The Year in Music (So Far)


The year is still early, but it’s shaping up to be another good one musically.  It’s been more folky, acoustic sounds I’ve been leaning towards lately, including:

Imaginational Anthem Vol. 7: Guitar Soli (my review at No Depression)

All of My Memories: The John Denver Collection (my review at PopMatters) (this one came out last year, but I’m just getting to it now)

Jackson Browne & David Lindley: Live at The Main Point 1973 (my review at No Depression)

Luke Brindley: A Few Favorites
Covers album from the Virginia-based singer/songwriter/guitarist. Assured and ear-pleasing renditions of songs by Bruce Cockburn, Nick Drake, Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen, Jackson Browne, and more. He seems to listen to a lot of the same music I do.

William Tyler: The Lagniappe Sessions
A live 4-song in-studio set from one of my favorite new acoustic guitar phenomenons. His playing on Ry Cooder’s “Theme from Southern Comfort” is earthy, warm, and swampy (though the swampy part could just be the images suggested by the movie which first featured the song).

Katherine Priddy: The Old Tree Sessions #4
I was lucky enough to get one of these very limited edition CD’s (they sold out in a half hour) from this young U.K. folksinger who has the potential to be the next “big thing” in the folk world. Her crystalline voice and guitar harken back to a late 60’/early 70’s heyday of Anne Briggs, Joni Mitchell, Sandy Denny, and Linda Thompson.

Debashish Bhattacharya: Slide Guitar Ragas from Dusk till Dawn
Misty and mystical slide guitar, sitar, and tabla explorations.

I’m also currently listening to an advance copy of Jorma Kaukonen‘s Ain’t in No Hurry for a review I’m writing. Front porch music from a seasoned veteran – very nice stuff. And I’m reviewing an upcoming retrospective from the Signature Sounds label and have had the track  “Tree in the Lung” by the Winterpills stuck in my mind for a couple of weeks now (even though I have no idea what it’s about).

Recently released is the decidedly not acoustic debut from Swedish/Australian dream-pop duo Say Lou Lou.  The twin daughters of the Church frontman Steve Kilbey are sort of a darker version of Abba, with some electronica and psychedelia thrown in (though their latest songs seem to be going in a more dancey/pop direction…). I’ve been looking forward to this one since their first single a couple of years ago.

In March there’s the reissue of Dennis Taylor’s 1983 album Dayspring, for which I wrote the liner notes. Dennis is a great guy as well as a great guitarist.

April looks especially golden with new albums from Josh Rouse, Steve Hackett, and Nicki Bluhm & the Gramblers.


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