Sammy Sadler’s story, one he is recounting firsthand in a new book, is one of those cautionary tales about life in the corporate music fast lane. Sadler, a breakout country artist in the late 1980s, had every reason to expect success in his industry. His voice commanded a wide range and his voice had something lacking in so many–character and uniqueness. He had the looks, and his songs were charting nicely. Then came the night when he and his friend Kevin Hughes were leaving Sadler’s record label offices. A gunman emerged from the shadows, killing Hughes and seriously wounding Sadler.
I became a fan of Jenn Bostic by accident. I was reading Tweets one day and came across a post by a website named Belles and Gals. Belles and Gals is a UK-based country website. Bostic has a fan base in the UK—for her bluesy country music. If you listen to her, you may, as I have, be wondering why her music isn’t playing widely on radio stations across the US. You may also be wondering why she doesn’t get more media attention. Fact is the UK has one-upped the US when it comes to her music and others’ as
If fans agreed on one gripe about Episode 3 of Game of Thrones, it was the darkness. The Battle of Winterfell was awesome. Unfortunately, many of us had trouble seeing what was going on because of the way the episode was filmed. The screen was so dark it was hard to tell who was who and to see the faces of the White Walkers and wights. That’s one reason I wasn’t alone in missing one of my favorite musicians, a superstar, in the episode. This star isn’t the first to be featured in a cameo on the series.
I remember the series ‘24’ with fondness. It was a hit in my family, and we’d always watch with a great amount of humor thrown in by my witty husband. My husband could always tell when Sutherland as Jack Bauer was about to eliminate a foe permanently. When it was time to watch, my husband would go, “So who’s Jack gonna shoot tonight?” Sutherland has evolved, though. Now he has a band and he does lead vocals on his self-penned songs, many of them biographical. Who knew?
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
I wrote about the dustup over the song “Old Town Road” as debate about the song’s “country-worthiness” took place on social media. I remain perplexed about why country music gatekeepers would deem the song not country when it is, in fact, as country as anything I hear on radio stations or anything I see on the TV channel that airs country videos. In fact, Lil Nas X the rapper has produced a song that’s more country than most of what I hear these days.
I first met Nancy Wilson Buckler through my daughters’ music. Nancy lives in Jacksonville (FL), and I know her son and daughter-in-law and their children. Some time ago my own daughters told me they’d had a great time listening to Nancy play the guitar and sing. They said she had a fantastic voice. A new CD Nancy produced is a testament to that voice, and one song in particular touched me in a way that few songs do. Nancy has no idea I am writing this. And she has no idea about something in my past that figured heavily in
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?
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.
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.