Interview: Jim Walker, Brighthelmstone Promotions

Jim Walker is managing director of Brighthelmstone Promotions. In 2017 he started a festival in his hometown of Hassocks, West Sussex featuring two of our greatest loves – Americana music and good beer. The Mid-Sussex Americana beer festival is running for a third year at the Hassocks hotel in East Sussex on the 24th of August and involves a range of established and emerging talent such as William The Conqueror, Danny George Wilson (of Danny and the Champions of the World), Trevor Moss and Hannah Lou, Lucas & King, Jamie Freeman, Loud Mountains, Noble Jacks, Porchlight Smoker and Ben Featherstone. Mark Underwood of Americana-UK caught up with Jim to talk about plans for the festival and the promotions business. Continue reading “Interview: Jim Walker, Brighthelmstone Promotions”

Lucinda Williams, the Barbican, London, 27th July 2019

From today’s perspective it’s hard to underestimate the importance of Lucinda Williams’ ‘Car Wheels On A Gravel Road’ to the Americana genre. While its impact on release in 1998 wasn’t particularly apparent (it only reached 65 on the Billboard 200 chart), it was given a major boost through countless positive reviews which culminated in it winning a Grammy award for Best Contemporary Folk Album. Since then, it’s been understandably referred to as a seminal work, kickstarting the Americana movement, and is rightly considered as one of the best albums of the 1990s. On the 20th anniversary of its release Williams has been playing the album in its entirety and tonight it was London’s turn. Continue reading “Lucinda Williams, the Barbican, London, 27th July 2019”

Whitney Rose and Ags Connolly, The Lexington, London, 23rd July 2019

Ags Connolly and Whitney Rose may hail from Oxford and Canada, respectively, but they both share a spiritual home in Austin. For Ags it’s the place he relates most to musically, while for Whitney Rose it now represents home following her move from her native Prince Edward Island. While Ags Connolly and Whitney Rose may be at opposite ends of the musical alphabet they are both ruggedly independent acts who demonstrate tonight that they should be filed under the letter ‘C’ for classic country. Continue reading “Whitney Rose and Ags Connolly, The Lexington, London, 23rd July 2019”

Interview: Sam Morrow

Since he first came to the UK Sam Morrow has been winning increasing numbers of fans for the quality of his live performances, with our recent review hailing Morrow and his band as “an outstanding live turn. Combining the best elements of the Allman Brothers, Little Feat and Rusty Weir… they manage to channel all that’s good about their predecessors, while still retaining a sound uniquely their own.” Over in the UK for a brief series of dates – and to help promote his third album, ‘Concrete and Mud’ which we felt was deserving of a hefty 9/10 score – Mark Underwood and Barry Warren sat down with Sam for a chat.
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Will Hoge announces summer UK dates

Will Hoge has announced a limited run of UK tour dates in Glasgow, Bristol, Manchester, and London from tomorrow until 12th of July. The Nashville singer-songwriter has received critical praise for his latest album ‘My American Dream’, (Rolling Stone naming it as one of the Best Albums of 2018) which came out last October via EDLO/Thirty Tigers in the UK. It’s described as “the fiercest, angriest, and most heartfelt collection of songs he’s released… Eight songs of rabble-rousing political commentary that turns a critical eye on the crisis of conscience and culture threatening to tear apart his country, the album is Hoge’s impassioned portrait of what he holds dear — and what we all might risk losing.”  Continue reading “Will Hoge announces summer UK dates”

Asleep At The Wheel explore “New Routes” this September with UK tour

Asleep at the Wheel have announced a short run of live dates in the UK this September. The band will perform at The Long Road Festival in Lutterworth on the 8th of September, before playing headline shows at London Nell’s on the 9th of September and Leeds Brudenell Social Club on the 10th of September.  Continue reading “Asleep At The Wheel explore “New Routes” this September with UK tour”

Interview: Carson McHone

There’s an old expression about dying with your boots on. Carson McHone certainly lives up to that. Interview ready in her dressing room,  she’s attired in a raggedy white cotton t-shirt, with a pair of jogging bottoms tucked into her cowboy boots. A Texan from top to bottom, Carson undergoes something of a transformation later on so that by the time she hits the stage at the Borderline she’s attired in a smart white suit, hair tousled – performance ready. Before her show in London, Mark Underwood of Americana UK and Kerry Fearon, presenter of Downtown Country and Kerry’s Gold Country, sat down to talk to Carson about the tour, her latest album ‘Carousel’ and her approach to songwriting. Continue reading “Interview: Carson McHone”

Here’s 10 americana songs with great lyrics

Given the way in in which people typically consume music nowadays, all too often the lyrics are sidelined, if not completely overlooked. But great lyrics are often what make the best songs truly memorable. The following is the first in an occasional series about songs with great lyrics. Mark Underwood explains what makes the following 10 tracks so special. Continue reading “Here’s 10 americana songs with great lyrics”

Mid Sussex Americana & Ale Festival returns for third year

Back for a third time is one of Americana UK’s favourite summertime events – the Mid Sussex Americana and Ale festival. Hosted by James Walker (managing director of Brighthelmstone Promotions and At The Helm records), a number of acts announced for the festival last Friday were Noble Jacks, Danny George Wilson of Danny and the Champions of the World (performing a solo set), Trevor Moss and Hannah Lou, Porchlight Smoker and Ben Featherstone. Today, in an AUK exclusive we can announce that the second wave of acts to appear, include headliners William The Conqueror, alongside Lucas & King and Loud Mountains.
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Sam Morrow, Slaughtered Lamb, London, 18th June 2019

There’s been a real buzz around recent performances from Sam Morrow and his band, over in the UK for their first proper tour, and with good reason. It’s hard to credit that the LA- based Texan troubadour is only 27 years old given the maturity of his songwriting and this, allied to the ability and panache of his band’s playing, make for a potent mix. ‘Heartbreak Man’ is pretty much an out and out swaggering southern rocking country song – Sam Morrow pretending to be the uncaring rambling character of the song title, when the reality is he’s a heartbroken sweetheart who’s only playing at the notion of being an itinerant badass. Continue reading “Sam Morrow, Slaughtered Lamb, London, 18th June 2019”