sat 02/07/2022

Nashville

Amanda Shires, Woodend Bowling and Tennis Club, Glasgow

In a members-only bowling club, down a side street in a residential part of Glasgow I'd never visited before last night, Texan fiddle-player and songwriter Amanda Shires stood wearing the most magnificent pair of cowboy boots I had ever seen.They...

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theartsdesk Q&A: Musician Todd Snider

He has been called “America’s sharpest musical storyteller” by Rolling Stone, and has enough talent to give Bob Dylan’s talking blues a run for their money. The East Nashville-based singer-songwriter, guitarist, yarn-spinner, troubadour and amiably...

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Nanci Griffith, Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow

“I know what I was angry about when I wrote this,” Nanci Griffith told the crowd as she introduced “Hell No (I’m Not Alright)”, “but you can get your anger out about whatever you want.”It seemed a little odd that Griffith left the big hook (if the...

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The Black Keys, Corn Exchange, Edinburgh

I last saw Dan Auerbach and Pat Carney’s primitive garage blues duo a little under four years ago, touring their sixth album Attack & Release. Truth be told, I found them slightly heavy going. Big riffs, big drums, back-of-a-beer mat lyrics and...

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The Joy of Country, BBC Four

The makers of this short history of country music had done a good job of rounding up interviewees, who included such veterans as Ray Price, Merle Haggard and Charley Pride alongside the offspring of several country legends. We met Shooter Jennings (...

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CD: Nick Lowe – The Old Magic

Nick Lowe is truly the Zelig of rock. The erstwhile son-in-law of Johnny Cash, a pivotal figure in the history of punk and pub rock. Recently I was watching a DVD of the David Essex movie Stardust – there are worse guilty pleasures – and up popped...

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CD: John Hiatt - Dirty Jeans and Mudslide Hymns

Hiatt's regular band play as if they're taking a road trip from Nashville to... well, California maybe, Hiatt's former home which he sings about eloquently on the wistful country-rocker "Adios to California". Despite its title, it's the Golden State...

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Shelby Lynne, Queen's Hall, Edinburgh

It may not be a particularly popular statement, but the financial black hole rapidly consuming the music industry undoubtedly has its fringe benefits. Five years ago Shelby Lynne would have toured the UK with a session band and played for perhaps 70...

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CD: Emmylou Harris - Hard Bargain

Forty years into her career, Emmylou Harris keeps on growing

Always renowned as an interpreter of other artists' material, Emmylou Harris has been a late developer as a songwriter. On 2008's All I Intended to Be, she successfully balanced cover versions with her own songs, but this time she has written...

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CD: k.d. lang and the Siss Boom Bang - Sing it Loud

k.d. says it loud, she's back and she's proud

With k.d. lang's original "cowpunk" days of Absolute Torch and Twang now a distant memory, she has settled into the role of deluxe vocal stylist with a bit of heritage balladry on the side (for instance, her collaboration with Tony Bennett, A...

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CD: Alison Krauss & Union Station - Paper Airplane

Alison Krauss hasn't made an album of new material with turbo-bluegrass combo Union Station since Lonely Runs Both Ways, from 2004. Having filled some of the time in between by co-starring with Robert Plant on the mesmerising (and Grammy-guzzling)...

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Country Strong

Hollywood stars are well known for bragging they do all their own stunts, often at the expense of the genuine daredevils who risk their lives on their behalf. With the advent of CGI and motion-capture technology, though, it is becoming increasingly...

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