The Crazy Daysies kick off their summer Swampytonk Experience with a performance on the Riverfront Stage at the Isle of Eight Flags Shrimp Festival on May 5. Instead of a typical tour most musicians do, this series of shows will highlight original music written by Jacksonville-based sisters Rebecca Day and Jennifer Day Thompson. The goal is to spread the word about their unique “swampytonk” sound most closely aligned with Americana music, and to have fun welcoming all those who want to come out and be part of something different.
Robert Earl Keen will soon launch Americana Podcast: The 51st State, and it’s a given the genre will benefit from Keen’s support. Few can clearly define Americana, but many lay claim to it. The new podcast comes at a time when listening to podcasts is becoming more popular. Will this new messaging help clear up confusion about this genre that could be loosely a hybrid of country and rock? Maybe. Then again, it seems to me there’s a wide range when it comes to defining Americana music. The genre can comprise more than a mix of country (or folk) and
Because of technology, we live in an age where, if you’re an artist, you can’t just be talented or hard-working. You also have to know how to work the system. A rapper from Atlanta, 20 year old Lil Nas X, did all of the above, and now he’s the topic of many a conversation in the music industry. How did a rapper get a song to the top of country Billboard before it was removed from country? Was this racist?
Go to a workshop on making money with your music, and you will hear how valuable streaming is. Spotify is supposed to be one of the magic roads indie artists should take. For consumers willing to pay for music, Spotify is a deal. For artists hoping to gain exposure via Spotify, the service can be a frustration. In an interview with Spotify founder Daniel Ek, Stephen J. Dubner (Freakonomics podcast) makes some interesting points. For starters, how much money can a professional musician expect to make in a year?
The Golden City of country music is about to hold a race for mayor, and although it’s an interesting race, national media have given it scant attention. The race follows a major sex scandal revolving around Nashville’s previous mayor. Amid the campaigning, a daily newspaper even noted “honky-tonk” owners in the city have formed a PAC. Seems like all this would be great fodder for national stories considering Nashville’s importance in country music.
In life there are those quirky moments you remember simply because they’re quirky. I was traveling to Fernandina Beach with Rebecca. She was playing tunes with Wes Goode at The Green Turtle. I was doing a bit of work while she drove when I saw the truck. Right in front of us. The back had a slogan: “best coffee on the interstate.” I realized I was drinking the same kind of coffee the truck was advertising.
During a TED talk in 2015, Matt Griffin told the audience he and some of his fellow military veterans bet they could “manufacture stoke.” He’s talking about the same term we use when we say, “I’m stoked!” After serving in war zones and seeing combat up close and personal, Griffin and his fellows turned that stoke into a fashionable item popular in my home state of Florida and in others too—the combat flip flop. I didn’t know about Griffin’s venture until we experienced it personally here at home.
The US Library of Congress selects 25 sound titles each year for special preservation because of their importance to our culture and history. Among the diverse titles selected in 2019 are works by artists like Cindy Lauper, Jay-Z, and Richie Valens. What prompted me to write about this, however, was the induction of Lefty Frizzell, one of the greatest influencers on country music in my lifetime. If you’ve ever heard “Long Black Veil” covered, you can thank Frizzell.
CD Baby is getting a new mom and dad. Downtown Music Holdings is acquiring the group that owns the 21 year old music publisher and online seller. How will this affect indie artists who rely on CD Baby for distribution?
The European Union, a work of art itself in many ways, is addressing what media refer to as “copyright reform.” The consensus on doing this seems to be that the digital age requires such reforms and artists aren’t getting what they deserve for their content. Advocates include Paul McCartney, although it’s hard to accept he hasn’t gotten gobs of money without copyright reform. Web titans like Google and Facebook will be impacted, and so will anyone in the US working on music, blogging, news writing, and in other genres. Why?