Going Mobile

Marty Raybon might well want to consider re-titling his album Southern Routes & Branches, given how many roads he travels in its dozen songs. To be clear, some of these roads he’s traveled before—nine of the songs are c...
 

(Much) More To Come…

One of the finest contemporary bluegrass bands around is cementing its reputation as same during this, its 30th anniversary year, with the second of three overviews of each decade of its productive existence. Like Volume One, V...

 

Little Richard, Ascending

‘It’s Just Like An Unfinished Diamond’  Richard Penniman has at various times, often without prompting, referred to himself as “the originator, the instigator, the facilitator” of rock ‘n’ roll. To varying degree...
 

The Wounded Wanderer, Restored

U.S. Route 50 lives in the shadow of Route 66 in the lore of legendary American highways, but it’s no less awesome as either myth or fact. Built in 1926 as part of the original U.S. Highway system, Route 50 runs east and west...

 

That Swingin’ Little Guitar Man

Carl Perkins recalled a show he played in Atlanta in 1958 at which he was visited backstage by a young fellow who came with guitar in hand and introduced himself as Jerry Hubbard. The two pickers engaged each other in a couple ...
 

The Cowboy Rides Away

It is the misfortune of Lloyd Estel Copas to be better remembered for how and with whom he died than for the wonderful music he made as Cowboy Copas, in which guise he was a dominant presence on the country charts from 1946 to ...

 

A Hoot For The Age

The hootenanny lives! Banjo master/educator Bill Evans’s In Good Company has that feel of an informal gathering of musicians playing exactly what they want to play, complementing each other to a T and having a great time doin...
 

Jammin’ On the High Seas

Originally given away free as a collectible to patrons of the annual Rhythm & Blues Cruise , Robert Mugge’s hour-and-a-half documentary offers an in-depth look at the fabled after-hours jams sessions aboard ship, when...

 

Here Comes the Sun

“As fast as we roll, we’re always catching up/as much as we have, it’ll never be enough/as hard/as hard as we work, we just work our fingers to the bone/what do we have to show?” Listening to this catchy chorus of the f...
 

On Saving Mortal Souls

“Having not played in this style in the past is a huge disadvantage, but I am willing to stretch and fight to get it under control. Those pesky chords! Those finger positions, those slides, those finger-thumb rolls, those cou...

 

Summit Sessions: B.J. Thomas on Scepter

For those of a certain generation, the radio of their youth never seemed to be long without a new, great B.J. Thomas single. Indeed, between 1966 and 1972 he had 19 charting singles, some way bigger than others, some more regio...
 

For That Man In the Booth, the One With a Woman on Each Arm…

Apart from interviewing Albert King in 1978 upon the release of his New Orleans Heat album on the Tomato label, where he was continuing the roll he had enjoyed during the previous five years on Stax, my enduring memories of thi...