April 15, 2014 |
Aspiring artists face few challenges more daunting than escaping the shadow of a family member who has established a reputation in the same field. That goes double for Carlene Carter. The veteran singer and songwriter not only is the daughter of one of the most prominent female figures in all of country music -- June Carter -- but she's also the granddaughter of Mother Maybelle Carter, who along with her brother-in-law A.P. Carter and his wife was part of the Carter Family, a trio whose recordings and radio performances played a crucial role in bringing country music to the world nearly a century ago. Oh, and her stepfather happened to be Johnny Cash.
April 9, 2014 |
It wasn't as if Carlene Carter was short on source material to draw on for her new album, “Carter Girl,” the first of her 37-year recording career in which she fully embraces her place in country music hiistory as the daughter of June Carter (Cash) and the granddaughter of Mother Maybelle Carter of the original Carter Family. “I made a list of every Carter Family song I knew that they had sung or I had sung when I was with them,” she said of her periodic drop-ins as a member of the Carter Sisters touring unit that included her mother and two aunts, Helen and Anita Carter.
April 8, 2014 |
What's Martina McBride, one of the most decorated country singers of the last 20 years, doing devoting an entire album to vintage R&B, soul and rock songs? Having a blast. That seems to be the main motivation behind "Everlasting," her just-released studio album, which was produced by Don Was and includes covers of Elvis Presley's "Suspicious Minds," Otis Redding's "I've Been Loving You Too Long," Aretha Franklin's "Do Right Woman, Do Right Man" and Jimmy Ruffin's "What Becomes of the Brokenhearted.
April 4, 2014 |
Broad of shoulder and booming of voice, Bob Romeo is a memorable guy with a seemingly memorable job title: chief executive of the Academy of Country Music. Based in Encino, it's one of that genre's two principal trade groups along with Nashville's Country Music Assn.; both seek to promote the style through concerts, festivals and, most visibly, televised award shows. But although they have their differences, the organizations are commonly known by acronyms - ACM and CMA - that can lead to confusion.
March 28, 2014
The morning after firebrand singer Valerie June's swing through L.A. to open for Sharon Jones at the Wiltern on Tuesday, she had a whirlwind day of activities related to promoting her acclaimed 2013 album “Pushin' Against a Stone” before hopping a plane for her next stop: three nights with Jones at the venerable Fillmore auditorium in San Francisco. As engaging as “Pushin' Against a Stone” is, it didn't fully capture the charm and energy of her live performance, which doesn't surprise the 32-year-old Jackson, Tenn., native greatly.
March 12, 2014 |
Female country singers are complaining that their music is being pushed off the airwaves by a new crew of young, male, “bro-country” musicians singing interchangeable songs about dirt roads, pickup trucks, girls in tiny cutoff jeans and beer, lots of beer. Carrie Underwood is leading the charge, telling Billboard magazine that the country music business seems to have very limited room for new female musicians, but that it's different for the guys. “There seem to be so many male singers out there who can be viewed as similar, and there seems to be plenty of room for all of them,” Underwood said.