Rock's Backpages Library Rock's Backpages

Country, Country Rock and Bluegrass

Chet Atkins, Floyd Cramer: Floyd Cramer and Chet Atkins: The Quiet Men from Nashville, Tennessee

Profile and Interview by Norman Jopling, Record Mirror, September 1962

THE TWO most dominant figures in the Nashville, Tennessee, music scene – a scene noted for loud noises – are QUIET men. Chet Atkins, we ...

Patsy Cline Overcame Grave Car Crash Injuries

Profile and Interview by Alan Smith, New Musical Express, December 1962

PERSONAL tragedy is nothing to Patsy Cline, who sings of 'Heartaches' on her first big hit disc in Britain. Her fast-rising career was interrupted last ...

Marty Robbins, Patsy Cline: Grand Ole Opry Show: Carnegie Hall, New York NY

Live Review by Alan Smith, New Musical Express, December 1962

C-and-W invades the New York concert world ...

Jim Reeves: Long-lasting Jim Reeves Takes Things Very Calmly

Interview by Ian Dove, New Musical Express, June 1963

JIM REEVES comes from Texas, has that celebrated lazy Texan drawl and a relaxed attitude towards singing and his audience. Everything appears to be taken ...

Bobby Bare, Little Jimmy Dickens, Roger Miller: Roger Miller & Little Jimmy Dickens: A Happy Thing Happened On Our Way To Hullabaloo

Report by Jane Heil, Hit Parader, April 1966

ISN'T THAT Roger Miller standing over on the sidelines at the Hullabaloo rehearsal? Are those tears in his eyes? What's he doing here, anyway; he isn't even ...

Bob Dylan, Charlie McCoy, Elvis Presley, Foggy Mountain Boys: "Recording Sessions I Have Known" by Charlie McCoy

Interview by uncredited writer, Hit Parader, May 1966

When you hear a harmonica wailing in the background on currently popular blues, country, folk or pop recordings, it's probably being played by an ultra-talented guy ...

Jim Reeves: Jim's First Number One

Report by Alan Smith, New Musical Express, September 1966

From Tennessee Mrs. Mary Reeves says thanks for Jim's first number one ...

Bobbie Gentry Reveals Message Behind 'Ode'

Interview by uncredited writer, KRLA Beat, August 1967

WHO KILLED Billy Joe McAllister? Or did he jump? What was thrown off that bridge? And why? These are just some of the questions raised ...

Roger Miller: In The Red For Eight Of His Ten Singing Years

Interview by David Griffiths, Record Mirror, December 1967

ROGER MILLER – both on and off record – has a quiet, relaxed, uncomplicated approach to his music and to life. Yet he's had 10 ...

The Stone Poneys: Linda Leading Stone Poneys To Gold Water

Interview by Tony Leigh, KRLA Beat, December 1967

THERE IS A new type of singing group at the forefront of the pop music industry — the group that is led by a female ...

Bobby Goldsboro: Before 'Honey' I Had Almost Given Up Hope, Says Bobby Goldsboro

Interview by Richard Green, New Musical Express, May 1968

HIT AFTER HIT has been written by Bobby Goldsboro, but for other people as far as Britain is concerned. His own songs have taken him ...

Bobbie Gentry: 'I'll Never Tire Of Billy Joe'

Profile and Interview by David Griffiths, Record Mirror, June 1968

STANDING around, waiting to meet Bobbie Gentry, I glanced through the two press handouts about her. ...

Merle Haggard: Home-fried Humor and Cowboy Soul

Profile and Interview by Al Aronowitz, Rolling Stone, August 1968

COUNTRY MUSIC is blowing in like a fresh wind from the West. America can't be defined by its pay-toilets and its smog. Merle Haggard never ...

Poco: The Pavilion, Flushing Meadow Park, Queens, New York NY

Live Review by Mike Jahn, New York Times, The, August 1969

West Coast Band Pavilion Winner: Poco Plays Country Music in Flushing Meadow Park ...

Johnny Cash: Country Boy

Profile and Interview by Richard Green, New Musical Express, September 1969

Hard life of the legendary folk star ...

Johnny Cash: Madison Square Garden, New York NY

Live Review by Mike Jahn, New York Times, The, December 1969

20,000 AT GARDEN HEAR JOHNNY CASH ...

Charlie Rich: Life's Little Ups And Downs

Review by Greil Marcus, Rolling Stone, December 1969

BOB DYLAN HAS SAID more than once that Charlie Rich is one of his favorite musicians – as a songwriter and as a singer. Nik ...

Area Code 615: Area Code 615 (Polydor)

Review by Richard Williams, Melody Maker, January 1970

AREA CODE 615. 'Southern Comfort'; 'I've Been Loving You Too Long'; 'Hey Jude'; 'Nashville 9-N.Y.1'; 'Lady Madonna'; 'Ruby'; 'Crazy Arms'/'Get Back'; 'Why Ask Why'; 'Li'l ...

Johnny Cash Walks The Line...

Profile by Danny Goldberg, Circus, March 1970

JOHNNY CASH the Misfit: Drug induced and being busted for possession of benzedrine at the Mexican border happened long after he had made a name ...

Flying Burrito Brothers: The Flying Burrito Brothers

Profile and Interview by uncredited writer, Circus, March 1970

WHAT IS the world coming to when the Jefferson Airplane, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young and the Grateful Dead get cut to pieces by a ...

Kenny Rogers and the First Edition: Visual Scene Important For Kenny Rogers: The First Edition

Report and Interview by uncredited writer, Beat Instrumental, March 1970

‘THEY'RE a bunch of real nice guys,’ said the publicity man, talking about Kenny Rogers and the First Edition. Which is a very standard line ...

Don Gibson: Lonesome Number One: Profile of Don Gibson

Profile by Charlie Gillett, Record Mirror, March 1970

DON GIBSON is the most original country and western singer of the past 15 years, and that's been his problem. While everybody else has been ...

Delaney & Bonnie, Flying Burrito Brothers, John Phillips: Delaney & Bonnie & Friends: On Tour; Flying Burrito Brothers: Burrito Deluxe; John Phillips: Wolfking of LA

Review by Richard Williams, Times, The, June 1970

THAT DELANEY AND BONNIE have been instrumental in reshaping a considerable part of the ethos of modem pop music is indisputable. Eric Clapton, the charismatic ...

John Phillips: John The Wolfking of L.A. (Stateside)

Review by Richard Williams, Melody Maker, June 1970

INSIDE THE Mama's and the Papa's, something better was waiting to get out – and this is it. ...

Flying Burrito Brothers, Gram Parsons: Gram Parsons, The Burrito Ego Man

Interview by Jacoba Atlas, Melody Maker, July 1970

LOS ANGELES, Tuesday: Gram Parsons, founder of the Flying Burrito Brothers, was a Byrd, a southerner and a Harvard College Drop-out. With the formation of ...

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band: Nitty Gritty Dirt Band: The Troubadour, Los Angeles

Live Review by Todd Everett, Phonograph Record, October 1970

FOR several years, the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band has been a steady fixture in such local L.A. clubs as the Troubadour. ...

Merle Haggard: The Fightin' Side Of Me (Capitol)

Review by Richard Williams, Melody Maker, October 1970

MERLE HAGGARD is a tough ol' boy. While Johnny Cash broods about it, you have the feeling that Haggard might just get it done. ...

Burning Red Ivanhoe, The Byrds, MC5: The Byrds: (Untitled); MC5: Back in the U.S.A.; Burning Red Ivanhoe

Review by Richard Williams, Times, The, December 1970

BESIDES BEING ONE of the seminal rock and roll bands, the Byrds also possess perhaps the music's oldest case-history. Of the group which came out ...

Johnny Cash: Jailhouse, Jesus and H.G. Wells

Report and Interview by Philip Norman, Sunday Times, 1971

THE HEAVY carved front door into House of Cash, Johnny Cash's state mansion, in Madison, Tennessee, swung inward to reveal blinding sunshine and the awe-struck ...

Paul Siebel: Woodsmoke and Oranges/Jackknife Gypsy

Review by Ellen Sander, Saturday Review, January 1971

PAUL SIEBEL albums, I have found, are a good prescription for tired ears, sort of country Geritol boosting the funk and grit in the bloodstream ...

Ray Stevens: 'Bridget The Midget' Man Says Religious Lyrics Will Be Next Big Thing

Interview by James Johnson, New Musical Express, March 1971

People are getting sick to death of the 'put-the-world-to-rights songs' ...

Clover: Forty Niner (Liberty)

Review by Jerry Gilbert, Sounds, May 1971

IF CLOVER'S first album on Liberty was good, then this follow up is fantastic. The material is a rich variety of country music which brings ...

The Byrds: Byrd Watching (part 1)

Interview by Roy Hollingworth, Melody Maker, May 1971

Roger McGuinn: into the mystic ...

The Byrds, The Kentucky Colonels: The Byrds: Byrd Watching (part 2)

Interview by Richard Williams, Melody Maker, May 1971

THE COUNTRY consonants of Clarence White's guitar have fooled a lot of people — me included — into thinking that the man must have come ...

The Byrds: Colston Hall, Bristol

Live Review by Roy Hollingworth, Melody Maker, May 1971

A PINCH of snuff, the eucalyptus stabs the eye. McGuinn fastens the tin and slips it into his suit pocket. The rest of the guy's ...

Linda Ronstadt: Fillmore East, New York NY

Live Review by Mike Jahn, New York Times, The, May 1971

Bright Song Style Of Linda Ronstadt Lights Up Fillmore ...

Waylon Jennings: The Taker/Tulsa (RCA 4487)

Review by Nick Tosches, Fusion, May 1971

EVEN THOUGH this album stinks it wasn't always like that for Mr. Jennings. ...

Conway Twitty: The Lonely Country Blues Boy

Overview by Bill Millar, Record Mirror, August 1971

WHEN discussing the history of rock 'n' roll, a number of writers have recently implied that the attention paid to black influences has long obscured ...

Chet Atkins, Ernest Tubb: The Cold, Cold Heart of Country Music

Report by Philip Norman, Sunday Times, 1972

FOR ALL that Country and Western hopes nothing will change, its heroes die horribly fast. ...

The Everly Brothers: Growing Apart

Report and Interview by Philip Norman, Sunday Times, 1972

PHIL IS THE fastidious one. Don was happy to stay at another motel with a northern draught sweeping its gallery and cows grazing round the ...

Tom T. Hall: In Search of a Song

Review by Richard Cromelin, Rolling Stone, January 1972

FACT IS, In Search of a Song doesn't quite match the quality of any of Hall's three previous Mercury albums. Meaning only that a couple ...

Rick Nelson: How Ricky Became Rick

Interview by Caroline Boucher, Disc and Music Echo, March 1972

A YEAR and a half ago and full of enthusiasm for his new band, Rick Nelson set off for Europe and a tour of American ...

Kris Kristofferson, Rita Coolidge: Kris Kristofferson and Rita Coolidge: Kris and the Delta lady

Interview by Rosalind Russell, Disc and Music Echo, May 1972

KRIS KRISTOFFERSON and the Delta Lady — Rita Coolidge — arrived in London last week to a hero's welcome. Could it be that people are ...

Hank Snow, Jimmie Driftwood, Jimmie Rodgers: Roots of Country: Jimmie Rodgers, Jimmie Driftwood, Hank Snow albums

Review by Tony Russell, Cream, June 1972

THESE THREE double albums (with a fourth by Eddy Arnold) open a reissue series presumably intended to uncover the roots of today’s country music. Each ...

Charlie Rich: Rich and Mellow

Discography by Bill Millar, Record Mirror, August 1972

"ULTIMATELY there was Charlie Rich. Rich was a Georgia cotton farmer and he was into his thirties, he had grey hair and a paunch. Still ...

Johnny Cash: Hard Cash To Cleanse Your Soul

Report and Interview by Nick Kent, New Musical Express, October 1972

IT'S 7.30 P.M. at the backstage entrance of the Albert Hall and strange things are happening. It's Wednesday, the second of Johnny Cash's performances at ...

Commander Cody & His Lost Planet Airmen: Hot Licks, Cold Steel & Truckers Favorites (Paramount)

Review by Loraine Alterman, New York Times, The, October 1972

Truckin' the Blues Away ...

Poco: A Good Feeling To Know

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Rock, December 1972

IT'S VIRTUALLY impossible to do anything even resembling country rock nowadays without being compared to Poco in some aspect or another, because if Poco didn't ...

Rick Nelson: You're Not A Kid Anymore!

Retrospective and Interview by Todd Everett, Phonograph Record, December 1972

ROCK AND ROLL was here to stay. We knew it in 1957, and Danny and the Juniors put it into song in 1958. But what ...

Poco: A Good Feelin' To Know (Epic).

Review by Nick Kent, New Musical Express, January 1973

I KNOW a lot of city-boy cynic rock writers like to put down this band, pointing out how lightweight they are and how they come ...

Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show: The Funny Side of Dr Hook

Profile and Interview by Danny Holloway, New Musical Express, March 1973

DR. HOOK were unexpectedly thrust to popularity via their international hit 'Sylvia's Mother' last summer. The strange thing is, people were buying the song and ...

Commander Cody & His Lost Planet Airmen: Hot Licks, Cold Steel and Truckers Favorites (Paramount)

Review by Jonh Ingham, New Musical Express, March 1973

IT WAS like driving through an infinite oven, the sun dancing in cool water-mirages across the four-lane asphalt. Wayne wiped the sweat from his brow. ...

Hank Williams

Guide by John Morthland, Creem, April 1973

WHERE TO begin an article about Hank Williams! How about with the kind of gross overstatement that it's impossible to disprove (or prove)? To wit: ...

Emmylou Harris, Gram Parsons: Gram Parsons: Parsons Knows...

Interview by Loraine Alterman, Melody Maker, April 1973

Gram Parsons, former member of the Byrds and Burritos and now the proud owner of a solo album, talks to Loraine Alterman in New York ...

Tammy Wynette, Toni and Terry: Tammy Wynette/Toni & Terry albums

Review by Charlie Gillett, Rolling Stone, April 1973

Toni and Terry: Cross CountryTammy Wynette: My Man ...

Townes Van Zandt: The Late Great Townes Van Zandt (Poppy)

Review by Jeff Walker, Phonograph Record, May 1973

TOWNES VAN ZANDT is so much more than just another singer/songwriter. He's a storyteller; a mood-maker. ...

Joe Simon: Country Joe

Report and Interview by Roger St. Pierre, New Musical Express, July 1973

SOUL MAN Joe Simon has scored a long run of American hits — with country songs. And now his 'Step By Step' currently climbing the ...

Waylon Jennings: You Gotta Be A Man First, 'Fore You Can Be Anything...

Interview by Michael Watts, Melody Maker, August 1973

Waylon Jennings, the cowboy who finally hit that golden trail. By MICHAEL WATTS in New York ...

Commander Cody: Country Casanova

Review by Nick Kent, New Musical Express, August 1973

I'VE GOT to admit I was thrown when I first saw the cover of this album. The dude in the cowboy shirt leaning next to ...

Commander Cody: Commander of the Ozone

Profile by Chris Rowley, International Times, August 1973

OZONE: Form of Oxygen having three atoms per molecule, pungent, refreshing odour and exhilarating influence. ...

Asleep at the Wheel, Charlatans, The (US), Commander Cody, Country Gazette, Dan Hicks and His Hot Licks, Dillard and Clark, The Dillards, New Riders of the Purple Sage: A Guide To Contemporary Country Groups

Report by Mick Houghton, Let It Rock, September 1973

THIS AUTUMN, England is due for an invasion by some of America's top contemporary country groups. The new wave will be well represented by Commander ...

The Charlie Daniels Band: Charlie Daniels: Writer Rides High on 'Uneasy Rider'

Interview by Ian Dove, New York Times, The, September 1973

PICKING ITS way carefully across the playlists of the music radio stations is a song titled 'Uneasy Rider', performed by its composer Charlie Daniels. The ...

Charlie Rich: A Guide

Guide by Metal Mike Saunders, Phonograph Record, October 1973

If you think you know what frustration is like, try this on for size: imagine you were a singer who had come up with Sun ...

Gram Parsons: The Superstar Who Didn't Quite Make It

Obituary by Nick Kent, New Musical Express, October 1973

GRAM PARSONS somehow never quite got to be the nationally-touted superstar he deserved to be, which is possibly as much his own fault as anyone ...

Conway Twitty, Loretta Lynn, Merle Haggard: Conway Twitty & Loretta Lynn: Louisiana Woman – Mississippi Man; Merle Haggard: I Love Dixie Blues...

Review by John Morthland, Creem, November 1973

THE SEARCH for the most commercial mating of country and rock continues unabated, and it's working both ways. In the wake of Kristofferson, the Young ...

Tanya Tucker: Delta Dawn, What's Your Mama's Name (Columbia)

Review by Ken Barnes, Phonograph Record, November 1973

TANYA TUCKER just turned fifteen years old and, as they say, she's taken the country music world by storm. Her first hit, 'Delta Dawn', went ...

Gram Parsons Death Mystery

Report by Jacoba Atlas, Circus, December 1973

Gram Parsons: His body disappeared and the story behind it is cloaked in a veil of mystery. Why was it stolen and why was it ...

Warren Smith: A Great Rockabilly

Profile by Martin Hawkins, Country Music People, December 1973

THE SMALL record company has always had a significant place in the Country Music recording industry for it is these which provide the raw material ...

Buck Owens: The Pop Life: Buck Owens Bringing Nashville North by Way of West Coast

Interview by Ian Dove, New York Times, The, January 1974

"THERE'S SO much prejudice in New York — I think they're afraid of it." The speaker was the country music singer Buck Owens, and the ...

Country Music: There's Glitter in Them Thar Hills

Comment by Nick Tosches, Zoo World, January 1974

THE CONCERT hall darkens. The band's rhinestone-studded, sequined. custom-tailored Harvey Krantz suits glimmer in the dim like so many jars of snared fireflies. Morphemes of ...

Linda Ronstadt: Ronstadt Country

Interview by Barbara Charone, New Musical Express, February 1974

TIME WAS when being a country music fan was difficult going. You could secretly dig people like Dolly Parton or Charlie Rich but it wasn't ...

Gram Parsons: Grievous Angel (Reprise import)

Review by Chrissie Hynde, New Musical Express, February 1974

WHEN YOU'RE sitting in a trailer at 2 a.m. somewhere out in 'Last Stopsville', and there's just you, one more hit of apple wine, the ...

Emmylou Harris, Gram Parsons: Gram Parsons with Emmylou Harris: Grievous Angel

Review by Bud Scoppa, Rolling Stone, March 1974

MICK JAGGER wrote 'Wild Horses' for and about the late Gram Parsons and its chorus describes the paradox that fueled Parsons’ life and vision. '...Wild ...

Tom T. Hall: For The People In The Last Hard Town (Mercury)

Review by John Swenson, Zoo World, April 1974

TOM T. HALL is unquestionably one of the finest country music songwriters ever to pick up a pen or belt down a double shot of ...

Country Gazette, David Wiffen, The Dillards, The Kentucky Colonels, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band: Nitty Gritty Dirt Band/Dillards/Country Gazette/David Wiffen/Kentucky Colonels Albums

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1974

Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and Friends: Will The Circle Be Unbroken (United Artists)Dillards: Tribute To The American Duck (United Artists)Country Gazette: Don't Give Up Your ...

New Riders of the Purple Sage: Home Home On The Road

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1974

IT WAS Greil Marcus who founded what has since become known as the "What-is-this shit?" school of rock criticism. ...

Chilli Willi & The Red Hot Peppers: Red Hot

Profile and Interview by Phil Hardy, Let It Rock, June 1974

A month or two ago, a jovial group of rock critics in search of a drink and some music stumbled across Chilli Willi and the ...

Narvel Felts

Profile and Interview by Martin Hawkins, Country Music People, June 1974

"DID YOU think I went over all right?" asked Narvel Felts. "Perhaps I was a bit too modern-sounding". We were standing backstage during the climax ...

Bob Wills & The Texas Playboys: Western Swingtime Music: A Cool Breeze in the American Desert

Overview by Jerry Zolten, Sing Out!, June 1974

IN THE GOLDEN days of big band swing, while Benny Goodman and Duke Ellington were sizzling in the cities, a back-country form of big band ...

Johnny Cash: Ragged Old Flag

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1974

I'VE ALWAYS HAD me suspicions about Johnny Cash. ...

Waylon Jennings: Maybe They Don't Even Know I'm There

Interview by Nick Tosches, Zoo World, August 1974

LOOKING MORE like an Exxon station grease monkey on his lunch break than the Pontifex Maximus of Nashville's Telecaster outlaws, Waylon Jennings sits there washing ...

Jimmy Buffett: Living And Dying In 3/4 Time

Review by Bob Woffinden, New Musical Express, August 1974

JIMMY BUFFETT will never be a rock'n'roll star. ...

New Riders of the Purple Sage: "People Used To Think Of Us As A Toy Band"

Interview by Danny Goldberg, Hit Parader, September 1974

BUDDY CAGE, steel guitar player for the New Riders and Marmaduke the singer were having a disagreement. "Those are a pretty weird bunch of folks," ...

Scott Walker: Walker Scott We Had It All

Review by Fred Dellar, New Musical Express, September 1974

WE HAD IT ALL is the country album Walker's been planning for sometime. And it's country the Walker way, sophisticated and on velvet. Del Newman ...

Sue Richards

Profile by Martin Hawkins, Country Music People, November 1974

IT WAS 1 a.m. on a Sunday morning in Nashville. We were driving slightly unsteadily on Broad Street – a strangely empty scene since the ...

B.B. King, Johnny Cash: Johnny Cash: The Junkie And The Juicehead Minus Me (CBS); B.B. King: Friends (ABC)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1974

IN WHICH two culture heroes find themselves well and truly on the artistic skids. ...

Nashville: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (MCA)

Review by John Morthland, Creem, 1975

EVEN MORE THAN most soundtracks, this one is totally inseparable from its film. Taken alone, it’s damn near unlistenable. ...

The Byrds, Roger McGuinn: Roger McGuinn and Country Rock: Older Than Yesterday

Retrospective and Interview by Michael Gray, Let It Rock, January 1975

IT'S FRIDAY 30TH AUGUST, in Birmingham England, and it's afternoon. Roger McGuinn is listening to a track off his second solo album, Peace On You. ...

The Eagles

Interview by Barbara Charone, Hit Parader, January 1975

IF YOU thought blue jeans and sneakers went out with the sixties, better check out the Eagles. Raised on a steady diet of wonder bread ...

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band: The Wit And Wisdom Of The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band

Interview by Nick Tosches, Creem, January 1975

JUST WHAT THE hell is "good time music" supposed to mean? Is it John Sebastian lilting those fruity dry-hump ditties like 'You Didn't Have To ...

Kinky Friedman: Kinky Friedman

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1975

ONE LEARNS FROM the customary reliable sources-from-which-one-learns things that Kinky Friedman's original ideas for the title of this album included "Come Back Little Kinky" and ...

Linda Ronstadt: Heart Like A Wheel (Capitol)

Review by Tony Stewart, New Musical Express, January 1975

LINDA RONSTADT is a remarkable Country Rock singer who sells plenty of records, with Capitol reportedly shifting 150,000 copies of this new one in the ...

Charlie Rich: The Depression, Country Music and Me

Essay by Al Aronowitz, Rolling Stone, February 1975

This sorrowful piece was sent to us, by third-class mail, by Al Aronowitz, pop columnist for the New York Post until the paper dropped him ...

Flying Burrito Brothers: Sneaky Pete Kleinow

Interview by Mick Houghton, ZigZag, March 1975

ZZ: HOW DID you come to be part of the whole related family of Los Angeles musicians? You actually come from Michigan? ...

Charlie Rich: The Man And His Career

Profile by Martin Hawkins, Country Music People, May 1975

CHARLIE RICH was twenty-three when he travelled to West Memphis to try his luck as a professional musician. Subsequently he moved his base of operations ...

Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen: Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen

Review by Mick Houghton, Let It Rock, May 1975

When you step up to a Juke box and you slip a nickel in,You can bet your bottom dollar when the record starts to spin,You'll ...

Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen: Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen (Warner Bros.)

Review by Dave Marsh, Rolling Stone, May 1975

IN 1971, COMMANDER Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen, already a legend in such disparate climes as San Francisco and Detroit, finally reached a recording ...

Mac Davis: All the Love in the World

Review by John Mendelsohn, Rolling Stone, May 1975

HEREWITH, THE Legend of the Songpainter. ...

Bill Monroe: Greyfriars Monastery, Glasgow

Live Review by Dave Laing, Sounds, May 1975

Kentucky Friar Bluegrass: At 63, Bill Monroe's Fingers Are Still as Nimble As Ever. Dave Laing reports from Greyfriars Monastery, near Glasgow. ...

Bill Monroe: Hammersmith Odeon, London

Live Review by Vivien Goldman, New Musical Express, May 1975

BILL MONROE IS the main-man of bluegrass music, a veteran innovator whose recording career spans 40 years. ...

The Eagles: California Dreamin’

Interview by Tom Nolan, Phonograph Record, June 1975

"I WANT TO SLEEP with you in some chocolate tonight," Glenn Frey sings in impromptu addition to the lyric of ‘Peaceful Easy Feelin’, and the ...

Tammy Wynette: Going UP Country

Report by Rob Partridge, Melody Maker, June 1975

How come a seven-year-old single, re-issued for the fifth time, made it to number one? Robert Partridge gets the full story behind Tammy Wynette's 'Stand ...

Tammy Wynette: Hammersmith Odeon, London

Live Review by Rob Partridge, Melody Maker, June 1975

THREE MONTHS ago Tammy Wynette was little more than cowboy fodder in Britain, appealing only to a small body of country freaks. But, one smasheroo ...

Johnny Cash - John R. Cash

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1975

IN WHICH JOHNNY Cash meets up, quite casual-like, with the '70s and discovers that even though they don't really have a whole lot in common, ...

Emmylou Harris: Pieces Of The Sky

Review by Mick Houghton, ZigZag, August 1975

BUD SCOPPA once described Gram Parsons as the most convincing singer of sad songs he'd heard. Nothing he recorded was more heartrending than 'Love Hurts' ...

Johnny Cash, Marty Robbins: Johnny Cash: Riding the Rails and Marty Robbins: Gunfighter Ballads

Review by Mick Farren, New Musical Express, August 1975

OKAY, SO HERE are two special double album packages from CBS that feature two of the world's greatest exponents of country and western melodrama. ...

Gary Stewart: You're Not the Woman You Used to Be

Review by John Morthland, Rolling Stone, September 1975

THIS COLLECTION OF old singles was released to scoop up some of the financial overflow from country music's current hottest new item. ...

George Jones, Wanda Jackson: George Jones and Wanda Jackson at Hammersmith Odeon

Live Review by Chas de Whalley, New Musical Express, September 1975

THE FOYER OF the Hammersmith Odeon was like Middle America gone London town, except the folks were mostly British and there wasn't a stetson to ...

Starry-Eyed And Laughing: Starry-Eyed and Laughing - Thought Talk

Review by Chas de Whalley, New Musical Express, September 1975

WHILE AMERICAN COUNTRY Rock bands seem to spring up from everywhere, there has yet to be one from these shores who really convince. ...

Willie Nelson: Red Headed Stranger

Review by Mick Houghton, Let It Rock, October 1975

WILLIE NELSON has never written easy songs or recorded easy albums. He has penned his share of country standards over the past fifteen years, all ...

Emmylou Harris Still Loves Her Dolly

Interview by Barbara Charone, Sounds, October 1975

"TACKY ISN'T IT?" Emmylou Harris grinned, pointing to a rainbow coloured T-shirt, the words Palamino Club emblazoned across the chest while a genuine chestnut mare ...

Johnny Cash: The Gospel According to J.C.

Report and Interview by Mick Farren, New Musical Express, October 1975

IF I'D never heard of Johnny Cash and someone came up and described him to me, I can't think of any other entertainer, short of ...

Poco: Keep On Trying

Interview by Jerry Gilbert, Sounds, October 1975

THE SUDDEN relaunch of Poco has kicked up some pretty weird conversations and ironies. For few former Poco buffs are willing to believe that Head ...

Johnny Cash: Look At Them Beans

Review by Mick Farren, New Musical Express, November 1975

I FEAR JOHNNY Cash has turned his back on progress once again. ...

Emmylou Harris: New Victoria, London

Live Review by Penny Valentine, Street Life, December 1975

THE LIGHTS had just gone down, the musicians were just striking up when these two guys fell up the stairs singing loudly, "New York, New ...

Emmylou Harris: Elite Hotel (Reprise MS2236)

Review by Todd Everett, Phonograph Record, January 1976

EMMYLOU HARRIS understands the idiom in which she chooses to work, and respects it: this separates Harris from the country-rock crowd, and makes her virtually ...

Emmylou Harris: Emmylou's Four Star Hotel

Review by Barbara Charone, New Musical Express, January 1976

THE ELITE HOTEL is a swell place. It's best to travel there by car on a hot, sunny day with the windows rolled down, a ...

Bobby Bare: Hard Time Hungrys

Review by Bob Woffinden, New Musical Express, January 1976

In which BOBBY BARE, country singer of the '60's re-emerges with a bunch of Shel Silverstein songs and a socialism as potent as Keir Hardie's; ...

Emmylou Harris

Interview by Harvey Kubernik, Melody Maker, January 1976

"I WAS NERVOUS but I looked forward to playing overseas because I had this feeling there was an audience for my kind of music, especially ...

Ronee Blakley: Welcome

Review by Chas de Whalley, New Musical Express, February 1976

RONEE BLAKLEY was the star of Robert Altman's Nashville, if you remember, the film that was universally condemned by the inhabitants of Music City U.S.A. ...

C.W. McCall: McCall Keeps On Trucking

Profile and Interview by Chris Charlesworth, Melody Maker, February 1976

JUST IMAGINE the scenario: a thousand massive trucks, a petroleum-driven army, hurtling down the highway in a strict convoy formation, all the drivers linked together ...

Emmylou Harris: Sweetheart Of The Rodeo

Interview by Barbara Charone, Sounds, February 1976

EXACTLY EIGHT years ago a very uncertain singer stood in the centre of a New York recording studio singing demos to an audience of muzak ...

Emmylou Harris: The Dome, Brighton

Live Review by Barbara Charone, Sounds, February 1976

"FLOWERS?" Emmylou Harris grinned, staring down at a lovely bouquet hurled onstage as an appreciative thank-you from an ecstatic Brighton crowd. "Hey boys they're not ...

Buck Owens: You Don’t Buck The Rules On The Bus: Buck Owens

Report and Interview by Mick Brown, Street Life, February 1976

IT’S LIKE Tom Wolfe said: you’re either on the bus or you’re off the bus. No three ways about it. ...

Dolly Parton: Dolly, Tammy and Carl: In The Wembley Wild West

Report by Philip Norman, Sunday Times, April 1976

THE GUNFIGHTER walks alone, staying close to the side of the street. His clothes are black and faintly luminous. His hat is tied insolently under ...

Hank Williams Jr.: Hank William Jr. and Friends

Review by John Morthland, Rolling Stone, April 1976

LAST AUGUST, on a hunting trip near the Great Divide at Missoula, Montana, the recently divorced Hank Williams Jr. fell 500 feet down a mountainside, ...

Tammy Wynette: Boots, Brandy, Boots, Bouffants + Buffy

Report and Interview by Mick Farren, New Musical Express, April 1976

THERE WERE more Stetson hats than you could shake a stick at in Wembley last weekend. ...

Gary Stewart: Steppin 'Out

Review by John Morthland, Creem, May 1976

WHAT MOST attracted rock fans to Gary Stewart's first album was his raw, exuberant singing, and the subsequent suspicion that he was really a closet ...

Guy Clark: Old No. 1

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, May 1976

THIS RECORD is a positive gem. However, unless some large quantity of record buyers pick up on it, it is destined to languish in the ...

Gram Parsons: GP (Reprise)*****

Review by Jonh Ingham, Sounds, May 1976

IF YOU woundered why, or where, Rick Grech gets off with performing Gram Parsons type country music, it stems from co-producing this bona fide classic. ...

Emmylou Harris: Bluegrass and Fiddle Festival, Long Beach, California

Live Review by Barbara Charone, Sounds, May 1976

EMMYLOU HARRIS and her excellent Hot Band just keep getting better. Their headline performance at the fourth annual Bluegrass and Fiddle Festival in Long Beach, ...

The Bellamy Brothers: Let Your Love Flow

Review by John Tobler, New Musical Express, May 1976

YOU MUST have heard the single which gives this its title, and there's little doubt that the Bellamy Brothers are a distinctly classy addition to ...

Shelby Singleton

Profile and Interview by Martin Hawkins, Country Music Review, August 1976

SHELBY SINGLETON is well known in the country music business and really should not need introducing to CMR readers. But magazines in the main rightly ...

Emmylou Harris: Honky Tonk Woman

Interview by Barbara Charone, Sounds, August 1976

Emmylou Harris pleads guilty to not being a genius, but she sure can sing country. BARBARA CHARONE reports. ...

Country Joe & The Fish: Country Joe MacDonald: The Essential Country Joe McDonald

Review by John Tobler, New Musical Express, August 1976

ALTHOUGH THERE have been three compilations of his work with the Fish, this is the first collection covering Country Joe's seven solo albums. ...

Bobby Womack: B.W. Goes C&W (United Artists)

Review by Cliff White, New Musical Express, September 1976

RECORDED BEFORE Safety Zone last year, this is the set that Bobby had intended to call Black In The Saddle. UA wouldn't release it at ...

Emmylou Harris Makes Up Leeway

Interview by Chris Charlesworth, Melody Maker, September 1976

IT CAME as something of a surprise to learn that Emmylou Harris and the Hot Band were in town last week. To be precise, they ...

Emmylou Harris: My Father's Place, Long Island

Live Review by Barbara Charone, Sounds, October 1976

NEW ARTISTS consistently better their own past performances. Onstage progression and maturity all too often comes a back seat to the big buck commercialism of ...

Flying Burrito Brothers: Southern Californians Bring Me Down

Live Review by Chas de Whalley, Sounds, October 1976

The Flying Burrito Brothers: Hammersmith Odeon, London ...

Waylon Jennings: Are You Ready For The Country

Review by Mick Farren, New Musical Express, October 1976

Waylon breaks thru' Nashville's blanket defense ...

Willie Nelson: Willie Nelson Live (RCA)**

Review by Chas de Whalley, Sounds, October 1976

WILLIE NELSON has been in country music for the better part of twenty years as a songwriter and performer, while, arm in arm with Waylon ...

Flying Burrito Brothers: Sneeky Pete And The Return Of The Flying Journeymen

Interview by Chas de Whalley, Sounds, October 1976

"ASK THEM abouta da name. They gotta no right to use it!"Don't worry, friends, my esteemed Italian colleague doesn't really speak like that, and his ...

Willie Nelson: The Troublemaker (CBS)****

Review by Chas de Whalley, Sounds, October 1976

HOW ARE we supposed to take this album, eh? ...

John Hartford: Mark Twang (Flying Fish)

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, November 1976

MULTIPLE CAUSE for celebration – the return of the amazing John Hartford, and the start of the long overdue British outlet for Flying Fish. Both ...

Lynn Anderson, Ronnie Prophet, Steve Young: Nashville

Report by Mick Farren, New Musical Express, November 1976

An Englishman's adventures in the city of the rhinestone kings. Mick Farren was that Englishman. ...

Nashville - Part Two

Report by Mick Farren, New Musical Express, November 1976

In which Mick Farren doesn't talk to Chet Atkins, visits Opryland, views the tourist spots from the OAP's bus and, (quiver, quiver....), converses with Dolly ...

Asleep at the Wheel

Profile and Interview by Andy Childs, ZigZag, December 1976

IF, IN A FLIGHT of fancy, you've ever ventured over to this particular neck of the woods you won't be at all surprised to learn ...

Emmylou Harris: Luxury Liner (Warner Bros.)**

Review by Chas de Whalley, Sounds, January 1977

I'M SORRY, but I don't like Emmylou Harris very much. Doubtless you'll recommend me to the Inquisition for a Heresy like that. But I've been ...

Emmylou Harris: Luxury Liner

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, February 1977

A CLASSICALLY CONCEIVED album for one such as myself – two songs by Parsons, one by the Louvin Brothers, a Rodney Crowell, a Mr. Guy ...

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band: Nitty Gritty Dirt Band: Dirt Silver & Gold

Review by Andy Childs, ZigZag, February 1977

THE SEPTEMBER 13th 1975 edition of Billboard Magazine, the American music industry's Bible, carried an interesting and revealing supplement on Colorado – "a growing music ...

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band: Dirt, Silver and Gold (United Artists)****

Review by Chas de Whalley, Sounds, February 1977

PLEASE TELL me, who is going to buy this peach of an album? It's a three record set, a compilation of the Los Angeles' band's ...

Waylon Jennings: Waylon Live

Review by John Morthland, Creem, April 1977

It wasn't until late 1974 that the Waylon Jennings mystique took hold for me. This is partly because to my mind that's when his sound ...

Asleep at the Wheel

Report and Interview by Mick Farren, New Musical Express, April 1977

CAN AN ELEVEN-PIECE WESTERN SWING BAND EVER FIND WEALTH AND PROSPERITY IN THE WORLD OF ROCK'N'ROLL? ...

Asleep at the Wheel: Asleep At The Wheel: Hammersmith Odeon, London

Live Review by Chas de Whalley, Sounds, April 1977

I DON'T think I've ever seen so many ten gallon hats on one stage. Not outside Texas, anyhow. And so many straight-legged jeans and cowboy ...

Poco: Indian Summer (ABC) ***

Review by Chas de Whalley, Sounds, April 1977

I FIRST got into Poco back when Buffalo Springfielders Richie Furay and Jim Messina were still in the band. They cut a live album, called ...

Asleep at the Wheel: The Wheel

Review by Andy Childs, ZigZag, May 1977

THIS ISN'T going to be a very long review, because I want to play the record again before the pubs open. ...

Asleep at the Wheel: Asleep At The Wheel: The Wheel

Review by Chas de Whalley, Sounds, May 1977

THIS IS Asleep At the Wheel's fifth album in seven odd years. It's the one, so they hope, to transform them from a cult country ...

Asleep at the Wheel: Asleep At the Wheel: The Wheel (Capitol)

Review by Max Bell, New Musical Express, May 1977

I'D BEEN beginning to think there wasn't that much happening on the live front until I saw Asleep At The Wheel at Hammersmith last week. ...

Linda Hargrove: The Unfulfilled Career of Linda Hargrove…

Profile by Martin Hawkins, Country Music Review, June 1977

EVER SINCE I last invested my year's savings in a visit to Music City and other musical areas of America, I have been meaning to ...

Red Clay Ramblers: The Red Clay Ramblers: Half Moon, Putney

Live Review by Chas de Whalley, Sounds, July 1977

IN THESE DAYS of unbridled electrical energy, it never ceases to surprise me the drive and excitement that can be generated by a highly ordered ...

The Rumour: Max

Review by Chas de Whalley, Sounds, July 1977

Huckleberry Finn will love this one. Five English guys capture the downhome spirit of America. ...

Asleep at the Wheel, Bob Wills & The Texas Playboys: The Texas Playboys, Asleep at the Wheel: Panther Hall, Fort Worth, Texas

Live Review by John Morthland, Rolling Stone, August 1977

"THIS ONE goes back to 1936," Leon McAuliffe grinned. "Bob told me, 'Leon, just hit a chord and then I'll say something,' and so I ...

Joe Ely: Joe Ely

Review by Chas de Whalley, Sounds, September 1977

HAVE YOU heard of Joe Ely before? Thought not. I certainly haven't. His past history is a total blank as far as I'm concerned. And ...

Augie Meyers and the Texas Re-Cord Company: Music To Make Your Feet Grin

Profile by Martin Hawkins, Country Music Review, October 1977

THIS IS A story about the small independent Texas Re-Cord Company of Bulverde, Texas. ...

Michael Chapman: The Man Who Hated Mornings

Review by Phil Sutcliffe, Sounds, November 1977

MICHAEL CHAPMAN is a ruminative sort of talent. ...

Townes Van Zandt

Interview by Richard Wootton, Omaha Rainbow, December 1977

TOWNES VAN ZANDT is no longer such a well kept secret, known only to a handful of dedicated fans. Thanks to his new manager and ...

Ozark Mountain Daredevils: Don't Look Down

Review by Max Bell, New Musical Express, January 1978

Second Cut is the Lowest ...

Emmylou Harris: Royal Albert Hall, London

Live Review by Barbara Charone, Sounds, February 1978

CONSIDERING the tensions surrounding the start of Emmylou Harris and the Hot Band's current British tour, their SRO concert at the Royal Albert Hall was ...

Elvis Presley, Hank Williams: Death in Hi-Fi or First Tastes of Tombstone

Overview by Nick Tosches, Waxpaper, March 1978

Music deaths are big news nowadays. It seems hardly an ish of Rolling Stone goes by when we aren't treated to a eulogy for a ...

Joe Ely: Honky Tonk Masquerade

Review by Fred Dellar, New Musical Express, March 1978

'T FOR Texas, T for Tennessee' sang Jimmie Rodgers back in '28, cementing the blues alongside country music, thus helping himself to a million-seller. ...

Carlene Carter: Miss Carter Speaks

Interview by Nick Tosches, Waxpaper, June 1978

N.T.: What's Johnny Cash really like? ...

Asleep at the Wheel: Collision Course (Capital)

Review by Max Bell, New Musical Express, August 1978

STRANGE TO relate but not everything that emerges in the new release racks this week will bear the mark of androids in overalls. And disco ...

Carlene Carter, Elizabeth Barraclough: Elizabeth Barraclough: Elizabeth Barraclough; Carlene Carter: Carlene Carter

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1978

BUFFY SAINTE MARIE used to have this song called 'I'm Gonna Be A Country Girl Again', but you won't find Elizabeth Barraclough or Carlene Carter ...

Emmylou Harris: Profile…Best Of Emmylou Harris

Review by Penny Valentine, Melody Maker, September 1978

UNDOUBTEDLY, Emmylou's success has been to make traditional country music acceptable to a rock audience. She has a lot to answer for, and in a ...

Tammy Wynette: Stand By Your Record Producer

Interview by Colin Irwin, Melody Maker, September 1978

Tammy Wynette, over here for a short tour, lectures COLIN IRWIN on how to be an Average Superstar... ...

Joe Ely: Texas Country Rock: Texas Twisters

Overview by Martin Hawkins, Melody Maker, November 1978

THE ECHOES of rock get older; and likewise those consumers who, like me, retain an interest in them – rather than giving in to the ...

Bill Monroe (1979)

Interview by Karl Dallas, Rock's Backpages Audio, 1979

The King of the bluegrass Mandolin discusses his approach to music, the influence of the blues, playing with the likes of Flatt & Scruggs, and gives his view of contemporary bluegrass artists such as the Dillards.

File format: mp3; file size: 9.4meg; Interview length: 10' 16"; sound quality: ***

McGuinn, Clark & Hillman: McGuinn, Clark and Hillman: McGuinn, Clark & Hillman

Review by Nick Kent, New Musical Express, February 1979

IF WATCHING someone you once admired attempting to be inspired is the most pathetic sight imaginable, as some bloke maintained in last week's ish, then ...

McGuinn, Clark & Hillman: McGuinn Clark and Hillman: Flight From The Past

Profile and Interview by Mark Leviton, BAM, March 1979

LOS ANGELES — To examine the fates of original Byrds members Roger McGuinn, Gene Clark, and Chris Hillman as they form a new act for ...

Tanya Tucker: Yet Another Excuse To Print A Picture Of A Young Girl With A Guitar

Interview by Sandy Robertson, Sounds, March 1979

WILL THE ICE remain unbroken? Shucks, these phone interviews are a pain (both for the artist and the journalist). I mean, it's not easy encapsulating ...

Joe Ely: Down On The Drag (MCA)

Review by Simon Frith, Melody Maker, April 1979

THIS TIME last year Joe Ely played the Wembley Country Festival and toured Britain as Merle Haggard's bemused support. I saw him in the Brighton ...

The Eagles: The Long Run (Asylum)

Review by Nick Kent, New Musical Express, September 1979

THE DOMINANT rumour being touted around The Eagles' camp to explain the three year gap between Hotel California and The Long Run was, I recall, that this project was ...

Guy Clark

Interview by Richard Wootton, Omaha Rainbow, Spring 1979

I WAS born in this tiny West Texas town called Honihans in 1940. Honihans was named after some Irishman who found the well there - ...

Jack Clement: 'Everybody Loves A Nut'

Profile and Interview by Martin Hawkins, Country Music People, January 1980

JACK CLEMENT could have written that song about himself. MARTIN HAWKINS investigates some of the reasons why. ...

Flying Burrito Brothers: More Hot Burritos: the Flying Burrito Brothers

Report and Interview by Mark Leviton, BAM, March 1980

LOS ANGELES — If tradition in music is meaningful in any way, it is because performers can emerge and fade, groups can split up and ...

Joe Ely: The Venue, London

Live Review by Fred Dellar, New Musical Express, March 1980

THEY BOP, they hop, they bounce like rampaging 'roos. They sing songs bearing titles as profound as 'She's My Baby, She's My Girl' and 'Do ...

Joe Ely

Report and Interview by Kris Needs, ZigZag, April 1980

SITTING on a curb with a fuming Joe Ely... ...

The Flatlanders, Joe Ely: Joe Ely: Past And Present

Retrospective by Martin Hawkins, Country Music People, May 1980

Texan star JOE ELY is not quite the newcomer to recording that we think. MARTIN HAWKINS reveals the tale of the FLATLANDERS' sessions of 1972 ...

Nashville

Overview by Martin Hawkins, History of Rock, The, 1981

The producers and musicians who made country music a multi-million-dollar industry ...

Rosanne Cash Comes Into Her Own

Interview by Dave Zimmer, BAM, April 1981

COTATI – LONESOME steel guitar moans waver and echo throughout the Inn of the Beginning – a classic Old West watering hole 50 miles due ...

Rodney Crowell: Crowell's Got Cash But He Has His Own Career

Interview by Steven X Rea, Los Angeles Herald Examiner, September 1981

A favorite of Willie and Emmylou, he's a family man with wife Rosanne ...

Country Boogie: Honky Tonks, Hoedowns And The Roots Of Rock

Overview by Martin Hawkins, History of Rock, The, October 1981

IF RHYTHM AND BLUES was a major constituent of rock'n'roll, so too was the influence of country music in the form of country-boogie. Country-boogie was ...

The Legendary Stardust Cowboy: The Tears of a Clown: The Lives and Loves of the Legendary Stardust Cowboy

Profile and Interview by John Morthland, New York Rocker, January 1982

"THIS NEXT one is called 'Arise'. It's a Western song; not a country song, a Western song. Okay, hit it, boys," commands Norman Odam, a/k/a ...

Elvis Costello and the Attractions: Almost Blue (Columbia)

Review by Craig Zeller, Creem, March 1982

I'M REMINDED OF that Honeymooners episode where, in Alice's absence, Ed gives Ralph a hand with the household chores by doing a little ironing. ...

Willie Nelson: Always On My Mind (Columbia)

Review by Geoffrey Himes, Musician, July 1982

JUST WHEN you thought you couldn't bear one more version of Paul Simon's 'Bridge Over Troubled Water', Willie Nelson comes by and makes the song ...

Dolly Parton: In Gloss We Trust: Dolly Parton at the Dominion, London

Live Review by Richard Cook, New Musical Express, April 1983

HOWEVER MUCH YOU take righteous liberal umbrage at the mass of contradictions Dolly Parton presents, you lose. As surely as the lonely waifs and ...

Linda Ronstadt: Performing Is Not My Gift

Report and Interview by Ben Fong-Torres, TV Guide, May 1984

SHE LOOKS SO darling, standing there on a Santa Barbara, Cal., stage in front of Nelson Riddle and his 43-piece orchestra, ready for the first ...

Joe Ely: Hi-Res

Review by Mitchell Cohen, Creem, July 1984

JOE ELY'S Hi-Res has a feverish, jittery seediness, a buzz you can't shake off. Remember the first episode of Cheers, where the guys argued about ...

Nashville Revisited

Report by Cynthia Rose, New Musical Express, August 1984

This summer an 82 year-old former boxer, shoeshine boy and burlesque costumier from Brooklyn died in Los Angeles. His name was Nudie Cohen and he ...

Neil Young

Interview by Jim Sullivan, Boston Globe, The, September 1984

IN 1970, Neil Young went to Nashville during a break in his solo tour and recorded the song 'Are You Ready For The Country?'. He ...

Gram Parsons: We'll Sweep Out The Ashes In The Morning

Retrospective by Don Watson, New Musical Express, April 1985

"Death is a warm cloak. An old friend. I regard death as something that comes up on a roulette wheel every once in a while."Gram ...

Dobie Gray (1985)

Interview by Barney Hoskyns, Rock's Backpages Audio, September 1985

"I never did feel like a soul singer": from his youth in Texas to Nashville success, Dobie Gray talks about his crossover from R&B to country.

File format: mp3; in 2 parts, total file sizes: 43.9mb, total interview length: 47' 54" sound quality: ****

Rosanne Cash: Cash Points

Interview by Richard Cook, Sounds, April 1986

It's payola time for country's latest lone star Rosanne Cash. Richard Cook tries to separate the hit from the myth. ...

Dwight Yoakam: Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc., Etc.

Review by Gavin Martin, New Musical Express, April 1986

IF IT'S careening kick-start country, a whisky wise distillation of old forms you need, come round here. Boisterous fiddle, the pound and pounce of six-string ...

Rosanne Cash: Blues From The Pink Bedroom

Interview by Gavin Martin, New Musical Express, April 1986

ROSANNE CASH'S latest LP Rhythm And Romance lays bare both her turbulent marriage and a lengthy struggle with drug abuse. GAVIN MARTIN meets the woman ...

Dwight Yoakam: Mean Fiddler, London

Live Review by Gavin Martin, New Musical Express, September 1986

AN IMPARTIAL lady friend had been clean bowled over the previous night at Dingwalls. This tall, lean Kentucky hunk may be coot-like beneath his hat ...

Dwight Yoakam: Hillbilly Hipster

Interview by Cynthia Rose, Mail On Sunday, April 1987

DWIGHT YOAKAM was eight years old when he wrote his first song: an American lament patterned after those of 1940s blue mountain balladeers the Stanley ...

Lyle Lovett, Nanci Griffith, Rattlesnake Annie, Ricky Skaggs, Steve Earle: Nashville Cats: Country Music In 1987 - Goldmine Or Shaft?

Report and Interview by Simon Witter, i-D, June 1987

Simon Witter travelled to Nashville to find out if there's any substance to the media'slatest rediscovery. ...

Steve Earle: Highway Patrolman

Interview by Ralph Traitor, Sounds, June 1987

STEVE EARLE is the outlaw who's going to give Bruce Springsteen a run for his money. On the eve of his UK tour and the ...

Joe Ely: Career Heats Up For Joe Ely

Interview by Charles Bermant, Globe and Mail, The, September 1987

WITH ITS OWN hot brand of Texas rock and roll, the Joe Ely Band has transformed the tiny stage of this rural club into a ...

Nanci Griffith: The Acoustic Room, The Mean Fiddler, Harlesden

Live Review by Ken Hunt, Folk Roots, April 1988

THE WORD 'CHANTEUSE' seems to be undergoing one of its periodic journalistic revivals. It's a slightly unusual word, it's French and it was always far ...

Terry Allen: Lubbock (On Everything) (Special Delivery SPT 1007/8)

Review by Ken Hunt, Folk Roots, April 1988

OVER THE LAST month or so, each time you turned on the TV, opened the paper or virtually any magazine that runs to book reviews, ...

Johnny Cash: A Little Farther... Down The Line

Interview by J. Kordosh, Creem, June 1988

ONSTAGE, JOHNNY Cash likes to joke about his daughter Rosanne's recording of 'Tennessee Flat Top Box': "She played it for me and I said, 'That's ...

Randy Travis (1988)

Interview by Mat Snow, Rock's Backpages Audio, June 1988

The First Gentleman of New Country talks about being on the road, his North Carolina roots, the New Country boom, his youthful indiscretions, and the nature of country music.

File format: mp3; file size: 36mb, interview length: 39' 22" sound quality: ***

k.d. lang: Shadowland: The Owen Bradley Sessions (Sire)

Review by Holly Gleason, Musician, July 1988

LISTENING TO Shadowland, k.d. lang's second album, you can't help thinking you've fallen into a time warp, back to when Patsy Cline ruled the radio. ...

Dewey Groom: Longhorn Man

Profile and Interview by Cynthia Rose, Dallas Observer, August 1988

"YOU KNOW HOW overrated this club business is, psychologically," Dewey Groom is saying, shaking his head. "People think it's a good-time job. They think it's ...

Steve Earle: The Country Outlaw Turns Rock Renegade

Interview by Ralph Traitor, Sounds, October 1988

Not only has Steve Earle recently been on the wrong side of the law, but now he's risking his neck further by turning his back ...

Steve Earle: Lonesome Dove: Steve Earle Puts the Celtic into Country

Interview by Chris Bourke, Rip It Up, December 1988

"Ring Steve Earle," said the message. "Area code 615 ..." ...

Chris Hillman, The Desert Rose Band: The Desert Rose Band: Chris Hillman's Hot Burrito #3

Interview by Dave Zimmer, BAM, December 1988

ROCK IS no longer the dirty word it once was in Nashville. But after LA's Desert Rose Band placed four singles on the country charts ...

Steve Earle: A Bad Boy Settles Down

Report and Interview by Holly Gleason, Rolling Stone, January 1989

STEVE EARLE recently released his third album, Copperhead Road, and married his fifth wife, Teresa. Considering that last New Year's Day found him in a ...

Lyle Lovett: Lyle Lovett and His Large Band (MCA/Curb) ****

Review by Holly Gleason, Rolling Stone, February 1989

LYLE LOVETT has always been a little bit schizophrenic. A Nashville musician with big-band leanings, Lovett has somehow managed to gracefully walk the line between ...

k.d. lang: Prairie Fire

Interview by Dave Zimmer, BAM, June 1989

WELCOME TO the Griffith Park Pony Rides. Assorted toddlers, most of them 2- or 3-something, are circling a dusty track, strapped onto tired ponies. Not ...

Lucinda Williams: Happy Woman Blues

Sleevenotes by John Morthland, Smithsonian Folkways, 1990

THE DAUGHTER of an English lit professor, Lucinda Williams was born in Lake Charles, Louisiana, and spent most of her youth moving from college town ...

The Flatlanders: More a Legend Than a Band

Sleevenotes by Colin Escott, Rhino Records, 1990

AS THE FLATLANDERS DROVE TO NASHVILLE IN March 1971 to cut their lone album, Tammy Wynette was sitting atop the country charts with 'Bedtime Story'. ...

Gram Parsons: Gram Cracker

Profile by Tim Riley, Boston Phoenix, The, May 1990

Parsons's Grievous Angel returns ...

Cowboy Junkies, Kris Kristofferson: Kris Kristofferson Meets The Cowboy Junkies: Country Music On The Morning After

Interview by Fred Schruers, Musician, June 1990

KRIS KRISTOFFERSON occupies an unusual place among American songwriters. His songs have been covered by such legends as his inspiration Bob Dylan ('They Killed Him'), ...

Steve Earle: And Justice For All

Interview by Paul Elliott, Sounds, June 1990

Having had a severe brush with the law himself, Steve Earle is well placed to judge the American law. On his new LP, The Hard Way, he ...

Lucinda Williams: Ramblin'

Sleevenotes by John Morthland, Smithsonian Folkways, 1991

WHEN IT WAS first released in 1979, Ramblin' could not have been more out of step. Lucinda Williams, who did indeed have ramblin' on her ...

George Jones, Hank Williams, Lefty Frizzell: Redneck Soul: George Jones and the White Man's Blues

Book Excerpt by Barney Hoskyns, 'From a Whisper to a Scream' (Fontana), 1991

NO ONE IS FONDER of saying that country music is "the white man's blues" than black artists like B.B. King, Etta James and Bobby Womack. ...

Tennessee Ernie Ford: Guilty Pleasures

Retrospective by Tom Graves, Rock & Roll Disc, March 1991

MY MOTHER TELLS the story of a Bob Hope television special that aired in the 1950s. The comedian had just made a crack about ...

Johnny Cash: Old, Gifted And Black

Report and Interview by Steven Wells, New Musical Express, April 1991

A C&W star for longer than most people have been alive, you'd expect JOHNNY CASH to be a down home, redneck good ol'boy. Hell no! ...

Johnny Cash: Pills'n'Thrills And Bellyaches

Profile and Interview by Mark Cooper, Q, June 1991

HITCHING UP HIS blue jeans to give his hands something to do, country music's Greatest Living Legend smothers a cough before the familiar voice offers ...

Garth Brooks: A Life In The Day Of Garth Brooks

Interview by Simon Witter, Sunday Times, 1992

Original version of piece for The Sunday Times Magazine ...

Garth Brooks: Meet Nashville's New Breed Of Generously Stetsoned Crooner

Profile and Interview by Mark Cooper, Q, March 1992

BANDY-LEGGED and pigeon-toed, Garth Brooks has finally taken off his stetson and is staggering around the stage of Atlanta's Omni like a man who's just ...

Willis Alan Ramsey: A Perfect Ending to a 20-year Vacation

Profile and Interview by Tom Graves, Musician, March 1992

AT THE END of Willis Alan Ramsey's only album, a self-titled 1972 Shelter release, the song 'Northeast Texas Woman' fades to studio chatter, and the ...

Lyle Lovett: The Singer Who Argues With God

Profile and Interview by Mark Cooper, Daily Telegraph, March 1992

Lyle Lovett's latest album gives a contemporary twist to the Old Testament, says Mark Cooper ...

Lyle Lovett: Erm…

Profile and Interview by Mark Cooper, Q, May 1992

Confusion and uncertainty are Lyle Lovett's middle names. Is he country? Or is he blues, or gospel, or swing? What the hell, he decides, "They're ...

Johnny Cash: The Man in Blackpool

Report by Mick Houghton, Q, April 1993

JOHN R. CASH is somewhat bemused by questions about Butlin's – or Bognor come to that. He's between sets at Southcoast World (Butlin's, Bognor to ...

Nanci Griffith, Robert Earl Keen: Nanci Griffith: Other Voices, Other Rooms (Elektra); Robert Earl Keen: A Bigger Piece of the Sky (Sugar Hill)

Review by Jason Cohen, Creem, June 1993

THOSE WHO found Nanci Griffith's last two efforts for MCA to be awash in pop-lite production and overblown instrumentation should take Other Voices, Other Rooms ...

Mary Chapin Carpenter

Profile and Interview by Mark Cooper, MOJO, November 1993

A RIOT OF SEQUINS and studded belts, of thick foundation and fringed pastel jackets, of monstrous boots and massive hair, Nashville's old – and new ...

Garth Brooks

Profile and Interview by Robin Eggar, Sunday Times, January 1994

"SHHH." THE admonition echoes around the room, stalling conversation in mid-drawl, beer in mid-swallow. The ensuing hush is equal parts reverence and show-me. ...

Willie Nelson in Stockholm (1994)

Interview by Barney Hoskyns, Rock's Backpages Audio, October 1994

Willie Nelson – on tour in Sweden – on leaving Columbia for Liberty, his tussle with the IRS, Cowboy movies, songwriting and more...

File format: mp3 File size: 30mb Interview length: 32 minutes 43 seconds Sound quality: ****

Willie Nelson: Funny How Time Slips Away

Retrospective and Interview by Bill DeYoung, Goldmine, January 1995

WITH HIS beatific smile and twinkling bright eyes, Willie Nelson looks like the most serene and centered man on the planet. When he's wearing a ...

Linda Ronstadt (1995)

Interview by Barney Hoskyns, Rock's Backpages Audio, February 1995

The First Lady of Counry Rock on a life in music: from Tuscon to LA; the Troubadour scene; hanging out with Jim Morrison and Gram Parsons; exploring standards and Mexican music; singing, production and producers.

File format: mp3; in 2 parts, total file sizes: 145mb, total interview length: 2h 28' 24" sound quality: **

Simon Bonney Proves He Belongs in Country: Songs Reflective, Stark and Sincere

Live Review by Steven R Rosen, Denver Post, May 1995

COUNTRY-AND-WESTERN music and European art songs aren't as strange a combination as you might think. ...

George Jones, Tammy Wynette: Stand By Your Ex: George Jones and Tammy Wynette

Interview by Mark Cooper, MOJO, October 1995

Wait till I get you home...to Splitsville, Tennessee, where George Jones and Tommy Wynette have resided since the classic song D.I.V.O.R.C.E. came true following perhaps ...

George Jones, Tammy Wynette: George Jones & Tammy Wynette: Hammersmith Apollo, London

Live Review by Barney Hoskyns, MOJO, November 1995

LONG AGO, in the days before hats and hi-tech rednecks, country music was a soap opera and George Jones and Tammy Wynette were its Dirty ...

Butch Hancock, The Flatlanders, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Joe Ely, Terry Allen: Lubbock on Everything: The Best Little Neo-Country Town in Texas?

Retrospective and Interview by Richard Gehr, unpublished, 1996

In 1996, Richard Gehr went down to Texas to explore the history and mythology of Buddy Holly’s home town. This was his unpublished report for ...

Steve Earle: Birth, School, Work, Heroin, Coke, Marriage, Heroin, Marriage, Crack, Prison...

Interview by Bill Prince, Q, May 1996

There are eight million stories... and they all happened to Steve Earle. Six weddings, 27 years of drug addiction, 30 days in chokey, one hit ...

George Jones with Tom Carter: I Lived To Tell It All

Book Review by Tom Graves, Washington Post, The, June 1996

I LIVED TO TELL IT ALL, the long-awaited autobiography of country music legend George Jones, has to be one of the bleakest, most disconsolate music ...

Emmylou Harris: The Sweetheart of the Rodeo

Retrospective and Interview by Bill DeYoung, Goldmine, August 1996

SERENDIPITY, WHAT Webster loosely defines as "dumb luck," is an important concept for Emmylou Harris. ...

Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris, Linda Ronstadt: Linda Ronstadt on Emmylou: And Then There Were Two…

Interview by Bill DeYoung, Goldmine, August 1996

CHRIS HILLMAN, who'd introduced Emmylou Harris and Gram Parsons, played matchmaker another time: Backstage at a concert in Texas, he put the newcomer together with ...

Johnny Cash (1996)

Interview by Barney Hoskyns, Rock's Backpages Audio, October 1996

Johnny Cash talks to Barney Hoskyns about his health, his religion, his revival with Rick Rubin, and the myth of the Million Dollar Quartet

File format: mp3; file size: 50.5mb, interview length: 55' 07" sound quality: ****

Carlene Carter live

Live Review by Ben Edmonds, MOJO, November 1996

"I WANNA TELL Y’ALL SOMETHING," Carlene Carter notifies the young country audience that’s braved an outdoor venue on an unseasonably cold and wet September evening. ...

Gillian Welch and David Rawlings (1996)

Interview by Barney Hoskyns, Rock's Backpages Audio, December 1996

The Queen of nouveau bluegrass, Gillian Welch, and her guitar pickin' sidekick David Rawlings, talk about meeting at Berklee, making the fabulous Revival album, living in Nashville and more.

File format: mp3; file size: 33.2meg; Interview length: 38' 18"; sound quality: ***

Glen Campbell: The Glen Campbell Collection (1962-1989)

Sleevenotes by Colin Escott, Razor & Tie Records, 1997

ALTHOUGH GLEN CAMPBELL has always insisted that he's a country boy who sings--not a country singer, he arrived at a time when country music was ...

Whose Alt.Country Is It Anyway?

Essay by Barney Hoskyns, unpublished, 1997

THEY CALL it Alternative Country, a generous umbrella of a category that makes room for acts as different as Steve Earle, Son Volt and Slobberbone; ...

Townes Van Zandt: Keeping Quiet For The Sake Of A Song: Townes Van Zandt 1944-1997

Obituary by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, January 1997

OTHER MUSICIANS revered Texan song writer Townes Van Zandt who has died of a heart attack aged 52, but he made real efforts, helped by ...

Gillian Welch: As Real And As Raw As It Gets

Profile and Interview by Mark Cooper, Independent, The, June 1997

Mark Cooper samples Gillian Welch's alternative bluegrass ...

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band: Uncle Charlie And His Dog Teddy

Retrospective and Interview by Johnny Black, MOJO, August 1997

AFTER A bunch of friends, including a young Jackson Browne, figured that singing Bill Monroe and Mississippi John Hurt songs in the back of McCabe's ...

Chris Hillman: This Byrd Has Flown: Chris Hillman comes to the Coach House

Report and Interview by Bill Wasserzieher, OC Weekly, August 1997

ROCK & ROLL HALL of Famer Chris Hillman has played in bands with religious proselytizers, trust-fund dopers and even a matricidal drummer who heard voices ...

Shania Twain: Come On Over***

Review by Chuck Eddy, Rolling Stone, December 1997

THE FIRST thing you notice about Shania Twain's Come On Over, once you get past her pretty pictures on the cover, is how the titles ...

Don Everly, The Everly Brothers: An Everly Brother In Winter: Walkin' Right Back with Don Everly

Retrospective and Interview by Colin Escott, 'Tattoed on their Tongues' (Schirmer), 1998

WHEN ROCK 'N' ROLL ARRIVED, it triggered a three-alarm anxiety attack in Nashville. Many hoped that they would wake up one morning to find it ...

Steve Earle's Politics and Prose

Report and Interview by Geoffrey Himes, Washington Post, The, February 1998

IT WAS the kind of night that could only take place in Nashville, a town with as many songwriters as Washington has bureaucrats. ...

Tammy Wynette: First Lady Of Country

Obituary by Fred Dellar, MOJO, June 1998

TAMMY always stood by her fans. Often at the end of a gig, she'd just sit around signing autographs. Once, when her life was threatened, ...

Gram Parsons: The Good Ol’ Boy

Retrospective by Barney Hoskyns, MOJO, July 1998

ON A WARM fall night in the tie-dyed rock’n’roll town of Woodstock, with the maple leaves turning to gold and purple on the mountains that ...

Linda Ronstadt: Everlasting Linda

Profile and Interview by Debbie Kruger, Weekend Australian, July 1998

IT'S SUMMER IN TUCSON, around 38° C, and Linda Ronstadt is sanguine about the waterlilies sprouting in her pond. The rest of the grounds are ...

Willie Nelson: The Barbican, London

Live Review by Gavin Martin, Uncut, August 1998

THE GREAT FEAR of seeing a hero in their twilight years is that their powers will have deserted them and they'll be unable to reach, ...

Ralph Stanley: Back to Clinch Mountain: Ralph Stanley

Report and Interview by Geoffrey Himes, Country Music, September 1998

"THREE GROUPS shaped bluegrass music," Ricky Skaggs told me recently, "Bill Monroe and the Blue Grass Boys, the Stanley Brothers, and Flatt & Scruggs. Everyone ...

Waylon Jennings: Honky Tonk Heroes

Retrospective by Gavin Martin, Uncut, September 1998

FOR WAYLON Jennings – born into a dirt poor cotton-picking West Texas family – the wanderlust began as far back as he could remember. ...

Willie Nelson: The Lone Star Spirit of Willie Nelson

Profile and Interview by Chris Smith, Performing Songwriter, December 1998

THERE WAS, of course, Texas music before Willie. Problem was, nobody outside of Texas heard it. The eclectic styles growing from lone star roots before ...

Butch Hancock, The Flatlanders, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Joe Ely: Lubbock on Everything: The Evocation of Place in Popular Music (A West Texas Example)

Essay by Blake Gumprecht, Journal of Cultural Geography, Fall 1998

Landscape into Art THE ROLE OF LANDSCAPE and the importance of place in literature, poetry, the visual arts, even cinema and television, is well established ...

Townes Van Zandt: A Gentleman and a Shaman: The Last Days and Sad Death of Townes Van Zandt

Retrospective by Matt Hanks, No Depression, January 1999

IF YOU CAN see through the hangover haze and black-eyed pea tradition that ties one First Day to another, January 1st can serve as a ...

Steve Earle: Rebel With A Cause

Interview by Graham Reid, New Zealand Herald, The, February 1999

Country rock rebel Steve Earle has turned his back on cocaine and booze and talks to Graham Reid about politics and music ...

George Jones

Guide by Fred Dellar, MOJO, June 1999

Every month we navigate the high-water marks, rapids and stagnant ponds of a prolific artist’s output, so you don’t have to. We continue with... ...

Deep River: The Bounty of Alan Lomax

Retrospective by Ted Drozdowski, Boston Phoenix, The, June 1999

THE CD STARTS with a banjo picker burning on a hoedown called 'Cripple Creek,' progresses along a chain of mountain songs to 'Arkansas Traveler,' and ...

The Dixie Chicks: Dixie Chicks

Interview by Dorian Lynskey, Q, July 1999

Good heavens! It's the bottle-blonde, country Corrs. ...

Gram Parsons: The Long Way Around: Gram Parsons

Retrospective and Interview by Holly George-Warren, No Depression, July 1999

I keep my love for variations, even tho I've some sort of "rep" for starting what (I think) has turned out t'be pretty much of ...

Townes Van Zandt: A Far Cry From Dead

Review by Matt Hanks, No Depression, July 1999

LIKE DOCK BOGGS, Townes Van Zandt was obsessed with death. Both men were shadowed by their own mortality, obsessing over it and collapsing under ...

Townes Van Zandt: A Far Cry From Dead

Review by Chris Smith, Performing Songwriter, July 1999

STEVE EARLE ONCE gushed, "Townes Van Zandt is the best songwriter in the world, and I'd stand on Bob Dylan's coffee table in my boots ...

Tammy Wynette: The Mad Life And Crazy Death of Tammy Wynette

Overview by Lucy O'Brien, Q, August 1999

Burt Reynolds nearly died in her bath, George Jones escaped on her lawn-mower, and her second husband traded pictures of her in the nuddy. She ...

Alison Krauss, Me'Shell Ndegeocello: Sounds of Heartache: Alison Krauss and Me'Shell Ndegeocello

Essay by Geoffrey Himes, Baltimore City Paper, August 1999

IT WOULD BE hard to think of two female singers more different than Alison Krauss and Me'Shell Ndegeocello. Krauss, a straight European-American from the Midwestern ...

Kim Richey: Her Country: Kim Richey's Nashville fusion

Interview by Ted Drozdowski, Boston Phoenix, The, August 1999

THERE SEEM TO BE four kinds of country music these days. There's the pop stuff, a mix of up-tempo numbers and sugary ballads plied by ...

Merle Haggard: For The Record: The Hag Tells It Like It Is

Interview by Geoffrey Himes, Country Music, November 1999

LAST APRIL Merle Haggard turned 62, well past the age when most men slow down and mellow out. The Hag, however, is busier and ornerier ...

Dolly Parton

Interview by j. poet, Stereotype, 2000

THE MUSIC BUSINESS IS FULL OF ironies and insane contradictions, and Dolly Parton – a savvy businesswoman as well as an all-round entertainer – is ...

The Byrds, Flying Burrito Brothers, Gram Parsons: Gram Parsons, Track by Track

Sleevenotes by Bud Scoppa, Sacred Hearts and Fallen Angels (Rhino), September 2000

The International Submarine Band: Safe at Home ...

Patsy Cline: 25 All-Time Greatest Recordings: The 4-Star Years (Varese Sarabande)

Sleevenotes by Colin Escott, Varese Sarabande, September 2000

AROUND 2:00 PM on Tuesday March 5, 1963, a Piper Comanche light airplane left Kansas City bound for Nashville. There were three passengers and a ...

Emmylou Harris: Ghosts and Angels

Interview by Phil Sutcliffe, MOJO, December 2000

The spectres of a war hero father and a doomed country troubador haunt her music. Emmylou Harris tells Phil Sutcliffe why she still hasn't found ...

Bobby Bare: The Singles 1959-1969

Sleevenotes by Colin Escott, BMG International, 2001

AN OUTLAW before his time, a folk singer who never played a coffee house, a rock 'n' roller who gave away his biggest hit. Bobby ...

Roy Acuff

Book Excerpt by Phil Hardy, Dave Laing, 'Faber Companion to 20th Century Popular Music', 2001

b. 15 September 1903, Maynardville, Tennessee, USA, d. 23 November 1992, Nashville, Tennessee ...

The Carter Family: In The Shadow Of Clinch Mountain (Bear Family Records)

Review by Colin Escott, Journal of Country Music, The, 2001

WITH ENOUGH PATIENCE and old catalogs, you could probably confirm that at least some Carter Family recordings have been available for almost the entire span ...

The Eagles

Book Excerpt by Dave Laing, Phil Hardy, 'The Faber Companion to 20th C. Popular Music', 2001

Don Henley, b. 22 July 1946, Linden, Texas, USA; Glenn Frey, b. 6 November 1946, Detroit, Michigan; Bernie Leadon, b. 19 July 1947, Minneapolis, Minnesota ...

Willie Nelson: Expecting the Unexpected

Profile and Interview by Hank Bordowitz, Gallery, March 2001

WILLIE NELSON studies martial arts. He has honed his skills as a karateka in various styles for around 40 years now. When you ...

Gram Parsons: Sacred Hearts And Fallen Angels (Rhino)

Review by John Morthland, No Depression, May 2001

EXCEPT FOR A brief period in the early '80s, when I now believe I was trying so hard I put a clothespin over my crap ...

Merle Haggard: Real Country music may be dead, but its last true cowboy, Merle Haggard, carries on the original sound

Profile and Interview by Joel Selvin, San Francisco Chronicle, June 2001

COUNTRY MUSIC is over. There are lots of rock singers wearing cowboy hats these days, but genuine country music is all but dead and gone. ...

Chet Atkins: Mr Nashville

Obituary by Fred Dellar, MOJO, September 2001

HE WASN'T the most accomplished guitarist in country music. There were those in Nashville who could fashion half a dozen great licks in the time ...

Earl Scruggs: Rich Pickings

Profile and Interview by Angus Batey, MOJO, November 2001

Lightning banjo picker Earl Scruggs was there at the birth of bluegrass. Over half a century later he's back with a new album and a ...

George Jones: The Rock: Stone Cold Country 2001 (Bandit)

Review by John Morthland, No Depression, November 2001

IN MOST WAYS, this is a textbook follow-up to George Jones' eerie, surprisingly substantial 1999 album Cold Hard Truth – same basic song ideas only ...

Glen Campbell, Jimmy Webb: Glen Campbell: 'Wichita Lineman'

Retrospective by Johnny Black, Blender, November 2001

Vital statistics 

on Glen Campbell's 'Wichita Lineman' ...

Ooooh Las Vegas! 37 Stories, and It's All Out There…

Essay by Holly Gleason, Rock's Backpages, November 2001

Country music publicist Holly Gleason spends a night in Sin City – and comes to terms with the celebrity frenzy that is pop's new American ...

Steve Earle: Highway Blues

Retrospective by Adam Sweeting, Uncut, April 2002

HOW STEVE EARLE'S GUITAR TOWN BROUGHT A NEW ATTITUDE TO NASHVILLE. ...

Willie Nelson’s Straight Story

Report and Interview by Peter Murphy, Hot Press, July 2002

IN DAVID LYNCH’S The Straight Story, the septuagenarian Alvin Straight showed his steel when the twin freak mechanics the Olsens tried fleecing him for repairs ...

Alison Krauss: Let Me Touch You For A While: Alison Krauss Creates Intimacy Amongst the Disenfranchised

Essay by Holly Gleason, Rock's Backpages, September 2002

THERE IT WAS ONE DAY – propped against my doorway in West Hollywood – a plain brown cardboard box like so many others. Anonymous. Almost ...

The Carter Family: Into The Valley

Retrospective by Sylvie Simmons, MOJO, November 2002

FIRST KILL YOUR HOG. SKIN IT, singe off the hairs and leave the hide to soften. Tug it over a round frame, whittle out a ...

Shania Twain: Up! Is A Direction: Shania Twain’s New CD(s)

Review by Rick McGrath, Culture Court, December 2002

More Of The Same Old, But I Give It A 10 For Marketing Moxie, Dick! ...

Johnny Cash: The Man Comes Around (American Recordings)

Review by Sylvie Simmons, MOJO, December 2002

WEIGHTED DOWN by the difficult circumstances behind its recording – illness, hospitalisations, two bouts of pneumonia this past year alone, speculation that the increasingly fragile ...

The Flatlanders: Once & Again

Interview by Geoffrey Himes, Harp, Summer 2002

After more than 30 years since their first recorded project together, the Flatlanders have come together again to record Now Again. Forward all 'thank you' ...

Keith Urban

Interview by Joe Matera, Mixdown, 2003

GOLDEN ROAD, the second solo album from Keith Urban, symbolizes the life and musical journey that has taken him from the Australian farm town of ...

Johnny Cash: Outta My Way

Retrospective and Interview by Sylvie Simmons, MOJO, January 2003

Thirty-five years ago, ex-felon Johnny Cash was invited to perform in two of America's toughest prisons – one of which he was no stranger to ...

Shania Twain

Interview by Adrian Deevoy, Blender, April 2003

She was singing in bars at age eight. She lived for Supertramp. And she married the world's most successful hair-metal producer. So how on Earth ...

Townes Van Zandt: Wanderin' Star

Retrospective by Sylvie Simmons, MOJO, April 2003

What do you do when you're really down? Listen to Townes Van Zandt Sylvie Simmons charts the artistic triumphs and personal disasters of sadness's most ...

June Carter Cash 1929-2003

Obituary by Phast Phreddie Patterson, Rock's Backpages, May 2003

COUNTRY SINGER June Carter Cash (73) died in Nashville on May 15 of complications from heart surgery. She was the daughter of country legend ...

Brooks & Dunn: The Long Road Home: Brooks & Dunn Risk Backlash With a Great Rock Album

Review by Carol Cooper, Village Voice, August 2003

IN THE RURAL east Texas graveyard where my father and his parents are buried, just a stone's throw from a black church built on land ...

The Dixie Chicks: Dixie Chicks: Apollo, Manchester

Live Review by Nick Hasted, Independent, The, September 2003

DISSENT STILL finds its focus in pop, more than any other art form. But there can have been few less likely standard-bearers for this radical ...

The Dixie Chicks: Weapons Of Mass Destruction

Interview by Andria Lisle, MOJO, October 2003

When they criticised President Bush's war, the Dixie Chicks went from being new country darlings to enemies of the state. Now they’re unlikely keepers of ...

Johnny Cash: The Mantra In Black: Ten Reasons Why Johnny Cash Always Matters

Comment by Gary Pig Gold, earcandymag.com, October 2003

1. LUTHER PLAYED THE BOOGIE Without a red hot and blue band to back it all the way up, even a Man in Black's powers ...

Harlan Howard: Legends of Songwriting: Harlan Howard

Profile and Interview by Bill DeMain, Performing Songwriter, January 2004

THE TYPICAL songwriter who rolls into Nashville is an unknown hopeful with an acoustic guitar and a notebook full of half-finished songs and titles. When ...

Dolly Parton: Mother's Pride: Various: Just Because I'm A Woman: Songs Of Dolly Parton ****

Review and Interview by Phil Sutcliffe, MOJO, January 2004

A dozen brilliant women with a stirring reminder that the beloved boob flaunter and wacky wig wearer is a truly great songwriter. ...

The Beat Farmers: The Beat Goes on

Retrospective and Interview by Fred Mills, Harp, April 2004

It was a small but ultimately influential early ’80s scene: the back-to-roots movement spearheaded by the Blasters, Rank and File, Jason and the Scorchers, Long ...

Steve Earle Gives New Meaning To The Expression 'Lifetime Achievement'

Interview by Toby Manning, Word, The, May 2004

MARRIED SIX TIMES TO FIVE DIFFERENT WOMEN, HE'S ENDURED THE JUNKIE'S LIFE, DONE TIME AND LIVED TO TELL. NOW A CHANGED CHARACTER, HIGH PROFILE CAMPAIGNER ...

Loretta Lynn: Van Lear Rose

Review by Andria Lisle, MOJO, June 2004

The Coal Miner's Daughter becomes a country music queen – with a little help from one of The White Stripes. ...

Loretta Lynn, The White Stripes: Jack White and Loretta Lynn: Deconstructing Jack

Comment by Dave Marsh, Harp, July 2004

AT THAT POINT, after one and a half listenings, I concluded that White had heard all the Loretta Lynn records ever made and liked everything ...

Johnny Paycheck: The Little Darlin' Sound Of Johnny Paycheck: The Beginning (Koch)

Review by John Morthland, No Depression, July 2004

SOMETIMES I THINK the Johnny Paycheck cultists are so enamoured of the sensational goth of stuff like '(Pardon Me) I've Got Someone To Kill' and ...

Gram Parsons: Sacred Hearts & Fallen Angels (Rhino)

Review by Terry Staunton, Record Collector, August 2004

WITH A BODY OF WORK scattered over a wide selection of labels, Parsons fans had until now been faced with a musical Easter egg hunt ...

Gillian Welch and David Rawlings: Shepherds Bush Empire, London

Live Review by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, August 2004

"WE LOVE PLAYING HERE," Gillian Welch told us more than once, and since she and her musical soulmate David Rawlings were on for more than ...

The Dillards: Pickin’ and Fiddlin’/Wheatstraw Suite/Copperfields

Review by Barney Hoskyns, Uncut, September 2004

WHEN DOUGLAS and Rodney Dillard’s quartet hit Los Angeles in 1963 they blew everyone’s minds. Playing bluegrass with fuck-you rock’n’roll attitude, they wasted the competition ...

Uncle Dave Macon: Keep My Skillet Good And Greasy (Bear Family)

Review by Tony Russell, Maverick, September 2004

UNCLE DAVE MACON was the first real star of country music. True, Fiddlin' John Carson got on disc first: Uncle Dave made his debut recording ...

Johnny Cash's Concept Albums

Retrospective by Phil Sutcliffe, MOJO, October 2004

THEY WERE "CONCEPTS" all right, but that didn't make them the product of cool, analytical thinking. Back in the early '60s, Johnny Cash was wrestling ...

Gillian Welch finds new audience with old-time Americana music

Interview by Graham Reid, New Zealand Herald, The, October 2004

FOR SOMEONE WHOSE stark songs sound like they have come from the impoverished rural underbelly of Depression-era America, Gillian Welch seems as lively as a ...

Dwight Yoakam, Randy Travis: Dwight Yoakam: The Very Best Of; Randy Travis: The Very Best Of

Review by Terry Staunton, Record Collector, November 2004

ROUTE 88 WAS an ambitious cross-label campaign to establish several country stars in the UK, with Yoakam and Travis seen by many as the twin ...

Alison Krauss and Union Station: Lonely Runs Both Ways

Review by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, November 2004

THIS IS KRAUSS'S first studio album for three years, though in the meantime she's delivered a bestselling live album, won three Grammy awards, and made ...

Dolly Parton (2005)

Interview by Gavin Martin, Rock's Backpages Audio, 2005

Movies, fasting, fame and faith, plastic surgery, marriage, 9/11 and on being a gay icon: Dolly says more in twenty minutes than most do in two hours.

File format: mp3; file size: 22.1mb; Interview length: 24' 08"; sound quality: ****

Willie Nelson: Shepherd's Bush Empire, London

Live Review by Andrew Mueller, Independent, The, April 2005

AT THIS LATE stage, attending a Willie Nelson concert is more a gesture of pilgrimage than anything else. Nelson, now 71, with a ponytail that ...

Merle Haggard: Branded Man: Merle Haggard Brings The Bakersfield Sounds East With Dylan

Report and Interview by Ted Drozdowski, Boston Phoenix, The, April 2005

WHEN BOB DYLAN CALLS, other musicians listen. Even when they're icons and gifted songwriters in their own right. ...

Charlie Poole: You Ain't Talkin' To Me: Charlie Poole And The Roots Of Country Music

Review by Tony Russell, Maverick, May 2005

THE PAST IS another country music: they do things differently there. In a rural school hall, dancers execute their circle-lefts and allemands, the fire in ...

David Allan Coe

Sleevenotes by Colin Escott, Hackmart/Shout Factory! Records, May 2005

"I ALWAYS FIGURED David's stories were about ninety-two percent bullshit, but it made for good promotion," said record producer Shelby Singleton...who knew the value of ...

Lucinda Williams: Southern Comfort

Interview by Jaan Uhelszki, Harp, May 2005

LUCINDA WILLIAMS is a splendid mess, a charming and bruised beauty. ...

Elvis Costello, Emmylou Harris: Elvis Costello with Emmylou Harris: SummerStage, Central Park, NYC

Live Review by Mac Randall, New York Daily News, July 2005

"PITY ABOUT IT BEING so cold and all," Elvis Costello cracked toward the beginning of his Central Park SummerStage concert last night. ...

Chip Taylor: Lock 17, London ****

Live Review by Adam Sweeting, Guardian, The, July 2005

EVEN BEFORE he met Carrie Rodriguez, Chip Taylor's life had the authentic ring of fiction about it. ...

Neil Young (2005)

Interview by Bud Scoppa, Rock's Backpages Audio, August 2005

Mr. Young on the Prairie Wind album; his aneurysm and surgery; the great Spooner Oldham; his archive project; and the Heart of Gold movie.

File format: mp3; file size: 46.6mb, interview length: 50' 55" sound quality: ****

Dolly Parton: The Essential Dolly Parton

Review by Terry Staunton, Record Collector, December 2005

DON'T BE FOOLED by the high hair, long nails or curvy torso. Dolly Parton may appear, on the surface, to be a prairie poppet moulded ...

Rosanne Cash's Cadillac

Interview by Stephen Dalton, Times, The, January 2006

ROSANNE CASH has already been to church by the time we meet for breakfast. As dawn broke on this wintry Parisian morning, the singer-songwriter slipped ...

Johnny Cash: Cash Upfront

Comment by Andrew Mueller, Guardian, The, January 2006

WALK THE LINE, James Mangold's cinematic telling of the early life of Johnny Cash, takes its title from one of its subject's best-known songs. ...

Kris Kristofferson

Interview by Rob Hughes, Uncut, May 2006

KRIS KRISTOFFERSON is tough to nail. Uncut first catches him, fleetingly, en route to the airport at his home in Maui. ...

Emmylou Harris

Interview by Jaan Uhelszki, Harp, June 2006

IN MORE politically incorrect times there was an ad campaign that featured famous women wrapped in full-length Russian mink coats – people like Elizabeth Taylor, ...

The Dixie Chicks: Dixie Chicks: How The Chicks Survived Their Scrap With Bush

Interview by Adam Sweeting, Telegraph, June 2006

Adam Sweeting assesses how the Dixie Chicks have weathered a political storm ...

The Dixie Chicks: Dixie Chicks: 'We Had A Song At No 1. The Next Day It Was At No 70'

Interview by Caroline Sullivan, Guardian, The, June 2006

NATALIE MAINES has a little cluster of black teardrops tattooed on her lower leg, trickling from her ankle down to her foot. Dixie Chicks' poised ...

Johnny Cash: American V

Review by Stephen Dalton, Times, The, July 2006

MORE THAN THREE YEARS after his death, the Man In Black is still enjoying the kind of final-act career resurgence that artists half his age ...

Bobbie Gentry: Mystery Girl

Retrospective by Holly George-Warren, Duke University Press, 2007

SHE'S BEEN called the J.D. Salinger of rock & roll. Mississippi-born singer/songwriter/guitarist/producer Bobbie Gentry is every bit as mysterious as the steamy, Delta-flavored story-song she ...

NRBQ's Big Al Anderson (2007)

Interview by Joel Selvin, Selvin On The City, KSAN 107.7, 2007

Big Al takes us through life post-NRBQ, becoming songwriter to the Nashville Hat Act Stars, and looks back to the tough days on the road with NRBQ.

File format: mp3 File size: 33.5mb Interview length: 36' 25"; Sound quality: *****

Rosanne Cash

Interview by Andrew Purcell, Sunday Herald (Scotland), January 2007

JOHNNY CASH lives with his daughter. He's in the set of her jaw, the power of her voice, and he stares down proudly from every ...

Guy Clark, Joe Ely, John Hiatt, Lyle Lovett: Guy Clark/Joe Ely /John Hiatt/Lyle Lovett: State Theatre, Cleveland

Live Review by Holly Gleason, No Depression, May 2007

YOU HAVE TO start at the end — where they paid respects to Townes Van Zandt, the songwriter/compadre who captured the essence of life after ...

Buck Owens: The Warner Bros. Recordings (Rhino Handmade)

Review by John Morthland, No Depression, July 2007

BUCK WAS ALWAYS the first to put down his Warners output, but you almost have to hear it all in one place to comprehend how ...

Kathy Mattea: Station Inn, Nashville

Live Review by Holly Gleason, Harp, March 2008

IT'S AMAZING how expansive Kathy Mattea's old leaves and fall rainwater alto can be. With just a few acoustic guitar notes cascading around her on ...

k.d. lang: kd lang: Kravis Center, West Palm Beach, FL

Live Review by Holly Gleason, Harp, March 2008

KD LANG WALKED onstage, guitar on her back and glided effortlessly into 'Upstream', a song about the nature of life, the struggle of human nature ...

Dolly Parton: Warmth, Wonder and Wisdom: Dolly Parton, O2 Arena, London

Live Review by Jude Rogers, New Statesman, July 2008

The superstar country singer proves her worth as a feminist icon. ...

Johnny Cash: Johnny Cash at Folsom Prison (Legacy Edition)

Review by Mark Kemp, Paste, October 2008

IN THE DOCUMENTARY included with this new edition of Johnny Cash at Folsom Prison, daughter Rosanne shatters the mythology surrounding her dad, gently bringing him ...

The Master: Reggie Young

Profile by Barney Hoskyns, Uncut Legends, December 2008

REGGIE YOUNG is a southern institution: the session guitarist's session guitarist. His inimitable licks and fills, at once clipped and fluid, have graced a zillion ...

Jessica Simpson: Gone Country: On Jessica Simpson's Nashville Conversion

Comment by Mark Kemp, Texas Music, January 2009

ASIDE FROM HIP-HOP, country music is the most wildly popular musical style people love to hate. The Bottle Rockets once wrote a song about a ...

Merle Haggard Stands Tall

Interview by Joel Selvin, San Francisco Chronicle, March 2009

AS LONG AS people speak of country music, the music of Merle Haggard will live. As his career nears the half-century mark, Haggard's imprint is ...

Another Look at the Nashville Skyline

Report by Bill Wasserzieher, Rock's Backpages, June 2009

NASHVILLE IS a town of serene churches and raucous honky tonks. ...

Lyle Lovett

Retrospective and Interview by David Burke, R2/Rock'n'Reel, November 2009

DAMN THAT Lyle Lovett, he sure is one elegant gent. While this R2 writer, in a Prada or Armani suit, would look plain guilty, Lovett ...

Rosanne Cash

Retrospective and Interview by David Burke, R2/Rock'n'Reel, November 2009

THERE COMES A time in every young man or woman's life when dad mounts the pulpit and delivers a homily on the kind of music ...

James Hand: The Ballad of James Hand

Profile and Interview by Holly George-Warren, Texas Music, Fall 2009

"When I turned 13 I had a honky-tonk bandAnd now I guess I still doThere's a lot I've seen that I don't understandBut I'll tell ...

Mickey Newbury: An American Triology

Review by Jim Irvin, MOJO, March 2010

He was the hottest songwriter in town. But when he made his own records, the world wasn't ready for songs of utter despair accompanied by ...

Brenda Lee: Brenda Lee Rocks

Sleevenotes by Todd Everett, Bear Family Records, 2011

PAT BOONE, WHO GOT HIS START before rock and roll was invented, remarked in 2008 that he had issues with the fact that he hadn't ...

Mickey Newbury: Guitars, Boats And Fairways: Mickey Newbury and Friends on Old Hickory Lake

Sleevenotes by Chris Campion, Saint Cecilia Knows Records, 2011

IT LOOKS, FROM ABOVE, like a snake arching through the brush. A series of long blind curves that begins at Hendersonville, the small community formed ...

Lady Antebellum: Grammys 2011: Why can't Lady Antebellum find success in the UK?

Report by Paul Lester, Guardian, The, February 2011

COUNTRY-POP TRIO Lady Antebellum were The King's Speech of last night's Grammys, winning six awards (compared to Firth and Co's seven at the Batfas), including ...

Steve Earle: Alive and Kicking: Steve Earle

Profile and Interview by David Burke, R2/Rock'n'Reel, May 2011

STEVE EARLE IS, as his fellow Americans are wont to say, in a good place. "I'm pretty happy. I've got a new little boy, a ...

Steve Martin (2011)

Interview by Andrew Purcell, Rock's Backpages Audio, May 2011

The comedian/bluegrass picker Steve Martin talks about banjos, learning to play, his long association with the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and more.

File format: mp3; file size: 27.4mb, interview length: 29' 58" sound quality: *****

Jimmie Dale Gilmore and the Wronglers: Beachland Ballroom, Cleveland

Live Review by Holly Gleason, nodepression.com, June 2011

THEY CALL IT Heirloom Music, going so far as to make it the title of their first collaborative recording; but for Jimmie Dale Gilmore and ...

Dolly Parton: The Liberty Belle: Dolly Parton Speaks

Interview by Jude Rogers, Quietus, The, August 2011

Ever the showbiz professional, Dolly Parton leads Jude Rogers a merry dance during her allotted 20 minutes of chat about partners, Gaga, sexuality, The Lord ...

Hank Williams: On The Lost Highway: Hank Williams

Retrospective by Mark Mordue, Australian, The, October 2011

DAMNED cold. An ice storm over Nashville has closed down flights across the state of Tennessee. ...

Alison Krauss: Flight Plan

Interview by David Burke, R2/Rock'n'Reel, November 2011

IF I WERE TO tell you that Alison Krauss has won more Grammy Awards than any other female artist, and is third on the all-time ...

Taylor Swift: Madison Square Garden, November 22nd, 2011

Live Review by Iman Lababedi, RockNYC, November 2011

STANDING ON A PLATFORM in the middle of the Arena, Taylor Swift looked genuinely amazed. A young girl in the cheap seats randomly began to ...

Gillian Welch: Air Miles: A Transatlantic Conversation with Gillian Welch and Dave Rawlings

Report and Interview by David Burke, R2/Rock'n'Reel, Fall 2011

MOBILE PHONES, don't you just hate them? I know that to most of the Earth's populace they're as essential as a limb these days, but ...

Johnny Cash: Out Of The Blue and Into The Black: Johnny Cash

Retrospective by Barney Hoskyns, MOJO, April 2012

IT'S NOT EXACTLY boom-chicka-boom, but the twangy guitar part that kicks off Johnny Cash's 1971 album Man In Black is the same minimal single-string picking ...

Doc Watson, 1923-2012

Obituary by Tony Russell, Guardian, The, May 2012

FOR ALMOST 50 YEARS, Doc Watson, who has died aged 89, was the most illustrious name in traditional American folk music. A superb, original guitarist ...

Rodney Crowell's Melodic Literacy

Interview by Charles Bermant, Rock's Backpages, August 2012

RODNEY CROWELL, who turns 62 on August 7, has been on our radar since the 1970s, when he was the freshest horse in Emmylou Harris' ...

Emmylou Harris (2012)

Interview by Barney Hoskyns, Rock's Backpages Audio, December 2012

Ms Harris talks about her latest album (a collaboration with old associate Rodney Crowell) Old Yellow Moon; looks at how she fits into the current country/folk/Americana scene, and looks back at length at her early years and her work with the legendary Gram Parsons.

File format: mp3; file size: 25.5mb, interview length: 55' 45" sound quality: * (phoner)

Rosanne Cash: Union Chapel, London

Live Review by Stephen Dalton, Times, The, December 2012

A HOST OF FACTORS, including brain surgery, have conspired to keep Rosanne Cash away from London for the last six years. Returning to a full ...

Various Artists: Behind Closed Doors (Kent)

Review by Mike Atherton, Echoes, 2013

AARON NEVILLE is a remarkable bloke. Muscular and tattooed, he looks like a bodybuilder or a bouncer, until he opens his mouth and sings: the ...

Emmylou Harris, Gram Parsons: Heartaches and Hangovers: Gram Parsons' GP

Retrospective and Interview by Barney Hoskyns, MOJO, March 2013

IT IS A FINE irony of her long career as the Queen of Country Rock that, on the night when Gram Parsons stopped by to ...

The Eagles: Where Eagles Dared: California's Signature Rock Band Comes to London

Report by Barney Hoskyns, Rock's Backpages, April 2013

Messrs. Schmit, Henley, Frey and Walsh (photo: Debbie Kruger) WELCOME TO the Hotel Connaught, the plush old Mayfair institution where Glenn Frey, Don Henley, Joe Walsh ...

Kris Kristofferson

Interview by David Burke, R2/Rock'n'Reel, September 2013

HUMILITY can be a deceptive character trait. Those who profess it are not always quite as humble as they seem. Like Friedrich Nietzsche wrote, "He ...

Johnny Horton

Retrospective by David Burke, Vintage Rock, 2014

THE ANNALS OF rock 'n' roll are littered with tragic narratives of lives cut short in their prime, whether it be Eddie Cochran's death in ...

back to LIBRARY

COPYRIGHT NOTICE