Joe Hill's Last Will John McCutcheon
Appalsongs

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

John Mccutcheon is at it again.  This is his 37th album, and the first in 
decades to be solely devoted to the music of the Swedish immigrant who penned 
songs meant to "fan the flames of discontent" in the early US labor 
movement.  The six-time Grammy nominee's first track is about Casey Jones, a 
well-known union scab, who crossed every working class picket line he could. There's 
a Woodie Guthrie fixation popping out of John Mccutcheon, who began life as 
a poet.  Instead of pointing fingers at a particular flaw in culture the 
songs tear down the entire decrepit thing, declaring that all is vanity, 
hypocrisy and phony fox news propaganda.  By the way, I dreamed I saw Joe Hill 
and Utah Phillips last night. 

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Nothing But The Silence Striking Matches
IRS Nashville

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

Striking matches is the guitar-wielding duo of Sarah Zimmerman and Justin 
Davis, both sharing vocal duties.  They sing touchingly about their lessons 
in romance--the giving, taking and leaving.  They don't know how they wrote 
their songs--try to sit down and write like that.  I dare you. I tried it. I 
can do other things, but I can't do that. 

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That's What She Says Phill Fest
Fest Productions Inc

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

Phill Fest continues the fest family tradition by fusing jazz harmony with 
brazilian rhythms.  "That's what she says" produces a broad example of 
samba-jazz with all of its grace.  The album puts the consensus-maker in 
perspective, and shows a band on a hell of a hot streak.   Compared to his original 
release this is very gentle.  They are long on unhurried jams, repeated 
listening creates imagery inducing and uplifting music. 

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Creative Concepts Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys Various Artists
bismeaux records

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

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Promise Land Hannah Miller
Hannah Miller

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

On her self-titled album, Hannah Miller plays it all.  The record captures 
the Nashville-based musician in transition, moving away from the 
coffeehouse-friendly songs that filled her previous releases in favor of something 
louder, livelier and more indebted to the sweep and swell of a full backup band. 
You go somewhere when she sings.  You definitely don't sit in your seat.  Her 
voice summons up something ethereal, mysterious, soulful and completely 
unique. 

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Truckin Sessions Vol 3 Dale Watson
Red River Entertaint

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

Dale Watson, the maverick country traditionalist, has added another 14-song 
set, "The Truckin' sessions 3" to his group of big rig classics.  As with 
the first two releases the album is an immediately likable set and it doesn't 
matter if the listeners are truckers.  Watson is a staunch adherent of 
old-style Honky Tonk and Bakersfield country.  He has positioned himself as a 
tattooed, stubbornly independent outsider who is only interested in recording 
authentic country music.  As a result he has never sold tons of albums, but his 
music has been championed by numerous critics and alternative country fans. 
His music has all the dim lights and beer mugs of the best honky tonks in 
every town. 

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Inamorata David Arkenstone/Charlee Brooks
Spring Hill

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

Following their well-received album, Loveren, multi-grammy nominated 
musician/composer David Arkenstone has teamed with enchanting vocalist Charlee 
Brooks to release their latest lp, INAMORATA.  This gorgeous collection features 
Arkenstone's incomparable music with lyrics and vocals by brooks, who uses 
her whole body when she sings, while she puts out this enormous amount of 
force and emotion and passion. 

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Serious Business John D Thomas
Esp Disk Ltd.

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

This is the first time that this 1985 album has been released in digital 
formats.  John D. Thomas can just relax and let his guitar explode.  The 
revolutionary technique allowed Thomas to play his machine with one hand.  He 
proves that if the music is in your soul it'll come out.  With his band Thomas 
sounds like he's lived a thousand lifetimes.  He pulls back the jazz curtain 
and reveals a lonely shell of a man. 

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Stay Gold First Aid Kit
Columbia

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

Two angel sisters from a Stolkholm suburb write nothing but great stories 
and sing with glorious clear instruments as reassuring as a warm fireplace. 
The Soderberg sisters have a gift on their Columbia debut to deliver their 
amazing stories with pure and powerful voices. 

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Music From The HBO Original Series Various Artists
Elektra/Asylum

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

The release features original music from the critically acclaimed drama 
EMPIRE, and includes tracks by cast members Jussie Smollett and Bryshere Gray 
(A.K.A. Yazz) and Terrence Howard, as well as cuts by Courtney Love, Juicy J, 
Jennifer Hudson, Mary J. Blige and others.  The debut season broke records 
and critics cannot stop raving about it.  The music has a wonderful languor, 
but when they belt the windows rattle.  The voices don't sound white or 
black, just sweet or powerful.

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Barbecue Swingers Live Kermit Ruffins
Basin Street Records

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

Beloved New Orleans trumpeter and vocalist Kermit Ruffins proclaims his 
love and pride for his hometown with #1 in New Orleans.  Good times and a carefree 
attitude permeates this collection that features the barbecue swingers, 
Kermit's regular gigging band, for the first time in a decade.  Few artists have 
attacked singing with his ferocity.  James brown sounded this great, but he 
was a shouter.  Kermit Ruffins has a pure, hysterical voice.  He is a complete 
singer within himself. 

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The Black Sky Sequined Colorway
Molehill Mountain

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

Since releasing their self-titled debut, Colorway have evolved into a 
rousing guitar rock outfit who have been celebrated for their energetic shows and 
savvy combination of hook-filled pop and rough & tumble rock.  F. Alex 
Johnson, their lead vocalist/guitarist/songwriter, has a voice with glorious 
anguish, that speaks to people in many emotional places. 

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West The Kennedys
The Kennedys, LLC

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

For 20 years now Paul and Maura Kennedy have been pushing their own musical 
envelope.  To prove that their musical and personal marriage hasn't 
gotten stale over two decades of near constant touring and recording, that the 
couple isn't looking back at old wedding photos, "west" is NOT a 
retrospective package. When Maura Kennedy starts singing it's like she is talking to 
you.  She's got the greatest female voice around.  Their sound is totally 
unique. you know who it is when the Kennedy's come on the radio.

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Direction Home Mark Egan
Wavetone

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

World-renowned electric bassist, Mark Egan, presents his latest release, 
"Direction Home."  Egan's eighth album delivers an intriguing volume by 
blending captivating grooves with sophisticated improvisations, creating an 
uplifting experience that will leave jazz enthusiasts and jam band lovers elated. Be 
open to fragile sounds; let your guard down. 

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Curtisinterruptedus Brian Lisik & The Unfortunates
Cherokee Queen Records

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

Most artists hope, and some demand, that each new project be 
trans-formative--an artistic and personal journey from one creation to the next.
Brian Lisik says that "listening to an album is about taking a 40-minute vacation from wherever you are."  He proves that you have to be completely naked within a 
song.  His singing has a wonderful sound, he belts, he's hot.

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Blue Roses Rachael Sage
Mpress Records

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

Rachael Sage's latest album, "Blue Roses," is a collection of songs about 
the impact any single person can have about the destiny of another, for 
better or worse.  There is no voice in folk like hers--a confrontational blend of 
dry intonation and hard New York-native attitude that suits the tough, frank 
songs she wrote about sex, drugs and lost souls. 

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Farther Down the Line Bryan Hayes
Bryan Hayes

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

Bryan Hayes crafts personal narratives with a novelist's eye and a poet's 
polish.  Clear evidence: the Memphis-area resident's seamless "Farther Down 
the Line."  You don't realize how great a singer really is until you try and do 
it yourself.  You go somewhere great when Bryan Hayes sings.  You definitely 
don't sit in your seat.  That voice summons up something--it's ethereal, 
mysterious and soulful.

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History of Now Callaghan
Imports

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

Callaghan's connection with her fans is more evident than ever in "A 
History of Now" whose songs reflect moments and experiences from her own life, as 
well as stories that people have shared with her.  It's a very strange 
process.  That's why she shuts her eyes when she sings.  She's in another space, and 
the characters are living inside her.

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How Do You Feel Now? Joywave
Cultco Music/Hollywood Records

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

They're smart, they're funny, they're in a band.  Wait, there's more. 
Joywave are five hardened criminals from Rochester, NY, making conceptual, 
humorously self-aware indie pop that's both meta and personal, retro and cutting 
edge, all-ages and sophisticated.  Not only does Daniel Armbruster have an 
unforgettable mustache, he uses his whole body when he sings.  He puts out 
this enormous amount of force and emotion and passion.  The result is a buzz 
that won't stop growing.

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Never Been Better Olly Murs
Imports

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

Internationally acclaimed British singer/songwriter Olly Murs has released 
his sophomore  U.S. album, "Never Been Better," which includes a beautiful 
Pop-Folk ballad with Demi Lovato.  This album is Olly's highly anticipated 
follow-up to "right place right time."  Murs says that "it's time to come out of 
my shell and get a bit more serious."  If they could make a drug that was 
this high I'd never be sober.

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Dirt Road's End Sugarcane Jane
ArenA Recordings

Author:
John Shelton Ivany

Sugarcane Jane, the Alabama Gulf coast-based duo have released their latest 
studio album, "Dirt Road's End".  They have amassed an extremely loyal 
following, with what they call "organic music at its finest."  Rich, homegrown and 
natural, their brand of Americana draws from a deep well of roots 
influences, interwoven with inflections of gospel, country, jazz and rock. Everything 
your parents don't want you to get into as a teenager--that's what you hear 
in their voices.  Everything you love about the night, about love and 
desire, sex and retribution.  All those sides of us Sugarcane Jane calls up.

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