For this outing of DisClaimer, it’s all about the future.
There are plenty of fine works by established stars here — Jon Pardi, Garth & Blake, Kane Brown, Jimmie Allen. But my ears perked up the most for the up and comers.
The Disc of the Day award goes to Jenny Tolman, for whom I wish nothing short of superstardom. For today’s DisCovery Award, we have a tie between two terrific pop-leaning platters. They come to us from Blanco Brown and The Sisterhood Band.
JENNY TOLMAN/So Pretty
Writers: Mark D. Sanders, Sophie Sanders, Jenny Tolman; Producer: Dave Brainard; Publishers: Songs of Sanderosa/Old Sol, ASCAP/SESAC; Old Sol (track)
– Gorgeous. Her voice aches exquisitely on this beautiful melody. It’s a woman-to-woman ballad about one losing her love to the other. Jenny’s album-release party for her awesome There Goes the Neighborhood CD is at City Winery on July 15. Those of you in A&R, in particular, need to hear this extraordinary artist. Get there however you can.
Writers: none listed; Producer: none listed; Publishers: none listed; BBR
– If there is even the slightest doubt in your mind about how wonderfully worthy this new artist is, this will erase it. If you’re already a fan, like I am, this will totally confirm it. It’s an acoustic cover of a Matchbox 20 tune where Allen sings his face off. Find it online and experience a little bliss.
THE SISTERHOOD BAND/Bullet
Writers: none listed; Producer: none listed; Publishers: none listed; Arista
– Alyssa Bonagura and Ruby Stewart were both fabulously gifted solo singer-songwriters in Music City. Together in this ensemble, they are dynamite. Their vocal harmonies are twin-like, and their production skills are an audio delight. This track has snappy rhythm, echoey energy and feisty charm. They might have “dodged a bullet,” but you shouldn’t. The other available Sisterhood track is the poppy, choppy “Get Up and Go.” More, more, more.
KANE BROWN & MARSHMELLO/One Thing Right
Writers: Kane Brown/Marshmello/Jesse Frasure/Josh Hoge/Matthew McGuinn; Producer: none listed; Publishers: none listed; RCA
– Solid. Kane’s lead vocal keeps it grounded while international star Marshmello’s audio touches flitter around him. It’s all about the groove.
BLANCO BROWN/The Git Up
Writers: none listed; Producers: none listed; Publishers: none listed; BBR
– This is a boatload of fun, a wonderfully wacky set of instructions for the saloon dancefloor. I am told this is already a viral sensation, and I can certainly hear why. It’s an irresistible novelty. He was a big fan favorite at CMA Music Fest.
JON PARDI/Ain’t Always The Cowboy
Writers: Brandon Kinney/Josh Thompson; Producers: Jon Pardi/Bart Butler/Ryan Gore; Publishers: none listed; Capitol
– Hot on the heels of his single and title tune of the upcoming “Heartache Medication” CD comes another advance taste of the collection. As always, he is a beacon lighting up the darkness to lead us back to true country music. From the fiddle intro to the wailing choruses, this is righteous.
JON LANGSTON/Now You Know
Writers: Jon Langston/Brad Clawson/Brock Berryhill; Producer: Jody Stevens; Publishers: Sony-ATV Countryside/Warner-Tamerlane/Mandy’s Favorite/Murphy the Wolf/Five Miles West/Don’t Be a Gypsy, BMI
– The truck, the hunting dog, the booze, the cooler, the babe, the fishing, the small-town thang, the red neck. You know the drill.
GARTH BROOKS & BLAKE SHELTON/Dive Bar
Writers: none listed; Producer: none listed; Publisher: None listed; Pearl
– Raucous and rowdy. Full of high spirits and good intentions. Somewhat reminiscent of the atmosphere created by the iconic “Friends in Low Places.” Hit bound.
JEANNIE C. RILEY/Me and Bobby McGee
Writers: Kristofferson/Foster; Producers: Larry Marrs & J.R. McNeely; Publishers: none listed; Country rewind
– Her plain-spoken, Texas-twang delivery is perfect for this timeless story song. The tempo is jaunty, and the steel passages are perfection. Never previously released, it is drawn from 1970 radio-show tapes that have been given new productions and now packaged as a CD titled The Music City Sessions. Country Rewind Records has similar releases of long-lost and updated collections by Waylon Jennings, Johnny Russell, Conway Twitty, Connie Smith, Mickey Gilley, Faron Young, Ferlin Husky and more. Cool stuff.
JACKSON MICHELSON/One At A Time
Writers: Jackson Michelson/Justin Ebach/STeven Dale Jones; Producer: none listed; Publishers: none listed; Curb
– Generic sounding. A memorable melody would have been nice.
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