Posts Tagged ‘songwriter’

Complicated Songs: James McMurtry’s “Complicated Games” Showcases a Master Storyteller.

Complicated Songs: James McMurtry’s “Complicated Games” Showcases a Master Storyteller.

By Jon Black (photo: Shane McCauley) The world James McMurtry paints through his songs is distinctive: a place of stark isolation, of desperate hope struggling against unbeatable odds and where tragedy and beauty make strange but eternal bedfellows. Little wonder his work has been praised by artists as diverse as John Mellencamp, Jason Isbell and […]

Never Past the Point of Rescue: Hal Ketchum Overcomes Challenges of MS to Release New Album

Never Past the Point of Rescue: Hal Ketchum Overcomes Challenges of MS to Release New Album

By Jon Black (Photos: Pete Lacker) At its heart, county music is about the struggles we face and our efforts to overcome them. Few artists know more about struggle than veteran country musician and songwriter Hal Ketchum. After his diagnosis with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) several years ago, Ketchum went into a self-imposed exile in the […]

Bobby Long’s Wishbone: Album Review

Bobby Long’s Wishbone: Album Review

A Talk with Bobby Long: Part Three It’s not accurate to say Bobby Long reinvents himself with every album, however much evidence the music gives. Instead, I think each EP and LP is a step toward something greater, and Wishbone is no exception. Bobby Long told me he never intended to be labeled a singer-songwriter—that […]

Blackmore’s Night Singer Candice Night Releases Debut Solo Album, “Reflections”

Candice Night, who has been delighting audiences around the world for over 15 years as the vocalist for the Renaissance-themed band Blackmore’s Night, has released her debut solo album, REFLECTIONS. The new CD, comprising original material written by the multi-talented songwriter and instrumentalist, is available from UDR Records, distributed in the U.S. by EMI. Often […]

Daniel Ellsworth and the Great Lakes Bring Joy to Live Music

Daniel Ellsworth and the Great Lakes Bring Joy to Live Music

Sometimes a band comes along that reminds me of the sheer joy live music should bring. That band, most recently, is Daniel Ellsworth and the Great Lakes. I had the great privilege of seeing them last Thursday, November 1, at The Basement’s Communion show. Though they only had time for six amazing songs, the band […]

Album Review: Dreams of the San Joaquin

Album Review: Dreams of the San Joaquin

When I was seventeen, my grandfather drove my sister and me across the country to California as a graduation present. This was the year of my musical awakening—the age when I discovered there was more to the wide world than what played on the Top Forty radio. My parents had raised us with a healthy […]

A Talk with Bobby Long – Part Two

A Talk with Bobby Long – Part Two

I grew up listening to folk music and murder ballads, thanks to my parents. While other kids were glued to Casey Kasem on Sunday afternoons, I nodded along to The Kingston Trio or Joan Baez in the backseat of the car. I probably wasn’t old enough to appreciate Little Boxes, and that’s why I take […]

Spotlight on Anderson East

Spotlight on Anderson East

I’d only met him once, after a show at The Basement on 8th Avenue, where he performed before Sam Bradley and Marcus Foster and completely stole my heart. Any other knowledge I had of his appearance came through professional photographs on his website. Anderson East is magnetic on stage and sultry in pictures, and I […]

A Talk with Bobby Long – Part One

A Talk with Bobby Long – Part One

Bobby Long is one of the most dynamic singer-songwriters of the last five years, and as his world gets bigger, so does his music. He puts everything he has into each song, giving very personal experiences in veiled, metaphorical phrases. Hearing his lyrics or reading his poetry is like having a conversation with the man, […]

Strong Debut from Gabriel Kelley – It Don’t Come Easy

Strong Debut from Gabriel Kelley – It Don’t Come Easy

If moving forward in music is scary—forging new paths, creating new sounds and genres—then looking back must be terrifying. That fear over the path you’ve chosen, even if it’s through previously charted lands, must be crippling. After all, we’ve moved on as listeners into a new age, and we tend to do so every few […]

Gabriel Kelley’s Debut Album ‘IT DON’T COME EASY’ Set for Release on July 10th from Nashville’s Badge Music Group

Gabriel Kelley’s Debut Album ‘IT DON’T COME EASY’ Set for Release on July 10th from Nashville’s Badge Music Group

Kelley Will Open for Roger Clyne & The Peacemakers Through June IT DON’T COME EASY, the debut album by Nashville-based singer-songwriter Gabriel Kelley, will be released on July 10 from Badge Music Group. The 10-song collection was produced, engineered and mixed by Grammy®-award-winner Neal Cappellino and features a stellar group of musicians backing up Kelley’s […]

Aaron Shanley Set to Release Album “Please Tell Me the Clocks Are Lying” through American Cadence Records

Aaron Shanley Set to Release Album “Please Tell Me the Clocks Are Lying” through American Cadence Records

Aaron Shanley, award-winning singer/songwriter of Northern Ireland, will release his first full-length album June 5 with American Cadence Records and later this summer with Love Gum Records in the United Kingdom. Shanley, the recipient of the 2010 Katherine Brick Young Songwriter of the Year and 2010 “Best Male Award” for the Access to Music Awards, […]

Stacey Randol: A Strong Voice for Female Singer/Songwriters

Stacey Randol: A Strong Voice for Female Singer/Songwriters

It’s a sad fact, but there seems to be shortage of female singer/songwriters in the world. Of course, with the likes of Ingrid Michaelson, Sarah Bareilles, and Regina Spektor earning accolades, many might argue that women have a huge place in the music scene, and these women are strong writers, singers, and performers who deserve […]

The New Standard by Which All Other Albums Will Be Judged – Maple Ridge by Swear and Shake

The New Standard by Which All Other Albums Will Be Judged – Maple Ridge by Swear and Shake

I’d heard a few sneak peek tracks of Maple Ridge and knew that something special was coming. With the release of These White Walls, the first single from the record, I could already tell that Swear and Shake had upped their game considerably. I thought I was adequately prepared for the remaining songs, but I […]