Last week I talked about the independent country songs that have been certified gold over the last few years. And things aren’t slowing down: since I published that post a week ago, I learned that Keep the Wolves Away by Uncle Lucius has been certified gold. (If hits on a blog post are any guide, I shouldn’t have been surprised.) Even more impressive than the songs certified gold, independent country artists are getting songs certified platinum. Leading the way are Tyler Childers and Cody Jinks. (S.O.B. by Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats was also certified platinum, but I already featured it here and it is really country-adjacent.)Continue reading “Music Monday: Solid Platinum Edition”
He made us wait so long, and we really are not talking enough about Chris Stapleton’s new album. It is easy to take for granted the sheer quality of his admittedly limited output. But the list of artists with four albums in a row that strong is pretty much limited to the Turnpike Troubadours.
I was down in Oklahoma this past weekend. It being my first time there, I was excited to check out some Red Dirt. Checked the local venues, didn’t see much in the way of the regular Red Dirt crowd, but I did see that Chris Knight would be in town. I am always down to see Chris again, even if it is for the seventh time in the fourth different state (once in NC, twice in Virginia, three times in Texas, and now once in Oklahoma).
Our long national nightmare is almost over. Chris Knight has a new album, Almost Daylight, out on Friday. It is hard to believe that it has been seven years since his financial crisis opus, Little Victories, let alone that I have been a Chris Knight fan for over a decade now.
Sturgill Simpson declared months ago that his new album would not be country. The New York Times describes it as “resentful, agonized, seething.” The NYT also describes it as “high-viscosity Southern rock à la ZZ Top, with a potent rhythmic undertow.” Good enough for me.
Out Today: Sound & Fury by Sturgill Simpson.
no-angel’s favorite videos include Baby Shark, The Wheels on the Bus, Farmer in the Dell,…and All Your’n by Tyler Childers. A music video about a man suffering drug-induced hallucinations probably isn’t the best influence on a toddler, but a little good music won’t hurt her and I can use the break.
Since I am foolishly passing up a chance to see him in the near future, it is past time I feature Chris Stapleton again. His album Traveler is still #6 on the country charts. And it was released in 2015. From a Room: Volume 1 is still in the top 40 as well. More than anyone I expect we will lean on him to save country music (although it will have to be an ensemble effort). Now he just needs to get back writing and in the studio.
I’m not quite through singing Tyler Childers’ praises after flagging his new album from Friday. For one, now I’ve had the chance to listen to it several times and can testify how great it is. Two, Country Squire follows up Childers’ great breakthrough album, Purgatory. So today I want to flag a couple songs from that effort (Feathered Indians will have to wait).
I have frequent occasion to shake my head and wonder how it took so damn long to get to one musician or another. A problem exacerbated by an influx of ultra-talented young musicians jostled for a spot next to the old greats. I am discovering great new music faster than I can get Music Monday posts out. Tyler Childers may be the greatest discovery of the last year and a half.
Out today: Country Squire by Tyler Childers.
I am not a music critic. I don’t listen to nearly enough music, and I don’t know enough about music. I mostly approach it as another form of storytelling, and the songs I pick for Mondays here are mostly to complement what I am talking about on Wednesdays. So you won’t get a “Best Albums from the First Half of 2019” post from me.
But there are three albums released so far this year have really caught my attention, and I want to highlight them. Surprisingly, none of the three are Texas country. Unsurprisingly, one of the artists is from Kentucky and another from East Kentucky (otherwise known as West Virginia). It augurs well for the future of indie country that all three are debut full-length albums. The three are Too Mean To Die by Karly Driftwood, Between The Country by Ian Noe, and Seneca by Charles Wesley Godwin.