Willie Nelson announces new album “Last Man Standing”

Legacy Recordings has announced the release of ‘Last Man Standing’, Willie Nelson’s new studio album (and 11th for the label) (and about 23 thousandth for the world), on Friday April 27th in the UK. Arriving just in time for his 85th birthday, the first single from the project is the title track, the video for which you can see below. The album is comprised of songs newly-penned by Nelson and longtime collaborator and producer Buddy Cannon who have been working together since 2008, with Cannon producing more than a dozen of Willie’s albums. The album is described as “acknowledging the transience of time while marveling at the joy, beauty and surprise the world has to offer.” That bit of the world that doesn’t yet have access to Twitter.  Here’s the tracklisting. Continue reading “Willie Nelson announces new album “Last Man Standing””

Video premiere: Ginger Wildheart “Paying It Forward”

Omg this is catchy. Ginger Wildheart (no relation to Baker) releases his new album ‘Ghost In the Tanglewood’ on 2nd March on the Graphite label and he’s shared with us this morning the video from the next single to be taken from it. He told AUK: “Back in early 2017, when recording ‘Ghost In The Tanglewood’, with Dave Draper and John Kettle in Wigan, I was lucky enough to meet the students of the Hope School. They made me feel so welcome that I asked them if they’d sing on the song ‘Paying It Forward’. They kindly accepted my request and their happiness is captured on the recording forever. I had no hesitation in wanting to recreate the exact setting of that original meeting for the video, and when asked, they again happily agreed to take part. I’m very honoured that we have now have the experience captured on video.” Lovely video and great song too. What more could you want for a Monday morning?  (Tour dates below)

Continue reading “Video premiere: Ginger Wildheart “Paying It Forward””

Ordinary Elephant “Before I Go” (Independent 2017)

Crystal Hariu and Peter Hanmore are the married couple that are Ordinary Elephant and this is a very considered and often stately work. The album seems to be surfing some sort of zeitgeist in Americana at the moment. Simple, folksy arrangements using guitar and banjo as a songwriting pairing without drifting too close to the Earl Scruggs bluegrass thing. This Is The Kit could be a handy signpost here. All the songs are tightly constructed with the basic instrumental pairing providing the back bone to all the songs. Continue reading “Ordinary Elephant “Before I Go” (Independent 2017)”

Belle of the Fall “Rise Up” – Listen

Belle of the Fall is Tracy Walton and Julia Autumn Ford, an indie folk rock pop alternative americana with a soul, duo from Connecticut. Tracy plays upright bass and sings and Julia plays nylon string guitar and sings.  Rise Up is a sumptuous track, and who could resist lyrics like “dealing with uncertain fate is not the time to postulate nor is it the time to fall”.   The album of the same name is due in April.

VanWyck “An Average Woman” (Independent, 2018)

VanWyck is an Amsterdam based singer who has tried out a number of different musical genres on her path to this intimate album of confessional songs. It’s a wildly varying CV taking in classical piano, rapping, playing with a jazz dance band, and being half of a trip hop duo. The classical piano and perhaps a few jazz influences apart none of this earlier history impacts on An Average Woman which may be the new direction or another branch on VanWyck’s musical tree. The former is to hoped for as this is an album of some depth, musically and conceptually, which marks VanWyck as a singer that it is hard to ignore. Continue reading “VanWyck “An Average Woman” (Independent, 2018)”

Win tickets to Ramblin’ Roots Review with AUK

Probably the best value americana festival in the UK lands again this year just after Easter so you can boogie away those calories – The three-day indoor Ramblin Roots Revue music festival returns to High Wycombe for a second year from 6-8 April, in association with americana label Clubhouse Records. The bill boasts more than 25 roots, Americana, bluegrass and alt-country acts from the US, UK and Europe including The Magic Numbers ahead of their new album, The Rails, and a UK debut performance from Norwegian band, Lucky Lips.  Continue reading “Win tickets to Ramblin’ Roots Review with AUK”

Girl from the North Country, The Noel Coward Theatre, London

A West End musical based entirely on the songs of Bob Dylan has to rank quite highly in the list of things that will never exist. And yet Girl from the North Country is that very thing. After a short run at the Old Vic it has now transferred with near sell-out success for what is described as a limited run at the Noel Coward Theatre. That very close to sold-outness would, one would like to think, ensure it has a longer life to come somewhere else.  Despite weaving a story around a single artist’s music it’s not your typical juke-box musical – it’s not your typical anything. Continue reading “Girl from the North Country, The Noel Coward Theatre, London”

Johnny Dowd “Twinkle, Twinkle” (Mother Jinx, 2017)

From beneath the waters of this dark and eerie sonic soundscape emerge some of the most well-known songs in the American canon. The songs on this fine album are as familiar as, well, ‘Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star’ – the title cut – along with ‘Tom Dooley’, ‘Oh My Darling Clementine’, ‘Red River Valley’, ‘St. James Infirmary’ and ‘House of the Rising Sun’. But it’s a safe bet you’ve never heard them done this way. Dowd is highly original, even eccentric. Sometimes these songs, familiar as they are, can be recognised only by the lyrics. Continue reading “Johnny Dowd “Twinkle, Twinkle” (Mother Jinx, 2017)”

Southern Tenant Folk Union “Southern Tenant Folk Union (10th Anniversary Re-Issue)” (Johnny Rock, 2018)

If you haven’t heard of them before, Southern Tenant Folk Union have been around for a while, ten years to be precise, and to celebrate this achievement the Edinburgh based 6- piece have decided to reissue and remaster their debut album which saw them garner a lot of attention in terms of radio airplay and live opportunities.
The songwriting present on the record is of an incredibly high standard leaning further towards the more folk and bluegrass side of the ever-undefinable Americana bracket but channels that roots sound very well, combining it with modern songwriting sensibilities and naturally, the lyrical content to match the time it was recorded, as opposed to the time the sound reflects. Continue reading “Southern Tenant Folk Union “Southern Tenant Folk Union (10th Anniversary Re-Issue)” (Johnny Rock, 2018)”