Willie Nelson Premieres New Video for Shoeshine Man

  • Willie Nelson premiered his new video covering Tom T. Hall’s Shoeshine Man (below) The song is not on his upcoming covers album American Classics so I have no idea whay he made this video, but he seems to be having a ball. The Texas Yoda has taken a page from the DIY codger goofing around in front of a video camera recently used by Neil Young for his video Fork in the Road.
  • The Americana Music Association announced the lineup for its 2009 festival,  Sept. 16-19 at around several of  Nashville’s best venues – The Mercy Lounge, The Cannery Ballroom, 3rd & Lindsley, The Station Inn and The Basement.  On the roster is Cross Canadian Ragweed, Angela Easterling, Asleep at the Wheel, The Bottle Rockets, Jim Lauderdale, Buddy Miller, Joe Pug, Charlie Robison, Marty Stuart, Patrick Sweany, Those Darlins and many more.
  • Popmatters.com has posted an mp3 for Chain, a cut off Vic Chesnutt’s upcoming release At the Cut (Constellation) to be released 22 September (US)
  • Randy Travis, Martina McBride and Ray Price join an International  line-up of over 60 International, UK and Irish acts performing on three separate stages at the UTV CountryFest ’09  August 1st – 2nd  at the Kings Hall in Belfast.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BDtaJmrVfx8[/youtube]

Joe Pug to Release Free EP, In The Meantime

  • On Thursday June 25th Americana/Folk singer/songwriter Joe Pug will release In The Meantime, five unreleased songs recorded during sessions for his inaugural EP Nation of Heat. The download will be available exclusively at www.joepugmusic.com.
  • Rates for registration for the Americana Music Association Conference – AMA members $300 and Non-member $400 – will increase on June 30th. Conference registration includes all daytime events at the Nashville Convention Center, admission to all Music Festival showcases and a ticket to the much anticipated Honors & Awards show.
  • Spunky riot grrrl/hillbilly gals Those Darlins will be bringing their Daisy Dukes across the East and North East to sread a good time and support thier upcoming  self-titled longplayer debut (release 7/7 on CD, vinyl and digital.) Here’s a taste :

Those Darlins – Red Light Love mp3

William Elliot Whitmore Hell or High Water Video

  • New releases by Texas singer/songwriters Slaid Cleaves (Everything You Love Will Be Taken Away), Wayne “The Train” Hancock (Vipers of Melody) and Dale Watson (The Truckin’ Sessions Vol. 2 ) are in stores and online today.
  • HearYa.com gives thier view on Steve Earle new Townes Van Zandt covers album Townes.
  • 77square.com posts a conversation with Wayne “The Train” Hancock about his latest album Vipers of Melody.

Introducing the new video by William Elliot Whitemore for his song Hell or High Water (thanks to ninebullets.net for bringing this to my attention.) Twang Nation Review of Whitmore’s newest release Animals in the Dark.

[myspace]http://vids.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=vids.individual&videoid=55794026[/myspace]

SXSW To Do

It’s been a long time since I was able to attend the coveted, and now convoluted, South-By-Southwest music festival and conference amnd this year is no exception. But in the nature of bloggy goodwill I will try and list all the Americana-Roots events I have come across. Please feel free to add any I might have missed.

Joe Pug is pretty damn cool. His schedule is:

3/18   SXSW–Stimulus Package Day Party @ Paradise – 3:00pm  (401 E. 6th at Trinity upstairs Free/Public)
3/18   SXSW Official Showcase – 10:30pm Victorian Room at the Driskell Hotel
3/19   SXSW–Schubas Roundup @ Yard Dog Gallery – 12:40pm (1501 S. Congress Free/Public)
3/19   SXSW–Thru Windows Party @ Fado –  11:00pm (214 W. 4th Free/Public)
3/20   SXSW–Bring Down the House Show  – 5:45pm  (Free–email day of  show for address don@nodooragency.com)
3/21   SXSW–Reggie’s/Unscene Party @ The Jackalope – 3:45pm and 4:40pm (Free/Public 404 E. 6th at Trinity)

3/18  – Joe Ely’s playing Momo’s

3/19 Aquarium Drunkard and My Old Kentucky Blog’s “Vaya Con Tacos” party featuring Roadside Graves, Those Darlins, The Rosebuds and many more.

Also 3/19  the Yep Roc at the Continental Club is offering one of the best showcases with Dave Alvin, The Iguanas, The Gourds, Giant Sand and BeauSoleil.

3/20 The always lovely Bloodshot Records day party at Yard Dog art gallery (1510 S Congress) – starts at the crack of noon
No invite or badge required!
12:15 Walter Salas-Humara / I’m Not Jim
12:45 Andre Williams
1:15 Charlie Pickett
1:45 Dex Romweber Duo
2:15 Ha Ha Tonka
2:45 Exene Cervenka
3:30 Deadstring Brothers
4:15 The Meat Purveyors
4:45 Justin Townes Earle
5:15 Scotland Yard Gospel Choir
5:45 Waco Brothers w/ Rosie Flores

and

Bloodshot Records SXSW showcase
Red Eyed Fly (715 Red River by 7th Street)
Saturday, March 21
8p Exene Cervenka
9p Deadstring Brothers
10p Ha Ha Tonka
11p Dex Romweber Duo
Mid Justin Townes Earle
1am Waco Brothers

Hoist a shiner and some BBQ or a taco and enjoy the fine music and hospitality Austin offers.

DelFest and Pickathon News

  • The deadline for discounted tickets for DelFest has been extended until March 2nd at midnight. Some of Bluegrass’ best will be featured at the 3-day festival- Sam Bush, Old Crow Medicine Show, Leftover Salmon, JD Crowe & The New South, The Lee Boys as well as headliner legendary Del McCoury and more. The festival takes place Memorial Day Weekend, May 22-24th on the Allegany County Fairgrounds in Cumberland, Maryland.
  • The 11th annual Pickathon Indie Roots Music Festival, which takes place  just outside Portland, OR.,  has released their new website and festival line-up which includes Blitzen Trapper ,  The Sadies, Dale Watson, Justin Townes Earl, Those Darlins and Joe Pug.  Pickathon takes place July 31-August 2.
  • Now a little love for my old hood New York City.  The always excellent and lovely Joe Whyte will big show with his  band and will be featuring some new tunes. It’s on Monday, March 2 and it’s  free show at Rockwood Music Hall (196 Allen St., NYC) Go, you won’t be disappointed.

Rachel Brooke and Lonesome Wyatt to Release A Bitter Harvest

  • According to a post on her MySpace page Rachel Brooke will be collaborating with  Lonesome Wyatt from Those Lonely Bastards. The release is entitled A Bitter Harvest, and will be released around May, and will be available on CD and vinyl.
  • Daytrotter has three new Joe Pug cuts; Bury Me Far From My Uniform, Unsophisticated Heart, The Door Was Always Open.  Seriously,  Joe’s Pub tonight!
  • Washington Post staff writer J. Freedom du Lac reviews Willie and the Wheel. A new collaberation by Willie Nelson and Western swing preservationists Asleep at the Wheel, and he like what he hears.
  • Alejandro Escovedo’s Real Animal comes out the big winner in No Depression’s Readers Poll.

RIP Odetta

  • The fine folks over at the 9513 drew my attention to some good stuff this AM. LaundroMatinee has several videos from a Joe Pug live performance, including the unreleased songs “Not So Sure” and “Bury Me Far From My Uniform,” and there’s a video for “Old Enough,” a new bluegrass-inspired single by the The Raconteurs featuring Ricky Skaggs, Ashley Monroe and Twang Nation friend Mark Watrous on fiddle.
  • As an early Christmas present Dar Williams is giving away some cuts from her Ann Arbor show at The Ark on September 17, 2008 (Hank Williams Sr’s birthday!) – “It’s Alright” “Buzzer” “Easy Way.”
  • The Grammys nominees will be unveiled tonight, and No Depression has a few words on some of the nominees. I typically tune in to check out the music to avoid.
  • Last but not least, RIP to legendary singer Odetta.

Joe Pug – Nation of Heat EP

We mere mortals can only hope to be meager conduits for the grand themes of life – Love, hope, fear, death – these concepts are bigger then any one of us but that doesn’t stop the courageous and foolish from shaping these experiences into music and words.

Joe Pug, a Chicagoan sometimes-carpenter, is standing on the shoulders of Guthrie, Dylan, Van Zant, Prine, Clark, Simon and Young to join the ranks of present-day troubadours like Ryan Bingham, Willy Mason and Ray LaMontagne. Joe Pug’s songs belie this greenhorn’s recent foray into the craft of songwriting and his world-beaten voice belies his youth (early-twenties.)

“Hymn 101” is worth the price of admission alone. A trotting acoustic guitar supports the lyrics  “I’ve come here to get high, to do more than just get by, I’ve come to test the timbre of my heart.” and “I’ve come here to meet the sheriff and his posse, to offer him the broad side of my jaw, I’ve come here to get broke, and then maybe bum a smoke, we’ll go drinkin’ two towns over after all.” This is goddamn staggering in its courage and rich in it’s symbolism.

“Call It What You Will” has a mournful mood that brings to mind Townes Van Zandt at his most melancholy. “I call today a disaster, she calls in December the 3rd” Pug sings being at once melodramatic and nonchalant. You can almost feel the whiskey and brimstone on Pug’s breath when he sings “I am the day, I am the dawn, I am the darkness coming on” on the harmonica laced Hymn 35

There is a timeless quality to this 7 song EP, like a found chest of remembrances in your grandparent’s attic, there are treasures for this that pay attention. And the foolish courage of man armed with only an acoustic guitar standing as a lightening rod for the ages is a wonder to behold.

Joe Pug performing Hymn#101

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XMTj6pZ1HCM[/youtube]