Rod Picott’s Circus of Misery and Heartbreak is coming back to the UK

Americana UK described Rod Picott, some years back, as, “the best of the current crop of Americana singer-songwriters.” Over the course of eight albums the one time sheet rock hanger (that’s plasterboard on this side of the water) has consistently proved us right while his live appearances are always eagerly anticipated. Good news then that he’s just announced that he’s returning to the UK for a set of dates in March of next year in support of his latest album, Out Past The Wires, which will be released to coincide with the dates. A double disc release (on CD and vinyl), Out Past The Wires will have 22 songs ranging from whispery ballads to guitar driven rockers and every musical spot between and was funded via Kickstarter with Picott’s target met within days of its announcement. Just as the Kickstarter campaign kicked off Americana UK spoke to Rod about the album, his budding career as an author and poet and his working relationship with his buddy, Slaid Cleaves. Continue reading “Rod Picott’s Circus of Misery and Heartbreak is coming back to the UK”

Glasgow Americana Festival, 4th – 8th October 2017

Now in its 11th year, Glasgow Americana brightened up the dark nights coming in as we prepare for winter. Over five days the festival provided a strong set of concerts which showcased some of the brightest talents from the Scottish roots scene along with the usual complement of visiting stars. Altogether over 20 acts appeared at several venues across the city with many of the shows selling out, the venues including converted churches, a brewery, tiny pub back rooms and, according to Michael Weston King of My Darling Clementine, a squash court. As often happens when such a lot of music is squeezed into such a tight time line there were clashes meaning your correspondent had to forego some shows however online comments and actual chat with those who had gone to those shows beamed back with positive smiles and thumbs up. There was a fine mix of standard gigs featuring a headliner along with a couple of portmanteau shows offering a range of acts playing shorter sets. Continue reading “Glasgow Americana Festival, 4th – 8th October 2017”

Slaid Cleaves “Ghost on the Car Radio” (Proper Records 2017)

Slaid Cleaves releases his first album since 2013’s “Still Fighting the War” and it has to be said that the four-year wait has been worthwhile as “Ghost on the Car Radio” is an outstanding return. Born and raised in Maine but now a resident of Austin, Texas, Cleaves has clearly used the time wisely as this is an outstanding bunch of songs, full of insight and characters who are wrestling with the realities of modern life in small-town America such as the reflective tone of the amateur racer in Primer Gray who dwells on life’s changes as her relates his family’s connection to the sport. Or there are the changes that cause hardship to the family farm in Hickory as the narrator accepts that “you can’t stop the march of time”.  Continue reading “Slaid Cleaves “Ghost on the Car Radio” (Proper Records 2017)”