DISClaimer (9/16/09)

The Americana music convention begins today in Nashville, so what better time to run a column about the genre? The artists we’re talking about today are all up for awards at Thursday’s gala at the Ryman Auditorium. So we’re talking the cream of Americana, here. Earlier in the year, I raved about nominees such as […]

DISClaimer (9/11/09)

It’s country collaboration day! Ronnie Milsap is singing with Trace Adkins. Bruce Springsteen turns up as a guest on John Fogerty’s album. Billy Gibbons meets Brooks & Dunn in a roadhouse rumble. And in the most unlikely scenario of all, Hank Williams Jr. takes a ride in Appalachia with The Grascals. And mostly the match-up […]

DISClaimer (9/4/09)

This is quite a mixed bag. Leeann Atherton clocks in with a dreamy blues tune. Rocker Ronnie Godfrey has a Tennessee Titans fight song. We have excellent Nashville songwriter albums from Bill Luther and Kent Blazy. And there’s a whole flurry of newcomers. Among them, Melanie Denard wins our DisCovery Award. And to add some […]

DISClaimer (8/28/09)

The stars are twinkling so brightly that I am temporarily blinded. That is to say, I simply can’t make up my mind. Should I choose the hearty male country vocal? What about our teen-queen sales champion? And then there’s the refreshingly rocking group performance. All three qualify for a Disc of the Day prize, yet […]

DISClaimer (8/21/09)

We live in an era of singles and tracks, but there are still a few out there who buck the trend. It pleases me to report that there are several folks in this week’s stack of platters who still make true ALBUMS. There is an art to this that many mainstream country artists seem to […]

DISClaimer (8/14/09)

It is independents’ day. We are in what are known as the dog days of summer, when major-label releases slow to a trickle in anticipation of the big fall product push. What better time for the indies to scurry about and make some noise? As is generally the case in surveying indie singles, the quality […]

DISClaimer (8/7/09)

This stack of platters is a nice mix of veterans and baby acts. In the former column are Marty Raybon and Brady Seals, both of whom have splendid CD’s coming your way. Somewhere in between vet and baby are Trey Hensley, The Coal Men, Emma Jacob, Mica Roberts and Lee Brice, all of whom competed […]

Book Review of “How The Beatles Destroyed Rock ’n’ Roll”

How The Beatles Destroyed Rock ’n’ Roll by Elijah Wald (Oxford University Press, 2009) Review by Belmont professor Don Cusic: This isn’t really a book about the Beatles; rather it is a book that notes the distortion of the history of popular music through the years. Wald, who wrote an excellent book on Robert Johnson, […]

Book Offers Cultural Bill Of Rights

Book Review Arts, Inc.: How Greed and Neglect Have Destroyed Our Cultural Rights Bill Ivey (University of California Press, 2008) Bill Ivey is one of the most articulate commentators on art and culture in America. He served as head of the National Endowment for the Arts during the Clinton Administration and prior to that was […]

Bluegrass DISClaimer (10/2/09)

The best part of the bluegrass-music week starts today. Up until now it has been mostly panel discussions, showcases, a trade show and last night’s awards gala. Today begins the Bluegrass Fan Fest part of the IBMA’s convention. On Friday, Saturday and Sunday you get nothing but music, music, music on the lower level of […]