There’s nothing like a cause to get Steve Earle all fired up so when he was approached to write a set of songs for a theatre production about 29 miners killed in a coal dust explosion in Raleigh County, West Virginia in 2010, it must have seemed like grist to the mill. The play, ‘Coal Country’, written by Jessica Blank and Erik Jensen, featured Earle on stage throughout with his songs delivered solo in a “Greek chorus” format. There were seven songs in all and Earle has reworked them with The Dukes for ‘Ghosts Of West Virginia’, adding three related songs to flesh out the running time. Continue reading “Steve Earle & The Dukes “Ghosts Of West Virginia” (New West Records, 2020)”
In these trying times we can think of nothing better here at AUK than knocking out Top Ten’s of this, that and the other. Indeed every man and his wife (or every wife and her husband or every wife and her wife or every husband and his husband or… let’s just say everyone and their significant other) seems to be on the case. Continue reading “The top ten Americana duets”
Here are ten songs written about other artists. The list below is not the final word, but represents the start of a conversation. The idea is to explore some of our favourite artists singing about other artists. In most cases the songs are celebratory or pay tribute, others simply observe or comment and one here is not very complimentary. So, having set the ball rolling, I’m passing it over to you folks. I’m sure that the collective knowledge and wisdom of the AUK readership can come up with many more great additions. Please post them in the comments section at the bottom of the page. I hope that you enjoy my selections and I look forward to hearing yours. Continue reading “10 songs about other artists”
Steve Earle & The Dukes have announced the release ‘Ghosts of West Virginia’ due out on May 22nd, 2020 via New West Records – you can hear the first track from it below. The album was produced by Steve Earle and engineered by Ray Kennedy at Jimi Hendrix’s legendary Electric Lady Studios in New York City. The 10-song set is Earle’s 20th studio album and was mixed entirely in mono. Continue reading “Steve Earle returns with new album “Ghosts of West Virginia””
Time for another in our series looking at the routes our writers have taken into Americana and just what it is that makes it our favourite genre. This week we are warmed by Clint West’s pathological dislike of country music and how the poacher turned a gamekeeper. Continue reading ““What is this Americana thing anyway…?” – Clint West”
A week today it’ll be Christmas and you’ll open up that gift box of three different Lynx deodorants as you surreptitiously check to see what condition it’s in, in case you can regift it to someone else on Boxing Day. You could save yourself that deflated feeling by looking through our writers’ list of the albums which have meant the most to them over the last 12 months, and then just ask for them. You might be sweaty but at least you’ll have Nick Cave nestled under your arm. Without further ado, here’s part one of our top albums of 2019. Continue reading “Americana UK writers choose their albums of 2019 – part one”
The live music platform for concert recordings, nugs.net, will live stream The 5th Annual John Henry’s Friends Benefit tomorrow, which will be presented by Steve Earle and City Winery. The event takes place at The Town Hall in New York City, NY on Tuesday, December 17th, 2019 at 8pm ET in the US. Steve Earle & The Dukes will be headlining the event, accompanied by Jason Isbell and Amanda Shires, Josh Ritter, and The Mastersons. Which basically means staying up half the night if you’re in the UK but how big a Steve Earle fan are you? Continue reading “Stream the John Henry’s Friends webcast benefit including Earle and Isbell tomorrow”
The epically long-running live music series ‘Austin City Limits’ recently featured a tribute to the songs of the late Guy Clark, who of course died in 2016. The show was hosted by Steve Earle and featured his band the Dukes, with the hour-long episode including other Texan musicians such as Rodney Crowell and Joe Ely. The show starts off with a cover of Clark’s ‘Dublin Blues‘ which you can watch below – it won’t surprise you to hear that it’s absolutely cracking. No news yet as to whether PBS America will show the whole thing in the UK (there’s a great cover of Ricky Scaggs’ ‘Heartbroke’ by Earle with Crowell) but this will whet your appetite for now.
During 2019 Emmylou Harris, Jackson Browne and Steve Earle embarked on “The Lantern Tour” which raised money for the Women’s Refugee Commission in the US. They’ve now announced some new dates for the rest of 2019 and 2020 which will feature Harris, Browne and Earle again along with Patty Griffin, The Mastersons, Thao Nguyen, and David Pulkingham. Continue reading “Emmylou Harris, Steve Earle and Jackson Browne to tour another refugee benefit concert”
We leave you this holiday weekend dear readers with some great footage of Steve Earle who while in town to perform at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival at the end of last month, joined Preservation Hall Jazz Band for a late-night gig at the group’s own venue in the French Quarter for one of their annual Midnight Preserves shows. They collaborate on a version of the blues standard ‘T’Aint Nobody’s Business’ and boy what a collaboration. Have a good one.