The Mastersons “No Time For Love Songs” (Red House Records, 2020)

Chris Masterson and Eleanor Whitmore, collectively The Mastersons, spend some of their time as part of Steve Earle’s Dukes. This is their fourth album and starts with the title track, a love song. Produced by Shooter Jennnings it is mostly light country/folk material that recalls Crosby Stills and Nash at times, and anyone of a number of female singers at others. It was no surprise to learn they have also worked on Tanya Tucker’s recent album. Masterson says of the mood of the album: “I do think geography comes into play when making records, and I think this record does have a Southern California feel to it”. Continue reading “The Mastersons “No Time For Love Songs” (Red House Records, 2020)”

South By Southwest Festival 2017. Austin, Texas

I normally advise Americana-loving friends who enquire about sxsw simply to visit Austin at any time of the year and check out venues like the Broken Spoke or the Saxon Pub to get the authentic Austin feel. You’ll be sure to see the likes of Jon Dee Graham, William Harries Graham, Bob Schneider, Darden Smith, James McMurtry and other such stalwarts of the scene. But there are certain sxsw American events that are unique to that week and are not to be missed.

The Yard Dog Gallery on South Congress has a yard at the back which is covered by a gazebo during sxsw and it is really worth spending a whole afternoon there, because the music is invariably top notch and the audience respectful and very much “up for it”. A common characteristic of all the places I shall describe is the superhuman amount of alcohol consumed. I’m by no means teetotal but I tell you, the amount these guys put away is mind-boggling. Nursing a three dollar local IPA, I was hugely entertained by a highly-wired Austin Lucas (whose Alone In Memphis always brings a lump to the throat), who also duetted with Mara Connor. Continue reading “South By Southwest Festival 2017. Austin, Texas”