it’s MY job to remember what was played so YOU can enjoy THESE articles.