2011 Americana Music Award Nominees Announced

Elizabeth Cook on the stove

Here’s the announced list for Americana Music Association Honors and Nominees: The ceremony is scheduled for Thursday, October 13 at the historic Ryman Auditorium in Nashville.  My comments follow each category…

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Band of Joy, Robert Plant
Welder, Elizabeth Cook
Harlem River Blues, Justin Townes Earle
Blessed, Lucinda Williams

ARTIST OF THE YEAR
Buddy Miller
Elizabeth Cook
Hayes Carll
Robert Plant

NEW/EMERGING ARTIST OF THE YEAR
The Civil Wars
Mumford And Sons
The Secret Sisters
Jessica Lea Mayfield

DUO/GROUP OF THE YEAR
The Avett Brothers
The Civil Wars
Mumford And Sons
Robert Plant and the Band Of Joy

SONG OF THE YEAR
Decemberists with Gillian Welch- “Down By The Water”
Elizabeth Cook – “El Camino”
Hayes Carll – “Kmag Yoyo”
Justin Townes Earle – “Harlem River Blues”

INSTRUMENTALIST OF THE YEAR
Buddy Miller
Gurf Morlix
Kenny Vaughan
Sarah Jarosz
Will Kimbrough

Elizabeth Cook, Jason Isbell hit Indy on same night

Two great alt-country shows in Indianapolis this Friday. Elizabeth Cook’s at Spencer’s Stadium Tavern, while Jason Isbell and his band hit the stage at Radio Radio. Damn tough call to make, because both joints are great. And take the dueling shows for what it really is: Indianapolis (and these two clubs, among a handful of other hard-booking venues) sits in just the right place – close to Tennessee, but South of Chicago – to capture some righteous alt-country music artists. Continue reading “Elizabeth Cook, Jason Isbell hit Indy on same night”

New Todd Snider and the Eastside Bulldogs video

Todd Snider has evolved from young 20-something strummer,  playing Jerry Jeff Walker tunes around Austin because he felt he must, to a straight-up, full-blown rock and roll band leader with the should-be-and-maybe-they-are legendary Nervous Wrecks, to now having built a seemingly solid career as a barefoot neo-folkie who can whip your ass with his lyrics.  Along the way, he’s proven himself to be the singer of great songs, writer of words that show his near-genius respect and understanding of the human condition, and smoked a lot of weed. Continue reading “New Todd Snider and the Eastside Bulldogs video”

Roots-Rock Music Notes: Indiana Americana w/ Jeff Byrd, Gamblin’ Christmas. Plus Hank III full of attitude

+ Indianapolis roots-rock guy Jeff Byrd has formed a new band, and we should start to hear some music from them soon. Fans of the Gear Daddies and BoDeans will like what he’s putting together. Byrd’s most recent release was in 2008, an album called Stereoville.

+ Gamblin’ Christmas has been busy recording a third release, and have added hosting duties on the first Friday Hillbilly Happy Hour of every month at the Melody Inn. Watch for the folk duo with the sweet Everly Brother harmonies to be posting songs from the new album as they finish mixing. The website is gamblinchristmas.com.

+ Watch for two good shows June 4 (next Friday): alt-country darlin’ Elizabeth Cook at Spencer’s Stadium Tavern and former Drive-By Trucker Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit rock at Radio Radio. More on both shows early next week.

+ Hank Williams III’s new album “Rebel Within” is out. It’s the final record for Curb Records, and the rocky relationship will end.

In an interview with Outlaw Radio Chicago, he said “It’s got the slow ones, it’s got the fast ones, and a little attitude. Hopefully they’ll see that I gave them a good record. I could have gave them nothing but static and noise and been like ‘Ah, here ya go, it’s been nice knowing you.’ But I gave them a good record man.”