Americana Boogie Best Music of 2017

Here’s Bill Frater’s picks for the best music of 2017. As is usually the case, my Top 10 ends up being a Top 20, also I decided to select some favorite songs of the year. Please send me your picks for best music and I’ll post some here. Here’s to a great Christmas and holiday season and a Happy New Year.

 

1, Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit The Nashville Sound
2. 
Margo Price All American Made
3.
 Marty Stuart and the Fabulous Superlatives Way Out West
4. John Moreland  Big Bad Luv
5. Rhiannon Giddens Freedom Highway 
6. Tyler Childers –  Purgatory
7. Steve Earle & The Dukes So You Wannabe an Outlaw
8. Lee Ann Womack The Lonely, The Lonesome & The Gone
9. Chris Hillman Bidin’ My Time
10. Zephaniah OHora and The 18 Wheelers This Highway 

 

also great…

Angaleena Presley – Wrangled
Colter Wall –  Colter Wall 
Jeremy Pinnell
Ties Of Blood And Affection
Lillie Mae
 Forever and Then Some
Amber Cross Savage on the Downhill
Bill Scorzari – Through These Waves
Travis Meadows
 First Cigarette
Dori Freeman Letters Never Read

 

Favorite songs of the year…

Bobby Bare – Things Change  Things Change
Lukas Nelson & Promise of The Real – Find Yourself  Lukas Nelson & Promise of The Real
Rodney Crowell – It Ain’t Over Yet  Close Ties
Dave Rawlings – Yup  Poor David’s Almanack
Rachel Baiman – Shame  Shame
Shelby Lynne & Allison Moorer – Not Dark Yet  Not Dark Yet
David Luning – Driftin’ Restless

 

Coming out early next year… Tommy Emmanuel, The Steep Canyon Rangers, The Ben Miller Band, Sam Lewis, Mary Gauthier, Brandi Carlile, Caleb Caudle, Lisa Morales, Calexico 

Check out Americana Boogie Radio station!

Posted in Americana Music, New music releases | Leave a comment

Americana Music Releases for the week of Dec. 8th

Here’s all the best Americana and roots-type music releases for December 8th, 2017. As the year draws to a close, this will probably be the last week of new releases until next year. Click the artist or album links to find out more. The artist’s names link to their websites and the CD title links go to either Amazon, CD Baby or the artist’s site for ordering or downloading.

Robert Ellis & Courtney Hartman
Dear John (Refuge Foundation for the Arts)

John Hartford is not a household name but he certaily should be. Though years after his death in 2001, he’s up there amongst the treasured gods in the eyes of so many modern working artist. He’s certainly an influence on Robert Ellis and Courtney Hartman, who toured together and developed an artistic symbiosis on the road before recording Dear John, their tribute to the work of Hartford released through Cory Chisel and Adriel Denae’s Refuge Foundation for the Arts.

Shovels & Rope 
Busted Jukebox Volume 2 (New West Records)

Two years after the first iteration — which featured team-ups with Shakey Graves, Lucius, Preservation Jazz Hall Band, and more covering famed cuts from the likes of Elvis Costello, Guns N’ Roses, and Nine Inch Nails — the folk-rock duo (and real-life couple) are ready to share version two. This one features S & R’s Cary Ann Hearst and Michael Trent joined by Brandi Carlile, Hayes, Carll, John Moreland, and others covering everybody from Leonard Cohen to Willie nelson to The Breeders.

Also new this week…

Emily Clement – Dying to Know  (Mastermind Recordings)
Ian Cory Craft – Ian Cory Craft  (Mastermind Recordings)
Chris Thile – Thanks for Listening (Nonesuch Records)
Cody Jinks – 
Less Wise (Modified Reissue 2017)  (Cody Jinks Music)
Various Artists – Farewell, Alligator Man: a Tribute to the Music of Jimmy C. Newman  (Valcour Records)
Various Artists – At the Louisiana Hayride Tonight  (Bear Family Records)  (20-disc box set)

,

Coming out early next year… Tommy Emmanuel, The Steep Canyon Rangers, The Ben Miller Band, Sam Lewis, Mary Gauthier, Brandi Carlile, Caleb Caudle, Lisa Morales 

Check out Americana Boogie Radio station!

Posted in Americana CD releases, Americana Music, Country music new releases, Nashville, New music releases, Roots Music | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Americana Music Releases for the week of Dec. 1st

Here’s all the best Americana and roots-type music releases for December 1st, 2017 as the year draws to a close. Click the artist or album links to find out more. The artist’s names link to their websites and the CD title links go to either Amazon, CD Baby or the artist’s site for ordering or downloading.

 

Chris Stapleton
From A Room: Volume 2  (Mercury Nashville Records)

Few would have predicted Chris Stapleton’s dominance earlier this decade, but he’s commanded the spotlight for long enough now — through show-stealing televised performances, major awards show wins and enviable album sales —to bring what it is about him that people are responding to into focus. The 39-year-old Kentucky native relies on Dave Cobb, Nashville’s leading studio naturalist, to capture the leathery twang and blues-basted analog brawn of his power trio, in which it falls upon Stapleton to supply both sinewy rhythm guitar and snarling lead licks. Adult fans have received his sound as a rebuke of glossy, beat-driven country-pop trends. There’s no clutter to it, nothing to hide behind, nothing competing with the furnace-blast force of Stapleton’s belting. Wise and sensitive storyteller that he is, he knows that deprivation and loss are felt the most deeply when it’s clear what’s at stake. It’s no wonder so many fans have come to count him as a musical hero.  (from NPR’s First Listen)

 

Neil Young & Promise of The Real
The Visitor (Reprise Records)

When Neil Young entered Shangri La Studio with the band Promise Of The Real a few months ago, there were a lot of images and feelings careening around his soul. The country was heading in a direction Young had never seen, even though up until then he thought he’d seen it all. But something different was happening, and it had gotten inside his music. “I’m a Canadian by the way and I love the USA,” he sings on the first song “Already Great.” The ethos of The Visitor can be summed up in the refrain of “Already Great” where Young insists, “Already great, you’re already great. You’re the promise land, the helping hand. No wall. No hate. No fascist USA.”  From those words, Neil Young was ready to take a musical journey on his new album like he had never taken before. It was one where he’d even surprise himself, always the mark of a creative leap. By the end of the recording sessions, he knew he’d made his most diverse album going all the way back to Harvest in 1972, when America was also in the throes of becoming unhinged. Neil Young didn’t blink then, and he is not blinking now. (from press release)

Also new this week…

Grayson Capps – Scarlett Roses  (The Royal Potato Family)
Loose Cattle – 
Seasonal Affective Disorder  (Low Heat Records)

 

Coming out soon… Robert Ellis & Courtney Hartman, Tommy Emmanuel, The Steep Canyon Rangers, The Ben Miller Band, Lisa Morales 

Check out Americana Boogie Radio station!

Posted in Bluegrass, Country music new releases, Music, New music releases, Roots Music | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Americana Music Releases for the week of Nov. 17th

Here’s all the best Americana and roots-type music releases for November 17th, 2017 as the year winds down. Click the artist or album links to find out more. The artist’s names link to their websites and the CD title links go to either Amazon, CD Baby or the artist’s site for ordering or downloading.

 

Birds of Chicago
American Flowers
  (Signature Sounds Recordings)

Husband and wife, JT Nero and Allison Russell had recently finished recording a new album Love in Wartime, to be released next year. Nero had a suite of songs that didn’t feel quite at home on the new one. Having relocated to Nashville, they decided to throw themselves their own welcome to town party by recording an acoustic E.P. at Steve Dawson’s Henhouse Studio. The E.P.  rounds out Birds of Chicago’s offering of healing, communion and celebration of life in a dark and troubled time. Proceeds from American Flowers will benefit Chicago’s South Side based Teen Living Programs – a non-profit that builds community, hope and opportunity for youth who are homeless and at risk.

 

Also new this week…

The Hens – Chicon (Topless Records)
Darrell Scott – Live at the Station Inn  (Soundly Music)
Mavis Staples – 
If All I Was Was Black   (Anti/Epitaph Records)
Various Artists – Bloodshot Records’ 13 Days of Xmas  (Bloodshot Records)
Jim White – 
Waffles Triangles & Jesus  (independent)


Coming out soon… Chris Stapleton, Robert Ellis & Courtney Hartman, Tommy Emmanuel , The Steep Canyon Rangers, Lisa Morales 

Check out Americana Boogie Radio station!

Posted in New music releases | Leave a comment

Americana Music Releases for the week of Nov. 10th

Here’s all the best Americana and roots-type music releases for November 10th, 2017. Click the artist or album links to find out more. The artist’s names link to their websites and the CD title links go to either Amazon, CD Baby or the artist’s site for ordering or downloading.

Parker McCollum
Probably Wrong
  (independent)

Strikingly brilliant of composition, richly diverse, both progressive and traditional, a tour de force of songwriting, and incredibly textured with strong instrumentation, Probably Wrong has just about everything you could want from any record, whether you count yourself a country fan, more of an Americana type, a country rocker, or whatever may be in between, man or woman, young or old. Whatever your roots music persuasion, Parker McCollum seems to have you covered, as long as you’re willing to open your heart to a new name, and a forward-thinking approach to a powerful expression of country music. (from Saving Country Music)

Also new this week…

Brother Roy – Last Man Standing
(independent)
Langhorne Slim – Lost At Last Vol. 1  (Dualtone Music Group)
Packway Handle Band – Go On Get Up  (independent)
The Railsplitters – Jump In (independent)
Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats – Live At Red Rocks (Stax Records)
Dan Reeder – Nobody Wants to Be You  (Oh Boy Records)
Buffy Sainte-Marie – Medicine Songs  (True North Records)

Coming out soon… Mavis Staples, Jim White, Birds of Chicago, Chris Stapleton, Lisa Morales 

Check out Americana Boogie Radio station!

Posted in Americana CD releases, Americana Music, Bluegrass, Country Music, Country music new releases, New music releases, Roots Music | Leave a comment

Americana Music Releases for the week of Nov. 3rd

Here’s all the best Americana and roots-type music releases for November 3rd, 2017. Click the artist or album links to find out more. The artist’s names link to their websites and the CD title links go to either Amazon, CD Baby or the artist’s site for ordering or downloading.

 

Samantha Fish
Belle of the West  (Ruf Records)

Fish recorded Belle of the West in the relaxed, rural creative atmosphere of the legendary Zebra Ranch Studios in the North Hills of Mississippi with producer Luther Dickinson (of North Mississippi Allstars fame), with whom she worked previously on her 2015 album Wild Heart. The studio team included some of the region’s most iconoclastic musicians, including Dickinson, solo artist and Jack White associate Lillie Mae, much-traveled juke-joint blues artist Lightnin’ Malcolm, Squirrel Nut Zippers founder Jimbo Mathus, upright bassist and beloved solo artist Amy LaVere, Tikyra Jackson, Trina Raimey and Shardé Thomas, granddaughter of the legendary Southern bluesman Otha Turner.

 

Scott Miller
Ladies Auxiliary  (F.A.Y. Recordings)

Fiery roots-rock singer/songwriter Scott Miller presents Ladies Auxiliary, his first album in four years. Raised on a cattle farm in Virginia, and well- versed in topics ranging from Greek mythology to modernist poetry.  A founding member of Knoxville-based V-Roys, Miller’s raucous style influenced the newer generation of Alt-Country revelry and what is now known as Americana. The album title is a tip of the hat to Miller’s backing band for this recording: Bryn Davies (bass); Rayna Gilbert (fiddle/banjo); Jen Gunderman (keys); Deanie Richardson (fiddle); Megan Carchman (drums) and Anne McCue (guitar and producer). The results are another testament to Scott’s uncanny ability to reach the listener with tuneful melodies wrapped around thoughtul lyrics and topical subject matter. (from press release)

Also new this week…

Big Head Todd and The Monsters – New World Arisin’  (Big Records)
Blitzen Trapper – 
Wild and Reckless  (LKC Recordings)
Jim Byrnes – 
Long Hot Summer Nights
  (Black Hen Music)
The Contenders – Laughing with the Reckless  (Rock Ridge Music)
Tommy Emmanuel & David Grisman – Pickin’  (Acoustic Disc)
Drew Kennedy – At Home in the Big Lonesome (Atlas Aurora Records)
Boris McCutcheon – I’m Here Let Me In
(independent)
The Ribeye Brothers – All Hat, No Cattle  (MainMan Records)

 

Coming out soon… Packway Handle Band, Mavis Staples, Birds of Chicago, Dan Reeder, Chris Stapleton 

Check out Americana Boogie Radio station!

Posted in Americana CD releases, Americana Music, Country music new releases, Music, Nashville, New music releases, Roots Music | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Americana Music Releases for the week of Oct. 27th

Here’s all the best Americana and roots-type music releases for October 27th, 2017. Click the artist or album links to find out more. The artist’s names link to their websites and the CD title links go to either Amazon, CD Baby or the artist’s site for ordering or downloading.

 

The Wailin’ Jennys
Fifteen (Red House Records)

Fifteen is the first recording in six years from contemporary folk’s The Wailin’ Jennys. An entrancing collection of cover songs, it includes tunes by Tom Petty, Emmylou Harris, Paul Simon and Dolly Parton, “Fifteen is an auspicious outing, not only because it marks the group’s decade and a half long anniversary, but also the fact that even with the barest arrangements and most intimate accompaniment, these three women can successfully combine as a singular force.” (excerpt from Country Standard Time)

Lee Ann Womack
The Lonely, The Lonesome & The Gone
 (ATO Records)

Womack has long been known for her singing voice, a pedigree that extends back to her mainstream country roots in the late 1990s and has been a primary focus of her career ever since. And rightfully so. Start-to-finish, The Lonely, The Lonesome & The Gone has a cinematic quality to it, one buoyed both by lush, dynamic arrangements and by a skillfully executed sequence, which effortlessly ebbs and flows between torch songs (the smoldering “He Called Me Baby”) and Texas twang (the jagged crunch of “Wicked”), giving equal credence to the bedroom (the sweet and clever “End of the World”) and the bar (the laid-back shuffle of “Bottom of the Barrel”). The album is bookended by stirring vocal performances, it’s an album that shows Womack to be one of American roots music’s foremost auteurs, one with a compelling voice for storytelling and the vision to use it to powerful effect. (edited from NPR’s First Listen)

Also new this week…

Billy Burnette – Crazy Like Me  (Rock & Roll With It Records)
Peter Case – 
On The Way Downtown: Recorded Live on Folkscene   (Omnivore Recordings)
Chamomile & Whiskey – Sweet Afton 
(independent)
The Deep Dark Woods – Yarrow
 (Six Shooter Records)
Ronnie Fauss – 
Last Of The True  (Normaltown Records)
Joe Henry – Thrum  (earMUSIC)
The Infamous Stringdusters – 
Undercover, Vol. 2  (Lumenhouse Recordings)
Mile Twelve – Onwards   (independent)

Thor Platter – 
Take Time  (independent)
Various Artists – The Life & Songs of Kris Kristofferson  (Blackbird Production Partners)

Coming out soon… Scott Miller, Packway Handle Band, Jim Byrnes, Samantha Fish, Big Head Todd and The Monsters, Mavis Staples, Dan Reeder, Chris Stapleton 

Check out Americana Boogie Radio station!

Posted in Americana CD releases, Americana Music, Bluegrass, Country Music, Country music new releases, New music releases, Roots Music | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Americana Music Releases for the week of Oct. 20th

Here’s all the best Americana and roots-type music releases for October 20th, 2017. Click the artist or album links to find out more. The artist’s names link to their websites and the CD title links go to either Amazon, CD Baby or the artist’s site for ordering or downloading.

Dori Freeman
Letters Never Read  (Blue Hens Music)

Dori Freeman’s music subtly intervenes in simplistic takes on her native region, Galax, Va., which has hosted an annual old-time fiddle gathering for more than eight decades. She values her lifelong exposure to living musical traditions, but doesn’t allow her reverence to overshadow her gift for distilling Appalachian melancholy into delicate pop ruminations. Her new album, the second she’s recorded with Teddy Thompson producing, is even more fetching in its finessing of contradictions than its predecessor. What’s striking is that Freeman’s interpretations of down-home material are deliberately spare, yet no less elegant.  She covers “Yonder Comes a Sucker,” made famous by Jim Reeves in the 1950s,into a softly swinging romp, while she brings a patient, knowing quality to the frailing banjo number “Over There,” The ease with which Freeman knits together sturdiness and sophistication is a revelation, and one that’s arrived right on time.  (edited from NPR First Listen)

 

Margo Price
All American Made  (Third Man Records)

“These songs (written both by myself and with my husband) were born while traveling America – between the highways and hotel rooms, in the crowded airports and all-night diners and occasionally, on the green grass of our Tennessee home,” states Price on her website. While Midwest Farmer’s Daughter was autobiographical, Price looks outward in several songs on his 2nd album. “Pay Gap” and “Wild Women” tackle inequality. The title track layers excerpts from Patti Smith’s recording of “Spell,” as well as speeches by Martin Luther King Jr., Richard Nixon, Bill Clinton and others

 

Also new this week…

Bob Bradshaw – American Echoes  (Fluke Records)
Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn – 
Echo In The Valley (Rounder Records)
Monocle Band – The Clearing (independent)
Porter and The Bluebonnet Rattlesnakes – Don’t Go Baby It’s Gonna Get Weird Without You  (Cornelius Chapel Records)
Nora Jane Struthers – Champion (independent)
Turnpike Troubadours – 
A Long Way From Your Heart   (Bossier City Records)
(Dan) Tyminski – Southern Gothic  (Mercury Nashville)

Coming out soon… Lee Ann Womack, The Deep Dark Woods, Packway Handle Band, The Wailin’ Jennys, Thor Platter, Dan Reeder, Langhorne Slim & the Law 

Check out Americana Boogie Radio station!

Posted in Americana CD releases, Americana Music, Bluegrass, Country Music, Country music new releases, New music releases, Roots Music | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Americana Music Releases for the week of Oct. 13th

Here’s all the best Americana and roots-type music releases for October 13th, 2017. Click the artist or album links to find out more. The artist’s names link to their websites and the CD title links go to either Amazon, CD Baby or the artist’s site for ordering or downloading.

Derek Hoke
Bring the Flood  (Little Hollywood Records)

Dark times call for dark songs. At least that’s how East Nashville based singer/songwriter Derek Hoke sees it. On his new album, the portentously titled Bring the Flood, Hoke dives into a sound far more ominous, threatening, and anxiously introspective than the music on his last albums would suggest. Never one to release the same record twice, this album nevertheless marks a substantial shift in Hoke’s approach away from the rootsy, singer/songwriter vein and towards a more edgy, low boil, subtle country infused rock oriented style. “It seemed like a dark cloud coming over America, watching a lot of people hurting, going through hard times, harder than ever.” He lodged those visual images into musical protagonists, flowing melodies and, with Green’s assistance, an overall conceptual world where each track feels connected to the last. That creates an austere, rugged but not stripped down landscape, both hypnotic and earthy in its atmosphere.

Also new this week…

The Barr Brothers – Queens of the Breakers  (Secret City Records)
Joshua Davis – The Way Back Home  (Soundly Music)
Kevin Fisher – Beer Me (37 Records)
Jackie Greene – The Modern Lives Vol. 1  (Blue Rose Music)
Ryan Koenig – Two Different Worlds  (Big Muddy Records)
Lydia Loveless –  Boy Crazy and Single(s)  (Bloodshot Records)
Jeffrey Martin – One Go Around (Fluff & Gravy Records)
Masontown – In This Time  (self released)
Travis Meadows – First Cigarette  (Blaster Records)
Matt Patershuk – Same As I Ever Have Been  (Black Hen Music)

Coming out soon…  Bob Bradshaw, Tyminski, Dori Freeman, Margo Price, Lee Ann Womack, The Deep Dark Woods, Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn, Packway Handle Band, The Wailin’ jennys, Monocle Band, Thor Platter, Dan Reeder 

Check out Americana Boogie Radio station!

 

Posted in Americana CD releases, Americana Music, Bluegrass, Country Music, Country music new releases, New music releases, Roots Music | Tagged | Leave a comment

Americana Music Releases for the week of Oct. 6th

Here’s all the best Americana and roots-type music releases for October 6th, 2017. Click the artist or album links to find out more. The artist’s names link to their websites and the CD title links go to either Amazon, CD Baby or the artist’s site for ordering or downloading.

Gill Landry
Love Rides A Dark Horse
  (ATO Records)

Love and hate need each other for either to have meaning and I feel like it’s the same way with people. I’d like to believe love always wins coming down the stretch – it just might not be the way you envisioned it. That basically is what I wrote this album about. Since making my last record, I destroyed all the pillars of my life intentionally and by accident. I found myself wondering what the hell I was doing, and had to slowly start rebuilding. This is not a blues album, though if someone asked me what kind of music I write, I’d like to say blues. Blues singing is an exorcism of the blues itself, and that’s how I relate to what I write. This album for me is an attempt to shine a light on my various traps and sorrows as well as explore their emotional depths. (from Gill’s bio)

Whitney Rose
Rule 62
(Six Shooter Records)

Whitney Rose named her new record Rule 62. For those not in the know, Rule 62 stands for the aphorism: “don’t take yourself too damn seriously”. That wryly fits the contents of Rose’s material. She sings about extremes. Whether the topic is truck driving or funerals, making the first move or getting divorced, being scared or feeling passionate, Rose delivers the lines straight with a twist. There’s a thin line between telling a compelling, detailed story and being absurd. The key, Rose acknowledges, it to have it both ways. Rose penned nine of the 11 tracks and sings them from the heart, even with a lump in her throat, but with her tongue often in her cheek. This is pure country music, Texas-style, meant for the state’s distinctive dance floors, nightclubs, dive bars, and open-air venues.  (edited from Pop Matters review)

Also new this week…

Bill Carter – Bill Carter  (Forty Below Records)
Laura Cortese & The Dance Cards – California Calling
(Compass Records)
Ren Geisick – Ren, Love Song (independent)
Thomm Jutz – Crazy If You Let It  (Mountain Fever Records)
JD McPherson – Undivided Heart & Soul  (New West Records)
Jim Page – A Hand Full of Songs  (independent)
Silver Torches –  Let It Be a Dream  (independent)
The White Buffalo – Darkest Darks, Lightest Lights  (Unison Music Group)
The Roseline – Blood  (King Forward Records)

Coming out soon… Derek Hoke, Matt Patershuk, Jackie Greene, Joshua Davis, Bob Bradshaw, Ryan Koenig, Masontown, Tyminski, Dori Freeman, Margo Price, Lee Ann Womack, The Deep Dark Woods, Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn, The Wailin’ Jennys, Packway Handle Band, Monocle Band, Thor Platter, Dan Reeder 

Check out Americana Boogie Radio station!

Bill Frater

 

 

 

Posted in Americana CD releases, Americana Music, Bluegrass, Country Music, Country music new releases, Music, New music releases | Tagged , , | Leave a comment