Willie Nelson to release new album “First Rose of Spring”

Willie Nelson has announced the release of his 70th (!) solo studio album (and 14th for the Legacy label)–on Friday, April 24 (right before Willie’s 87th birthday on April 29th). The record is described as “an atmospheric soulful showcase of beautifully-written songs and poignant performances” and is Nelson’s first new release since winning the 2020 Best Country Solo Performance Grammy Award–Willie’s 10th overall, not including his Grammy Legend and Lifetime Achievement Awards–for ‘Ride Me Back Home’ the title track from his 2019 release. Continue reading “Willie Nelson to release new album “First Rose of Spring””

Songs for the apocalypse: Deadstring Brothers “Blindfolded”

Omg this band – does anyone remember them?  Hailing from Detroit, Michigan and fronted by guitarist/vocalist Kurt Marschke, the worst thing you could say about Deadstring Brothers were that they were sometimes a bit derivative of the Rolling Stones, but who cares when songs like ‘Blindfolded’ were this good? Sadly their label home Bloodshot announced the end of their career with an announcement in 2013 that “The brutal and indifferent whims of the world drove these guys out of the business. It is to all our losses.” To which we say that maybe Deadstring Brothers were just too good for this world. The record that this track is from – ‘Starving Winter Report’ – is an out and out americana classic, even if not enough people know this yet.

Sunday Morning arrive in UK for dates next week

Italian Americana band Sunday Morning have announced their first-ever UK shows next month. The quartet, from the northern city of Cesena, have been picking up a raft of great reviews for their fourth album – succinctly titled ‘Four’ which was released last summer.  Markedly different in style and structure to their previous albums, the record was inspired by band founder and principal songwriter Andrea Cola’s time spent working with producer Daniel Lanois at the world-famous Esplanade studio in New Orleans. Dates are below the clip!

Continue reading “Sunday Morning arrive in UK for dates next week”

Vandoleirs cover Proclaimers, announces UK dates – Listen

Texas country punks Vandoliers are following their Bloodshot debut full-length album ‘Forever’ with the release of a single, a cover of The Proclaimers’ ‘I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)’. Rolling Stone Country premiered the song today before the weekend saying, “For their new single, the Dallas-Fort Worth group Vandoliers further broaden their palate, transforming a Nineties one-hit-wonder into something unexpectedly relevant… It’s Nineties nostalgia shot through with nonconformist spirit.”. Continue reading “Vandoleirs cover Proclaimers, announces UK dates – Listen”

Watch Billy Bragg & Peter Donegan perform “Rock Island Line” at the AMAUKs

We leave you this week dear reader with a clip courtesy of the Blues Kitchen from this year’s AMAUK awards where Billy Bragg performed the classic ‘Rock Island Line’ with Lonnie Donegan’s son Peter. It was the first debut record to be certified gold in the UK and Bob Harris introduced the performance by noting how seminal the single was to the whole of the British pop and rock scene that went on to evolve from the mid-1950s, despite its origins as a US folk song. The performance is absolutely blistering anyway (also it’s nice to watch it not frazzled). Have a good one.

Dixie Chicks share first new music in 14 years – Listen

Oh well this is exciting albeit brief. ‘Gaslighter’ is the upcoming first studio album from the Dixie Chicks in 14 years and the trio’s Instagram account has been posting stills from a music video shoot for the LP’s title track. On Sunday night, Dixie Chicks singer Natalie Maines shared a few seconds of ‘Gaslighter’ the song which you can hear below. “I’m gonna get in trouble for this, but that’s why you love me,” she wrote underneath the post. Well not from us Natalie! (Trouble that is, we do love you). Continue reading “Dixie Chicks share first new music in 14 years – Listen”

Songs for the apocalypse: Unbunny “Nothing Comes to Rest”

Way back in the prehistoric days of AUK we used to get sent a lot more fuzzy indie with americana vibes to it than we do these days, and one of the bands that I remember most was the Illinois based “psych-folk” three-piece Unbunny. They arrived at about the time my own rabbit Arafat met an untimely end in my back yard, so the band name felt spookily resonant. Their 2004 album ‘Snow Tires’ contained the track ‘Nothing Comes to Rest’ which featured on one of our first Friends of Americana UK compilations and which became my personal anthem to poor little Arafat. The melody and arrangement still get me today.

Bronwynne Brent heads to UK for dates next month

Gritty Mississippi Delta songbird Bronwynne Brent is returning to the UK next month to perform material from past releases as well as a brand new album ‘Undercover’ over the course of an extensive three-week long tour. Brent has twice carried off the Best Female Performer title in our annual Reader’s Poll here at AUK and various BBC radio presenters continue to champion her where the singer, who has been compared to Billie Holiday, Peggy Lee and Amy Winehouse, previously recorded a studio session with Whispering Bob Harris who described her as “really special” (in the nice sense of that word). Continue reading “Bronwynne Brent heads to UK for dates next month”

Nada Surf “Come Get Me” – Listen

We leave you this week dear reader with a treat for those of you of a more Fannies bent, with a track from the new album by Nada Surf ‘Never Not Together’ – as Graeme Marsh on Stereboard put it, “Sandwiched between the [first and third track on the album] is ‘Come Get Me’, possibly the best track Nada Surf have ever recorded. Its mesmerising keyboard hook is an absolute joy, but the subject matter is anything but. Caws sings “I was always on my guard since I was a kid” and “there was no love in our home”, but this is a corker of a track that, in an ideal world, would be pumping out on radio stations for years.” And I basically couldn’t agree more. Sorry to nick your words Graeme. Have a good one – oh and we are having our annual AUK get together over the weekend in (wait for it…) Clitheroe, so do come and say hello if we’re not in too much of a state.

Jason Isbell and 400 Unit announce new album “Reunions” and UK dates

Four time Grammy Award winner Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit have announced their triumphant return with a new album ‘Reunions’ due out May 15th on Thirty Tigers and a European tour at the end of this year. The first track from the new record comes in the shape of melody-packed, anthemic new single ‘Be Afraid’ which you can listen to below. Continue reading “Jason Isbell and 400 Unit announce new album “Reunions” and UK dates”