Green Leaf Rustlers “From Within Marin” (Silver Arrow Records, 2020)

Ever wondered what Chris Robinson does in his spare time? Well, it seems he’s fond of playing locally in Marin County with a bunch of buddies in a band called the Green Leaf Rustlers. And not just any old buddies as the band consists of Robinson (guitar, vocals) along with Barry Sless (David Nelson Band, … Continue reading “Green Leaf Rustlers “From Within Marin” (Silver Arrow Records, 2020)”

Classic Americana Albums: Lyle Lovett “Pontiac” (MCA/Curb, 1987)

I am sure it is an apocryphal and familiar story, but it does have a point regarding Lovett’s surprising union with Julia Roberts. There was speculation about how the one might manage to live with the other being such a talented superstar spouse, but it was assumed that Ms Roberts would find a way to … Continue reading “Classic Americana Albums: Lyle Lovett “Pontiac” (MCA/Curb, 1987)”

The ten worst Johnny Cash tracks

Johnny Cash was a force of nature. There are not enough superlatives in the dictionary to do the man any kind of justice. J.R. was a magnificent songwriter. Just as magnificent, perhaps even more so, was he an interpreter of other people’s songs. However, in an (almost) fifty-year recording career, during a time when labels … Continue reading “The ten worst Johnny Cash tracks”

Americana Music Fest, 28th – 29th January, Various Venues, Hackney

Americana Music Fest, organised by the Americana Music Association UK, is two glorious nights of artist showcases that take place from about 6PM until almost midnight in a half dozen venues.  That’s a lot of acts to catch, with a lot of choices to be made – here’s what David Chalfin selected.

Eastbound Jesus “Full Moon Over Salem” (Independent, 2020)

The 2011 debut album from sextet, Eastbound Jesus was optimistically entitled ‘Greatest Hits Vol 1’. Three studio albums and one live album later, whilst we have not yet been regaled with ‘Greatest Hits Vol 2’, the release of ‘Full Moon Over Salem’ should assuage any longing there might be out there for any such hits … Continue reading “Eastbound Jesus “Full Moon Over Salem” (Independent, 2020)”

Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn, The Barbican, London, 25th January 2020

A rare visit to these shores for Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn saw the pair on stage at The Barbican – it was the simplest of stage setups, a couple of chairs, a few microphones and a couple of banjo stands for each player. Bela Fleck is, of course, the master of all things three … Continue reading “Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn, The Barbican, London, 25th January 2020”

Cup O’Joe “In The Parting” (Independent, 2020)

Across the great fountain of knowledge we know and love as the World Wide Web there are simply dozens of possible explanations offered for the origins of the expression ‘Cup O’Joe’, which, as all dear readers will know, is slang for coffee. Well, actually this reviewer didn’t. Not sure why, just never came across this … Continue reading “Cup O’Joe “In The Parting” (Independent, 2020)”

AmericanaFest UK 2020 Conference Showcase preview – part four

The AMAUK conference is now into its fifth year and one of the highlights of the conference is the two nights of showcases which take place before the awards ceremony on 28th/29th January featuring the best of americana talent, both homegrown and from around the world. It takes place at six venues across Hackney, all … Continue reading “AmericanaFest UK 2020 Conference Showcase preview – part four”

AmericanaFest UK 2020 Conference Showcase preview – part one

The AMAUK conference is now into its fifth year can you believe it. When it started, Brexit hadn’t happened, Ed Miliband looked like he was about to win the next election and you could still pop into BHS for a pair of socks. One of the highlights of the conference is the two nights of … Continue reading “AmericanaFest UK 2020 Conference Showcase preview – part one”

Pepe Belmonte “Live at the Royal Albert Hall” (Beatroot Rendevouz, 2019)

This live album was recorded way back in 2011. The songs are all from his debut album ‘The Hermit’s Waltz’ which was released that year and never had a follow up tour as a result of a serious accident that left Pepe in a coma. This recording captures a moment in his journey back from … Continue reading “Pepe Belmonte “Live at the Royal Albert Hall” (Beatroot Rendevouz, 2019)”