AUK’s top 10 americana albums ever: Ljubinko Zivkovic

Welcome to our weekly feature in which AUK writers in turn make their selections for the ‘top 10 americana albums ever’. When all have contributed we will then draw up a shortlist and ask them to vote to decide the overall AUK writers top 10. This week Netherlands based writer Ljubinko Zivkovic takes up the baton and guides us down the back straight with a scintillating run of albums, a number of which are definite podium contenders when this particular race is finally run. Continue reading “AUK’s top 10 americana albums ever: Ljubinko Zivkovic”

Classic Americana Albums: The Band “The Band” (Capitol, 1969)

There are a number of albums that can claim to have kicked off Americana, Flying Burrito Brothers, Dylan, or CSN, but the one that really embodied the American spirit and turned it into a new sort of music was The Band’s self-titled second album. The context for this record was 1969 and the key albums were ‘In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida’ by Iron Butterfly, ‘In the Court of the Crimson King’ and ‘Led Zeppelin II‘. Into this came an album with a cover picture that looks like Matthew Brady’s Civil War portraits, and an organic acoustic sound that contrasted sharply with the Mellotrons and fuzz guitars that dominated the charts. Continue reading “Classic Americana Albums: The Band “The Band” (Capitol, 1969)”

AUK’s top 10 americana albums ever: Alan Fitter

At AUK we are on a quest to find the ‘top 10 americana albums ever’. Over the last few weeks our writers have been going through the mental anguish of trying to narrow the whole history of americana down to just ten albums. When every writer has had their say, a shortlist of the most frequently chosen albums will be drawn up and voted on, in order to generate the definitive AUK writers top ten. This week we turn to one of our most senior writers. During a recent AUK writers zoom meeting, collective jaws dropped as he told us all of having seen The Beatles and The Rolling Stones within four days of one another! Enjoy the selections of Alan Fitter. Continue reading “AUK’s top 10 americana albums ever: Alan Fitter”

AUK’s top 10 americana albums ever: Tim Martin

At AUK we are on a quest to find the ‘top 10 americana albums ever’. Over the last few weeks our writers have been going through the mental anguish of trying to narrow the whole history of americana down to just ten albums. When every writer has had their say, a shortlist of the most frequently chosen albums will be drawn up and voted on, in order to generate the definitive AUK writers top ten. With 10 writers now having had their say we are a quarter of the way through and we hope you agree that it’s been a fascinating series. Straight on to number 11 then. This week’s selections come from Bristol’s very own Tim Martin. Continue reading “AUK’s top 10 americana albums ever: Tim Martin”

AUK’s top 10 Americana albums ever: Rick Bayles

At AUK we are on a quest to find the ‘Top 10 Americana Albums Ever’. Over the coming weeks and months each AUK writer will in turn, present their own personal selections. When each writer has had their say, a shortlist of the most frequently chosen albums will be drawn up and voted on, in order to generate the definitive AUK writers top ten. Continue reading “AUK’s top 10 Americana albums ever: Rick Bayles”

The Band “The Band (50th Anniversary Edition)” (Capitol/UMe, 2019)

It could have been called ‘America’, but it is justifiably called ‘The Band’. Legend has it that it  was conceived as a concept album relating to different aspects of America and the Deep South. It is carefully planned and structured, where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, awesome as those parts are. It still stands out in sharp contrast to almost everything else in the contemporary soundscape. Continue reading “The Band “The Band (50th Anniversary Edition)” (Capitol/UMe, 2019)”

The Band release 50th anniversary edition of second album

When The Band’s seminal eponymous second album was released fifty years ago on September 22, 1969, not much more was known about the reclusive group than when they released their landmark debut ‘Music From Big Pink’ to widespread critical praise and bewilderment, just the year before. Continue reading “The Band release 50th anniversary edition of second album”

What Is This Americana Thing Anyway…?

Our occasional feature on the whys and wherefores of Americana is back – this time featuring prolific writer and former metal fiend turned Gram Parson aficionado Mark Underwood. He once upon a time used to write for Music Week don’t you know (we didn’t). Continue reading “What Is This Americana Thing Anyway…?”

What Is This Americana Thing Anyway…

It’s that time again when the great and the good of Americana-UK ‘fess up and tell it like it is in their individual journeys into the genre we all know and love. This week Ben Roberts – a man who survived being a metalhead and a drummer to make it to the promised land of musical goodness (quite why he doesn’t have the mighty Wilco’s “Heavy Metal Drummer on his list we don’t know – but could probably find out…) Continue reading “What Is This Americana Thing Anyway…”

The Band’s “Music From the Big Pink” gets 50th anniversary re-release

On July 1, 1968, The Band’s landmark debut album ‘Music from Big Pink’ seemed to spring from nowhere and everywhere. Drawing from the American roots music panoply of country, blues, R&B, gospel, soul, rockabilly, the honking tenor sax tradition, hymns, funeral dirges, brass band music, folk, and rock ‘n’ roll, The Band forged a new style that some argued changed the course of popular music. Fifty years later, the mythology surrounding Music from Big Pink lives on through the evocative storytelling of its songs including “The Weight,” “This Wheel’s On Fire,” “Tears of Rage,” and “To Kingdom Come,” its enigmatic cover art painted by Bob Dylan, the salmon-colored upstate New York house – ‘Big Pink’ – where The Band wrote the songs, and in myriad descendant legends carried forth since the album’s arrival. Continue reading “The Band’s “Music From the Big Pink” gets 50th anniversary re-release”