Sheryl Crow "Feels Like Home" (Warner Bros)
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Sunday 08 March 2009
Taylor Swift, a lion-haired, God-thanking teenager from Pennsylvania, is currently the hottest thing in the US since sliced Obama, and Universal is shifting as many copies of Fearless as possible before she does a Britney.
Sunday 01 March 2009
Ah, good old-fashioned country music. Well, good old-fashioned country music as played by someone who spent her twenties in "a sludgy, noisy, instrumental math-metal band called Last of the Juanitas". Miss Lana Rebel is a native of Portland, Oregan, who writes and sings whisky-soaked country songs guaranteed to put tears in your beers. Too left-field for the Nashville mainstream, 'All I Need' is one for those who can tell their Neko Case from their Mary Gaulthier.
Monday 26 January 2009
Avirtuoso mandolin player, Butch Baldassari effortlessly straddled musical genres.
Saturday 13 December 2008
Though her modelling career only spanned seven years in the Fifties, the American pin-up Bettie Page fuelled many a fantasy and helped usher in the sexual revolution of the Sixties.
Thursday 06 November 2008
Lambchop once played so quietly at London's Somerset House that you could hear the birds in the trees above them.
Tuesday 28 October 2008
A plot by far-right extremists to assassinate Barack Obama and kill and decapitate dozens of other black Americans at a school has been broken up, US officials claimed yesterday.
Friday 26 September 2008
Charlie Walker was a honky-tonk musician and disc jockey best known for his classic recording of "Pick Me Up On Your Way Down". Written by the great Harlan Howard, the song, with its insistent shuffle rhythm, was a Top Five country hit in 1958.
Friday 19 September 2008
A highly influential steel guitarist, Don Helms was best known for his membership of Hank Williams' band The Drifting Cowboys. His distinctive style, with its blues inflections and characteristic use of the upper octaves, featured on over a hundred of the singer's classic sides, including "Cold, Cold Heart" (1950), "I Can't Help It (If I'm Still in Love With You)" (1951) and "Your Cheatin' Heart" (1952).
Monday 08 September 2008
Saturday 19 July 2008
The home I grew up in... was a beautiful, very middle-class American colonial house. It was set over six acres of land and there was an apple orchard out the back. My dad got me selling the apples to our neighbours at an early age.
Tuesday 08 July 2008
Nicole Kidman gave birth on a Monday to a baby girl named Sunday.
Friday 13 June 2008
The King of Rock and Soul's last album Nashville didn't, as far as I recall, get a UK release, but Like a Fire continues its clear country orientation with a satisfying set of country-soul performances, ranging from the almost swamp-funk gospel of Ben Harper's "A Minute to Rest and a Second to Pray" at one extreme to "If I Give My Heart to You", a torch-song in the pioneering black-country tradition established by Ray Charles, at the other.
Sunday 08 June 2008
Emmylou's Daniel Lanois period is over. She's back in Nashville with Brian Ahern on the other side of the thickened glass, which means that an elegantly chiming country-rock sound replaces the arty false perspectives and cultivated grit of the Lanois vibe.
Friday 06 June 2008
The first album on her own label has apparently secured Dolly Parton her first Top 20 placing since 1993 – and no wonder, given its combination of technical accomplishment and sheer likeability.
Friday 09 May 2008
Eddy Arnold was arguably the most successful country singer of the 20th century. He sold an estimated 85 million records and enjoyed more than 140 US hits, 28 of them chart-toppers. He cut his first single for RCA Victor in 1944 and was still very much a presence on the country scene in the 1990s, having made a guest appearance on the teen sensation LeAnn Rimes' award-winning album Blue in 1996.
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