Wednesday, December 9 2009
During the height of his career, Bill Monroe fielded a baseball team that would organize pickup games in each town in order to drum up publicity for that evening's concert.
Wednesday, November 4 2009
In the late '30s and '40s, Bill Monroe and His Blue Grass Boys were the biggest stars in country music, but when he appeared onstage at the 1963 Newport Folk Festival, he did so after a number of years spent toiling in relative obscurity.
Wednesday, October 7 2009
Johnny Cash was a serious scholar of music, and this knowledge was reflected in his own work, which included covers of everyone and everything from Jimmie Rodgers to Nine Inch Nails, oldtime hymns to reggae.
Tuesday, September 8 2009
Need more duets in your life? Loretta Lynn and Ernest Tubb are among country music's best partnerships.
Wednesday, August 19 2009
Country music ain’t the sole purview of the southern part of the northern hemisphere: Canada has its share of fireside soul(ful) singers, too.
Monday, July 6 2009
With her honorary doctorate in hand, here's hoping she'll next broker peace in the Middle East, repair the economy, and explain the twisted plotlines of 'Lost' -- Lord knows, the woman is capable.
Tuesday, May 19 2009
What better way to soothe modern worries than by taking in classic country music with a side of hillbilly humor?
Monday, April 6 2009
Editing the original RCA tapes makes the songs on Naked Willie so much better that I’m remembering the reasons why I fell in love with Willie Nelson so many years ago.
Monday, March 16 2009
The Maddox Brothers and Rose recorded songs that would be considered controversial even today. But 60 years ago, they were incredibly groundbreaking, and paved the way for outspoken female singers like Loretta Lynn.
Monday, February 9 2009
The majority of us aren't coal miners, we don't know coal miners, and we wouldn't last a week in a coal mine. Are coal mining songs, then, still relevant?
Monday, January 12 2009
Steve Martin, Sufjan Stevens, and Kermit the Frog all know it and you should, too: the banjo is hands-down the coolest instrument out there.
Wednesday, November 26 2008
Poverty, crime, disenfranchisement, sinning, saving, and no-account women: Stereotypical subjects of the average country song, or the average hip-hop song?
Tuesday, October 28 2008
They might kick me out of the feminist club for this, but I love murder ballads, even the ones in which women get killed—though, to be fair, I am an equal opportunity advocate when it comes to a good killing narrative.