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Libby Koch to Release New Album, Redemption 10 in October

 

Libby Koch : Redemption 10 : Live At Blue Rock
Release Date : October 18th
Americana, Country, Folk
www.LibbyKoch.com 
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Hear “Just The Way” on Americana Highways

 

“In an era of widespread vocal sweetness, Libby Koch has that rare blend of powerful real-life honesty in her vocals that lends instant depth and credibility to her songs.”
– Melissa Clarke, Americana Highways

“Her music makes you want to persevere on the off chance that the new morning might yield an unexpected creation. Such moments may be fleeting, but there are none as rewarding.”
– No Depression

“Koch plays country the way it is meant to be played, with emotion, musicianship, and earthy, clever songwriting.”
– That Music Mag

To celebrate the tenth anniversary of her first album, Redemption, Americana singer-songwriter Libby Koch is releasing a full band, track-for-track reimagining of the original solo acoustic recording. Redemption 10: Live at Blue Rock will be released by Berkalin Records on October 18, 2019.

The format of this record was an experiment for Koch. Recording her 2016 album Just Move On on Music Row in Nashville hooked Libby on the energy of making a record with a band playing the songs together, recording live in the studio. She wondered what it might be like to add a live studio audience to the equation – to let fans be part of the experience as well. Koch found the perfect location for this endeavor at Blue Rock Artist Ranch and Studio in Wimberley, Texas. Blue Rock is a state of the art studio and performance space in the Texas Hill Country that has the capability to film and broadcast live performances while providing an intimate experience for the audience and capturing pristine audio of the performance.

With the location set, Libby enlisted her friend Patterson Barrett (Buddy Miller, Jerry Jeff Walker, Nanci Griffith) to co-produce the project and assemble an all-star band of Austin musicians to record Redemption 10 in front of a live studio audience at Blue Rock. Tickets quickly sold out. Libby and the band played the album straight through once and then played a second take of a couple of songs, but in the end they decided that the flow and the feeling of the first takes were the ones that needed to be on the record. It was a magical evening.

While not a traditional live album, the atmosphere and the feedback from the crowd absolutely fed the band and shaped the experience that was caught on tape. Koch and her band sound relaxed and in an energized zone that only a live setting can provide, but at the same time they have the tight knit sound of an experienced studio band. In the end the experiment was a resounding success. The record shows a Libby Koch that her fans have loved for a decade now and presented these tracks in a fuller more realized way. If Redemption 10 is your introduction to Koch, you are in for major musical treat.

The band of Austin all-stars included lead guitarist Bill Browder (Denim, Steve Fromholz), drummer Eddie Cantu (Bruce Robison, Maren Morris), violinist Javier Chaparro (Austin Symphony, John Denver), and Glenn Schuetz (Jimmy LaFave). Libby played acoustic guitar, harmonica, and sang lead vocals, while Patterson Barrett rounded out the sound of the record by providing pedal steel, piano, organ, mandolin, and harmony vocals.

When asked about the inspiration behind the project Koch says:

“Ten years ago, when I recorded Redemption, I was a young attorney at a big law firm in Houston. At the time, I thought this was probably the only record I would ever make, and I certainly didn’t anticipate I would ever have a career in music. Once I self-released the album and started playing shows and selling copies of the CD in Houston, one thing led to another, and before I knew it, I was building a career in music! Ten years later, I’ve put out a few more records (Redemption 10 will be the sixth), and I’ve played hundreds of shows across the US and Europe. It’s been an incredible adventure, and I’m most thankful for all the great friendships I’ve made with musicians and music lovers across the globe. Revisiting my first album feels like a fun and fitting celebration of the music and memories I’ve made over the past decade.”

 

Songs:

1. Houston: I wrote this song the day after I graduated from law school in Nashville. The movers had come and gone, and the house was empty. I was leaving for my new job and new life in Houston the following morning, but before I left, this song had to be written. At the time, I thought I was saying goodbye to a guy, but upon reflection I now see that I was closing one chapter and starting another.

2. Just the Way: This song is about the somewhat cyclical nature of “dating” (I don’t think the kids call it that anymore). It was written in a time when I was perpetually single and not particularly good at keeping it casual! This has been one of the most fun songs from Redemption to revamp and play live, both for the band and the folks on the dance floor.

3. Can’t Complain: Writing this song was an attempt to gain a little perspective after a breakup and remind myself that, at the end of the day, I was going to be okay. In true Texas style, I was raised to dust myself off and get back on the horse after you fall out of the saddle, and this song is part of that tradition.

4. Stay With Me: I wrote this song in law school. When I played it for my roommate, she said “oh my god, that’s the saddest song I’ve ever heard.” Little did she know, I was just getting started!

5. Redemption: One of the most interesting elements of this project has been revisiting the songs to see if they’ve changed, I’ve changed, or both! This is one of the songs that has grown in meaning and depth for me, as it was written for someone who I now know never really loved me back. Now I sing it for someone who really deserves these words.

6. How Long: This record definitely intertwines spiritual themes into love songs…How Long is a great example of that. I based this song on the text of Psalm 40, with lines of each verse and the chorus tracking the Psalm: “I waited patiently for the Lord, and he turned to me and heard my cry. He brought me up out of a slimy pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and gave me a firm place to stand”

7. Down: This is probably the song that changed the most from the original version. I always heard this song in my head as a honky tonk number, but Patterson said “what if we make it a rocker?” Once the band kicked into gear on this groove it was clear that it was meant to be. We had THE most fun with this song!

8. Don’t Give Up On Me: This is a spiritual song that I wrote in high school. I got my start playing guitar in my church’s youth group and the Young Life band, so a lot of my early songs were written from a spiritual angle. At such a young age it was easier for me to write those spiritual songs than it was to write something personal about someone else…I was so afraid people would figure out the songs were about them!

9. Ready Now: This is another song I wrote when I was young that started out as a spiritual song, but ended up being a love song. It’s also one of the songs that has changed for me in the past decade since I recorded the original version. Now I see this song as a readiness to dive in headfirst to life and love to see what happens (spoiler: good things usually happen when you do that).

10. I Still Miss Someone: I decided to close the album with one of my favorite Johnny Cash songs, I Still Miss Someone. The original Redemption version was just me, my harmonica, and my guitar…a really intimate version of the song. This live version ended up being a little more lively and faster than we anticipated, but I think we were all having such a great time and in a nice groove that it turned out the way it did. I love both versions and am so happy with how this entire project turned out.

 

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Browngrass Band “Sour Bridges” getting lot of praise for their album “Neon Headed Fool” .

Yesterday I started our affiliate web site “Song of the Day” with the song “Do Ya” from the Austin fella’s album “Neon Headed Fools”. After listening to the rest of the album and not having replaced our ex-expensive reviewer it’s down to me to cobble one together.

 

First impression left me with the Austin Chronicle headline “Texas Trampled by Turtles” and I will probably regret writing that. The band describe their foot-tapping,finger-clicking and head-bobbing music “browngrass, dirtier than Bluegrass”, 10 out of ten for the catchphrase fellas.

 

With Swiss yodeling, East European influences, Tejano accordion and fiddles fiddling it sure is different Bluegrass but in an inventive, wanting more way. It’s fun and funny, light heartening funny, Fred Eaglesmith funny, you know what I mean and if you don’t go get a copy and dance round kitchen while making breakfast, guaranteed good day to follow.

No filler songs gets Sour Bridge another 10 out of ten. Left-handed banjo’s another 10, Pucci, punchy lyrics yet another 10. In fact 10 out of 10’s all round so I have to knock the artwork as not being up to the standards of the rest of the production.

What amazes me is  that the band has passed me by for the last 9 years, must get their back catalog, maybe if they read this they will send me .WAV files of them, doubt it, the reading not the sending.

It is difficult to give an album 10 out of ten, in fact there are very few out there and they have reached 10  after years of listening, so thanks to the cover work Neon Headed Fool gets a NINE out of Ten, (95%), one in a million rating here at TMEfm radio.

 

 

Thanks boys for the snap shot from your web site which is used as a clicky thing to take you there.

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Texas singer songwriter, Chad Richard’s second album, Worthy Cause. Worthy Cause, produced by Walt Wilkins, will officially release on April 26th

 

Wow that photo is BIG.

Anyway I spend a lot of time reading reviews and looking for “new artists” and I read a couple of excellent ones and listened to “12 More Days Of Blue”

 I thought I should reach out to Chad and get a copy of the album to play on TME.fm as it is going to be good. Lets see it climb the RMR charts and enjoy the music at the same time.

Chad told his PR man and I received a copy immediately, also Adam the man has more artists who are top notch and we will be mentioning those another day. Adam the man actually remembers dickthespic, small world.

 

www.ChadRichardSongs.com
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“Worthy Cause is an album full of honest truths in styles that range from country to zydeco in blended forms, and this song is at the heart of it.” – Melissa Clarke

Chad Richard (pronounced REE-shard) is a native of the Sabine River bottom, where the river merges Louisiana with Texas’ soil as it winds along. Steeped in the mingling influences of the region, Richard’s songwriting and musical sensibilities fuse Cajun, Texas swing, country and blues styles into an effortlessly born offspring of each side of the river.

Richard writes songs from the heart. Like so many of us, he has loved, laughed, experienced fatherhood, suffered break-up, sorrow, and divorce, and loved again. The experiences of trying to do all the right things as single Dad shaped his songwriting in unique ways, as much as the musical influences surrounding him did. Holding it all together by day, working in a chemical plant, he’d still play solo gigs at night. When Walt Wilkins happened upon Richard at one of these gigs in 2012, Wilkins invited Richard to sit in Wilkins’ band, at about the same time Todd Purifoy (producer and photographer for the Texas Music Scene) approached him about making a record. Forces aligned, connections solidified and before long Walt was producing Richard’s successful debut album: Veteran’s Grocery (2015).

His second release, Worthy Cause (2019), was recorded at Jumping Dog Studio in Austin, Texas. Again Richard turned to Walt Wilkins (Sam Baker, Jason Eady, Susan Gibson) for production and the album was engineered by Ron Flynt. In addition to Richard’s songwriting, acoustic guitar and vocals, other musicians contributing to the album include Wilkins and Flynt, Marian Brackney on fiddle, Chip Dolan (The Band of Heathens, Greg Trooper) on pianos and organs, Geoff Queen (Kelly Willis, Jason Boland & the Stragglers) on steel guitar, and Corby Schaub (Ryan Bingham) on lap steel. The rhythm section is Ray Rodriguez on drums and Bill Small on bass.

Worthy Cause is an album with songs characterized by stories as only Richard can tell them. “Slow Rollin’ Stateline” spins a tale of growing up on the Texas/LA border with “Zydeco to the east, Texas swing to the west,” as the song bears the musical marks of those influences. “German Angel” recounts a story of a couple living in a historic German house in the Texas Hill country, where the wife believes a ghost resides to watch over the manor, as told from the ghost’s perspective. “Worthy Cause” highlights Richard’s riveting vocals over hushed acoustic guitar and pedal steel, with an imperfect man’s tribute of gratitude towards the good, faithful woman who loves him. “Waters Rise” was inspired by Richard’s first hand experience of the kindness and humanity that shone through the floodwaters in the wake of hurricane Harvey – “waters rise, but people rise above.” “12 More Days of Blue” narrates the poignant tribulations of a loving, single Dad as he masks adult pain in order to experience the best with his child. The entire record showcases Richard’s striking ability to commandeer attention with his powerful vocal presence and compelling direct narrative style.

“I got my first real paying job when I was 11 years old. The man I went to work for gave me some advice. He said “Don’t ever turn something you love into your job! When you do you’ll soon lose the love for it!” I always remembered that and always kept music as a part time escape from my less than favorite job for fear of losing the love for it. Now with 30 years in a chemical plant and only 2 years left till I retire from this less than favorite job, I’m beginning to wonder if just maybe, there’s a possibility, that perhaps, he may have been full of shit!” – Chad Richard

“Chad doesn’t ever have to insist on himself – His completely unique Louisiana-Texas-Soul-Country voice grabs the listener, and in just a few minutes, everyone who hears him likes him,” – Walt Wilkins, Texas Songwriting Legend, Producer

Chad Richard – Worthy Cause (2019)
1. Slow Rollin State Line 4:03
2. Love Anyway 2:54
3. German Angel 3:41
4. Right Now 3:26
5. Worthy Cause 5:43
6. Fredericksburg 3:08
7. Waters Rise 3:28
8. The Big and The Little Hand 4:25
9. My Name 3:04
10. 12 More Days of Blue 3:49
11. Shawdy and a Shiner 3:01
12. The game 3:50
All Songs FCC Clean
Focus Tracks: 2, 3, 7, 10

All songs Written By Chad Richard, Barn Noise Publishing (BMI)
RECORDING & PRODUCTION CREDITS:
Produced by Walt Wilkins & Ron Flynt
Recorded at Jumping Dog Studio, Austin, Tx.
Mastered by Jerry Tubb at Terra Nova Mastering, Austin, Tx
Chad Richard-Vocals & Acoustic Guitar
Walt Wilkins- Acoustic & Electric Guitars & Percussion
Ray Rodriguez- Drums & Percussion
Bill small- Bass
Corby Schaub-Lap Steel Guitar
Chip Dolan- Piano, Wurlitzer Piano, & B3 organ
Marian Brackney- Fiddle/Violin & Viola
Geoff Queen- Steel Guitar & Dobro
Ron Flynt- Bass, “Waters Rise” & “Shawdy and a Shiner”
Piano, “Waters Rise” & “Worthy Cause”
Wurlitzer Piano, “My Name”
B3 organ, “12 More Days of Blue” & “Waters Rise”
Matt Giles- Electric Guitar, “Slow Rollin State Line”
Kurt Baumer- Fiddle, “Fredericksburg”
Harmonies- Walt Wilkins & Tina Mitchell Wilkins
Artwork- Julie Sckittone
Photography- Cory Hoover Photography

 

Copyright © 2019 Broken Jukebox Media, All rights reserved  

oops didn’t see that, never mind we are a “pirate radio”.

Corey Nolen & Ashley Spurling – Not All Roses

 

 

A harmony-driven duet that trades thought-provoking lyrics rooted in southern styles, but with enough pop/rock sensibilities to keep the listener from fully nailing down its musical genre.

“Not All Roses” is the fifth recording released by Corey Nolen in the past five years. Though he is not a typical touring artist, Corey is a prolific writer and consistently brings new music to the stage and studio. He is best known for his songwriting, which draws from his keen attention to the details of life and his ability to capture truths shared by almost all of his listeners. In the winter of 2017 Corey was named a semi-finalist in the International Songwriting Competition and in the spring of 2015 he was awarded first place in the statewide, “Make Music Alabama” songwriting competition. With this album, Corey Nolen further establishes himself as a compelling storyteller with a knack for bringing those stories to life by engaging skillful musicians who help him communicate his stories through well-produced, honest songs.

Eli Fox – Tall Tales

Throughout musical history, those of a tender age have often shown a prolific prowess that outpaces their level of growth and maturity. The examples are evident — Michael Jackson, Sarah Jarosz, Stevie Wonder and Sara & Sean Watkins are among the more obvious examples of musicians who made their mark early on, at an age where many of us are just learning how to tie our shoelaces.
East Tennessee’s Eli Fox is the latest artist to show that remarkable proficiency; at age 18, he’s setting his sites on college and, equally importantly, boasting his full length musical debut, the ironically dubbed Tall Tales. The follow up to an initial EP that came out last year, it finds Fox taking his cue from traditional Americana…

…and, most strikingly, the wit and rapport of early Bob Dylan. That’s particularly true of a song like “Hillbilly” where he states his case and shares his rural roots. The easy amble of “Fine Toothed Comb,“ the aw-shucks sentiment of “Tell Me Why” and the rapid fire delivery that accompanies “What Can I Do” more than affirm his down home demeanor, a dry yet demonstrative sound underscored by his rural regimen and an unassuming singing style that sounds as if it just rolled out of the far hills of Appalachia. He shares an obvious admiration for Woody Guthrie, but his instrumental ability — he plays guitar, banjo, fiddle, piano and harmonica with equal ease — only enhances his reverence for the roots. Indeed, really has a rookie been so quick to establish his credence and creativity.

Chris Thile – Thanks for Listening

Released a little over a year after Chris Thile took over as host of the public radio variety show A Prairie Home Companion, Thanks for Listening collects ten Song of the Week features from his inaugural season. Each song was an original written for that week and premiered live on the show. Finding a common theme among personal, societal, and political topics in some of the songs — namely, the art of listening — Thile headed to the studio with producer Thomas Bartlett to record selections for a cohesive album. On these versions, the mandolin virtuoso covers stringed instruments except bass and viola, and sings lead, though he’s joined on some songs by guest vocalists Sarah Jarosz, Aoife O’Donovan, and Gaby Moreno, all Prairie alumnae under Thile.

One of the album’s flashier mandolin performances can be found on the spare “Balboa,” whose multicultural wanderlust receives intricate and nuanced accompaniment. By and large, though, Thanks for Listening puts a premium on songs over chops, not that there’s any lack of instrumental proficiency here. An atmospheric track like “Feedback Loop,” for instance, uses a slow tempo, keyboards, and echo along with acoustic instruments. After setting an intentionally lethargic tone, lyrics get at our ability to filter unwelcome opinions on social media and elsewhere (“Feedback Loop, I play you to soothe my closed eyes/Closed mind/Open wounds/Open hate for anyone out of the Feedback Loop”). Later, the poppier “Falsetto” grapples with the constant derision, real and imagined, from a post-election Donald Trump, including what he might have to say about an activist musician. Other songs address fatherhood, family gatherings, and friendship in the context of the time’s technology and politics.

Despite its more collaborative origins, Thanks for Listening plays like a singer/songwriter album from Thile, one with moments of humor, poignancy, dread, and playfulness. Particularly “for anyone trying to hear through the din of a boorish year,” it captures the Zeitgeist of the first half of 2017 with a very human touch.

May Erlewine – Mother Lion

“Her songs show a very real connection and concern with everyday folk.” Lifted from the first paragraph of May Erlewine’s Facebook biography, this is the singular, wholesome truth that sits at the center of the Michigan artist’s entire portfolio. Her music has a heart that connects with others’ hearts. It’s one that has been continuously conscious of the human condition and how it reacts to the ebb and flow of our everchanging world. She’s given a voice to everyday folk in artistically recognizing her place on our planet Earth as one, and we are all elevated together for it.

Her name might be recognized internationally, but any Michigander will tell you that she’s at the top rung of artists that they pride themselves in calling one of their home-state girls. Her latest record, Mother Lion, is reflective in this in the staff she’s brought on to help bring it to life. Members of Ann Arbor outlet Vulfpeck comprise her band (drummer Theo Katzman, bassist Joe Dart, and pianist Woody Goss) while acclaimed producer Tyler Duncan (Michelle Chamuel, Ella Riot) helps bring it all together.

The ending, everlasting result is a refreshingly vibrant addition to Erlewine’s discography. She’s always had an innate knack for speaking to the masses in any way they see fit to process it. Yet, as her relatable voice melds with crisp, modern, and eclectic production, we’ve come to a place where we realize that the artist is still coming up with ways to surprise us while touching our hearts even 10 solo albums in. Utterly empathetic and chockful of heart-tugging imagery, Mother Lion is an empowering hand to guide you headfirst in a bold new direction as much as it is a warm embrace to cry into and be told everything is going to be okay whenever the world gets you down.

Chris Stapleton – From A Room Volume 2

Eight months after releasing the best-selling country album of the year, Chris Stapleton is back with a companion piece. From A Room: Volume 2 arrives December 1st, delivering another batch of songs culled from Stapleton’s Library of Congress-sized back catalog. It’s lean and live-sounding, with hands-off production by Dave Cobb – who captures each song with minimal knob-twiddling, shining some honest light on a working band that’s logged countless stage hours since Traveller‘s 2015 release – and plenty of guitar solos from the industry’s most unsung instrumentalist. Stapleton’s voice remains as titanic ever, but on these nine tracks, he packs an equally sized punch as both picker and bandleader. Volume 2 isn’t just about songs in RCA Studio A (the “room” in the title); it’s about the people occupying that studio too, and Stapleton keeps fine company throughout.

1. “Millionaire” (Kevin Welch)
Originally recorded by Kevin Welch, “Millionaire” gets a swinging, Heartbreakers-worthy update by Stapleton and company, who turn the tune into a soulful blast of heartland rock. The song’s secret weapon: Morgane Stapleton, whose harmonies trace her husband’s melodies at every twist and turn.

2. “Hard Livin'” (Chris Stapleton, Kendell Marvel)
Stapleton summons the ghost of Waylon Jennings with this song’s phase-shifted guitar riff, renewing his outlaw stripes along the way. Before the final solo, he lets a loud, lawless “Wooo!” escape from his throat, proof that recording “Hard Livin'” was easier than its title suggests. File this stomping Southern rocker alongside Traveller‘s “Nobody to Blame.”

With a Celtic-sounding verse and a haunting, minor-key chorus, “Scarecrow in the Garden” is the album’s first non-anthem, trading the bombast of the first two tracks for something more reminiscent of an old-school murder ballad. During the song’s final moments, Stapleton paints a gripping picture of a farmer at the end of his rope. “I was sitting here all night / With a Bible in my left hand and a pistol in my right,” he sings.

4. “Nobody’s Lonely Tonight” (Stapleton, Mike Henderson)
Written with ex-SteelDriver Mike Henderson, this low-and-slow soul ballad borrows some of its movements from the Great American Songbook, sounding like something Cole Porter might’ve written after too many drunken nights in the Delta.

5. “Tryin’ to Untangle My Mind” (Stapleton, Jaren Boyer, Marvel)
“I’m lonesome and stoned, so far down the Devil’s looking high,” Stapleton sings, embodying one of his most familiar characters: the tortured, heartbroken protagonist who’s looking for relief in all the wrong places. Behind him, the band kicks up plenty of bluesy dust.

6. “A Simple Song” (Stapleton, Darrell Hayes)
The title says it all. Unhurried and unplugged, “A Simple Song” sketches its storyline in broad strokes. There’s a factory worker, a broken family and a romance that’s keeping the narrator afloat. Like “Drunkard’s Prayer,” it’s one of the most intimate songs on the album, reminiscent of older tunes like “Whiskey and You.”

7. “Midnight Train to Memphis” (Stapleton, Henderson)
A booming, burly rocker, “Midnight Train to Memphis” finds Stapleton in jail, serving a 40-day sentence while a distant train wails its horn outside the prison walls. The whole riff is built upon a monster guitar riff, injecting venom and vitriol into Volume 2‘s final stretch.

8. “Drunkard’s Prayer” (Stapleton, Jameson Clark)
“I hate the fact it takes a bottle to get me on my knees,” Stapleton bellows, playing the part of a broken, boozy man who hopes God will be more forgiving of his sins than the woman who recently left him. The guitar pattern echoes Willie Nelson’s reading of “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain,” and like that song, “Drunkard’s Prayer” is delivered entirely alone, a move that drives home the song’s lonely message.

9. “Friendship” (Homer Banks, Lester Snell)
Bookending the album with another cover tune, “Friendship” finds Stapleton singing a forgotten country-soul number from the Stax archives. The Staples Singers’ patriarch, Pops Staples, recorded the song shortly before his death, and Stapleton’s version updates the original with deeper groves and gorgeous guitar tremolo.

Dale Ann Bradley – Dale Ann Bradley

3x IBMA Female Vocalist of the Year and daughter of bluegrass Dale Ann Bradley celebrates her musical heritage with new original tracks, a classic rock cover and a timeless tribute to Bill Monroe.

“I grew up in a tar and paper covered shack right near Loretta Lynn’s childhood home,” reflects Dale Ann Bradley on her rustic origin in the hills of east Kentucky as a hardscrabble preacher’s daughter. ”It was very different. It was not easy,” she says. And even as a girl, she knew she wanted more. With Somewhere South of Crazy (available August 30th), this three-time IBMA Female Vocalist of the Year shares what has shaped her life and music, by going deeper—deeper into bluegrass, deeper into her own musical passions, deeper into her own history as a veteran entertainer who spent years singing country music alongside her ‘grass at Kentucky’s venerable Renfro Valley.

The result is a set that ranges from first-generation bluegrass classics through long-cherished favorites to brand new songs from Bradley and her friends—but always, always with her incomparably rich voice and east Kentucky sensibilities right at the center.

The title track provided Bradley with some especially enjoyable moments.  “We had the best time writing,” she says of writing—and singing—partner Pam Tillis.  “I just love her.  We sat down, and she had that title line and the idea, and I came up with the melody and some lines—we had worked on a few different things, but this was the one that we finished, and as soon as we did, I knew it was going to be the title track.” Bill Monroe’s “In Despair” may be more unexpected.  “I didn’t plan it as a tribute,” Bradley says with a laugh.  “But I hope people will think of it as one.  I just wanted to showcase a more traditional side of what I do.  But I’m glad it’s coming out on his 100th birthday!” The track “Come Home Good Boy” was more intentional and especially poignant, lending itself to Bradley’s first memory of a funeral, when, at age five, a neighbor boy who served with her uncle in Vietnam returned home in a casket.

A smartly selected crew of singers and players frame Bradley’s tender yet muscular singing to perfection. A couple of her regular bandmembers—harmony singer Kim Fox and banjo man Mike Sumner—make appearances, and so do supple, inventive musicians like the Infamous Stringdusters’ Andy Hall, ace studio fiddler Stuart Duncan, bass stalwart Mike Bub, producer Alison Brown (who doubles on guitar and banjo) and, perhaps most surprisingly yet appropriately, young mandolin phenomena Sierra Hull.  All those elements come together in the partnership here with singer, guitarist, songwriter and friend Steve Gulley.  “We grew up together,” Bradley notes. “Steve and me—we each know what the other one’s going to do.”   Yet as strong as the supporting cast is, the focus is, as always, on Dale Ann and the songs she’s chosen—and as always, they’re a deliciously varied bunch.

To a listener unfamiliar with her unique ability to pull songs from the rock vaults and make them her own, Seals & Crofts’ ‘Summer Breeze,’ will undoubtedly be the biggest surprise, but Bradley sees it as a natural.  “I’ve always wanted to do that song,” she says.  “I don’t pick out a rock tune just for the sake of having one—it has to be one that I always grew up with, or one that I hear that strikes me as fitting into the mix.  Sometimes a melody or lyric will just have that feel, just lend itself to the banjo or something like that—like this one, it almost sounds Celtic to me.”

Some songs, like “I Pressed Through The Crowd” and “Will You Visit Me On Sundays,” have been in Bradley’s repertoire for years, yet were never recorded until now.  “I was so tickled when Alison gave the o.k. to ‘Sundays,’” she notes, “because it brings back the traditional country that Steve and I have been singing together for a long, long time.  And of course, ‘I Pressed Through The Crowd’—I’ve been doing that one for a long time, and it just keeps getting more and more meaningful to me.”  Others are more recent.  ‘Leaving Kentucky’ was, ironically enough, started in Nashville, but finished after Bradley moved back to Kentucky.

Artist Biography by Erik Hage

Bluegrass/Americana artist Dale Ann Bradley, who has released albums both as a solo artist and with the New Coon Creek Girls, is known for her distinctive, gentle vocal phrasing and covers of popular (yet non-genre-related) songs by artists such as U2, Gordon Lightfoot, Jim Croce, and Stealers Wheel.

The L&N Don't Stop Here Anymore

She grew up in southeastern Kentucky and has lived in the Bluegrass State for most of her life; her father was a coal miner and Baptist minister. Bradley auditioned unsuccessfully for the New Coon Creek Girls in 1988 and then spent the next couple of years working as a solo artist in Renfro Valley. She finally joined New Coon Creek in 1991 and performed on the group’s 1994 Pinecastle Records debut, The L&N Don’t Stop Here Anymore. Bradley‘s first solo album, East Kentucky Morning, came out in 1997 and largely consisted of compositions by Dale Ann Bradley and New Coon Creek ally Vicki Simmons. The project also featured a celebrated take on U2‘s “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For,” which helped the album go Top Ten on both the Gavin Americana and Bluegrass Unlimited charts and earn high critical praise.

Old Southern Porches

When the final New Coon Creek Girls album appeared in 1998, “featuring Dale Ann Bradley” was added to the group’s name. Shortly after, the outfit would become Dale Ann Bradley & Coon Creek. Bradley‘s sophomore release, 1999’s Old Southern Porches, featured a cover of Stealers Wheel‘s 1973 hit “Stuck in the Middle with You.” Members of Coon Creek, who by this time featured male players, performed on the album. Bradley put out the solo effort Songs of Praise and Glory in 2001; that same year, signing to Doobie Shea Records, Dale Ann Bradley & Coon Creekreleased Cumberland River Dreams.

Send the Angels

In 2004, Bradley released the gospel-themed album Send the Angels via Mountain Home Records. Bradley next signed with the independent label Compass Records, which would bring out her next three albums — 2006’s Catch Tomorrow, 2009’s Don’t Turn Your Back, and 2011’s Somewhere South of Crazy. In 2007, Bradley was named Female Bluegrass Vocalist of the Year at the International Bluegrass Music Association’s annual awards; she would go on to win the award four more times, in 2008, 2009, 2011, and 2012. Bradley struck a new recording deal in 2015 with the respected bluegrass label Pinecastle Records. Pinecastle would release Pocket Full of Keys in 2015, which went on to be nominated for a Grammy Award as Best Bluegrass Album. In 2017, she returned with an album simply titled Dale Ann Bradley.

Catham Country Line – Rock in the River

A staple of the Yep Roc roster since 2005, North Carolina’s Chatham County Line often get labeled as a bluegrass act, though that’s only a small part of what they do. More than anything, they’re an Americana string band focused around the subtle songwriting talents of singer/guitarist Dave Wilson, who also acts as producer on Autumn, the group’s eighth LP. In the album’s press release, Wilson compares his band to both an old bowling alley and a hardware store in that they reliably deliver a familiar experience that keeps customers coming back year after year. It’s self-deprecating, for sure, but Chatham County Line are anything but flashy, and they are certainly reliable in terms of quality and tone. For a string band album titled Autumn, they deliver exactly what you’d want: a nuanced selection of warm, earthy music replete with gentle guitar picking, woody mandolin, muted banjo, occasional piano, and a robust vocal blend to evoke the wistful changing of the season. A rich inner language can be felt between Wilson and his colleagues John Teer (mandolin, fiddle), Chandler Holt (banjo, vocal), and Greg Readling (bass, piano, pedal steel, organ) whose parts all dovetail perfectly in the casual kind of way that comes from years of collaborating together. Instead of coming out of the gate at a sprint, they open with “You Are My Light,” an early highlight with an underpinning of late-year darkness in its slinky midtempo hook. The maritime-themed “Siren Song,” another strong cut, is imbued with a timeless comfort that belies its fine craft. In fact, the band’s amiable delivery often draws attention away from their effortless compositions and arrangements to the point that they can occasionally come across as unassuming. It’s once again the autumnal darkness that pulls them into sharper focus on the standout “Moving Pictures of My Mind,” a haunting ballad whose very essence conjures up the chillier, lonesome side of their album’s title.