NASHVILLE BEATS: ANGELA AUTUMN DEBUTS

Americana/folk singer-songwriter Angela Autumn is set to release her new album,
Frontiers Woman, on June 4, 2021. A guitar player by trade who also plays clawhammer banjo, Autumn originally hails from Zelienople, Pennsylvania but now calls Nashville home. Like the weathered Appalachian mountain peaks of her home, her voice yodels, cascades, and breaks with emotion. Accompanied by an often-droning guitar, a homespun sensibility is the center of Autumn’s lyrical craft. From the carefree whooping and bluegrass elements in the album’s jaunty kiss-off opener “Old Time Lovers,” to the slow, Latin shuffle of “God’s Green Earth,” to the Laurel Canyon elements in “Texas Blue Jeans,” her music freely wanders the backroads of American music.

Mining the emotional roller coaster of life and telling stories from an empowered female perspective, Autumn’s lyric-heavy songs on Frontiers Woman create a cohesive whole centered around nomadic ways. “Frontiers Woman is about a young woman who’s traveling,” says Autumn. “This young person is examining their life in relation to a map, and where she wants to go. What’s the cost of being a pioneer when no one else believes in what you’re doing? When no one else understands — and you don’t even understand — are you going to keep moving towards your dreams?” 

Helping Autumn’s journey toward her own dreams, demo collaborations with pals Nick Harley (S.G. Goodman) on guitar and Kate Haldrup (Lilly Hiatt) on drums were the genesis of Frontiers Woman with the initial three songs: “Old Time Lovers,” “Sowin’ Seeds,” and “God’s Green Earth.” The trio began to record the album in late 2019, with Autumn at the helm as producer and Haldrup engineering. Frontiers Woman is her first self-produced album. “I had much more agency just in having more time to think and be immersed in the process,” Autumn says of producing the record. “Working with a female engineer was just a different experience.” With the record’s release delayed by the events of 2020, Autumn had time to overdub some of the songs, adding Wilco-esque drums and electric guitars to the initial arrangements. It also gave her time to add three more songs: “Back in Line,” “Texas Blue Jeans,” and “Fine Blue Sky.”

Autumn doesn’t shy away from the peaks and valleys of her journey. That determination can be heard in “Old Time Lovers.” “It’s about finding the truth for yourself,” says Autumn. “The reels and fiddle tunes I heard in North Carolina opened up a new musical world for me. We win and we lose along the way.” 

Exploring the limits of self-liberation, “Fine Blue Sky” taps into the guilt that can accompany decisions that affect others. “It’s about a woman leaving a relationship and saying, ‘I’m gonna go have my own affair.’ And then she feels guilty. So, she’s saying, ‘I’m sorry I left. I had to do this, but I just wanted a piece of that fine blue sky for my own story.’”

The album’s emotional climax, “Shooter” digs deep into reckoning with — and prevailing over — depression: “It was born out of frustration about gun ownership, but also it’s about struggling with self-doubt. I’ve dealt with depression and I wanted to express the feeling of, ‘If this thing’s taking me down, I’m going to aim for it and take it down with me.’”

The album ends with a hint of nostalgia on “Texas Blue Jeans,” which pulls inspiration from a pair of her late father’s blue jeans and imagines what his life might have been like in 1970s Texas. “I wanted to feel others’ experiences without being too voyeuristic,” she explains. “I wanted to understand others’ pasts, and how the past can be linked to your own pain.”  In drawing a map of her own experiences, Autumn hopes others can follow it. “I want my journey to help others in some type of way, or else it would be futile for me.”

Autumn grew up north of Pittsburgh, on the outskirts of the Appalachians, where she started playing music at the age of 9 and started writing songs when she was 14.  She found her footing in Pittsburgh’s supportive music scene. Inspired by artists as diverse as Joni Mitchell, Nick Drake, and Doc Watson, Autumn describes her music as “traditional,” but with strong contemporary influences. “I was 20 when I found bluegrass,” she recalls. “Traditional music ended up being the thing that means the most to me. I think it has the best community.” After moving to Nashville, the singer-songwriter gradually put down roots by jamming with bluegrass players at the now-famous concert series at American Legion Post 82, the locus of any roots music out of the Nashville mainstream.

Autumn released the Crash and Burn EP in 2014, and the Rascal EP in 2019, and her music garnered some attention in press circles. NPR dubbed her music “like snippets from a diary entry, filled with… meditations on loneliness and the desire to love.” DittyTV took a liking to the title track, “Rascal,” adding it to one of their playlists, and PBS collaborated with Autumn on a video for the song “Colorado.”

She followed that up with a single release in 2020, “Captain,” and kicked off the lead-up to Frontiers Woman by releasing the first single from it, “Back in Line,” in March of 2021.  Autumn plans to release several additional singles in May before Frontiers Woman comes out (“Old Time Lovers,” “Sowin’ Seeds,” and “Shooter”). 

Live performances may be few and far between in the short-term, but fans eager to see Autumn perform can see her special album release livestream show on TheBoot.com’s Facebook and Instagram on June 3, 2021 at 8 p.m. central.

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New Music From The Fratellis

The Fratellis return with the news of a brand new album ‘Half Drunk Under The Full Moon‘ out on May 8th, and the launch of their first track ‘Six Days In June‘, an upbeat and foot-stomping anthem that sure to put a big smile on the face of any Fratellis’ fan!

PURCHASE HALF DRUNK UNDER THE FULL MOON

Half Drunk Under The Full Moon follows their critically acclaimed album ‘In Your Own Sweet Time‘, their first top 5 UK album in 10 years, and this new album very much continues on this upward trajectory and is likely to become a signature moment in the band’s career.

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BADFINGER-No Matter What Revisiting The Hits

A stellar line-up of special guest superstars join Joey Molland’s Badfinger to create a full-length album of unique twists on the band’s all-time favorite hits!

Includes performances by Matthew Sweet, Todd Rundgren, Rick Wakeman, The Legendary Pink Dots, Jethro Tull’s Ian Anderson, Rick Springfield, Sonny Landreth and more! Revamped versions of the Paul McCartney-penned “Come And Get It” as well as the smash hit singles “Baby Blue,” “No Matter What,” “Day After Day” and the monster ballad (later covered by Mariah Carey) “Without You!

PURCHASE NO MATTER WHAT REVISITING THE HITS

New “Collection” of Songs from Brit Folk Rocker Ben Howard

Critically acclaimed, multi-platinum musician and composer, Ben Howard has released his 4th studio album,  Collections From The Whiteout.

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The new album features the single ‘What A Day’

Howard’s music has drawn comparisons to Nick Drake and John Martyn,  and has garnered him 2 Brit Awards, British Male Solo Artist, and British Breakthrough Act in 2013.

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Sara Watkins Releases Under The Pepper Tree

Sara Watkins of the Grammy-winning groups Nickel Creek and I’m With Her, as well as The Watkins Family Hour released her new solo album, Under The Pepper Tree, last week via New West Records.

Created with families in mind, the personal project encompasses songs Sara embraced as a child herself and brings storytelling, solace, and encouragement to the listener, no matter the age.

Met with widespread acclaim, Paste Magazine called it “...an album of pure comfort food, capable of thawing out even the coldest, most cynical hearts…its ineffable beauty makes the album a fast favorite for a person of any age to unwind after a long day.”

American Songwriter said “…Watkins excels once again,”

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Sara explores and re-imagines childhood. Her version of Pure Imagination, is ethereal.

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New Music From Singer-Songwriter Willie Mason

Willie Mason dropped a new single today that will appear on a new album, Already Dead scheduled to release on August 6 via Cooking Vinyl.

Already Dead is the long-awaited follow-up to Mason’s last album, Carry On which came out in 2012.

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Check out his new single Youth On A Spit

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New Single And Solo Debut Coming from Oliver Wood

Oliver Wood has announced his debut solo album, Always Smilin‘, will be released May 21 on Honey Jar/Thirty Tigers. The first single “Fine Line” is out now on all streaming platforms

A mainstay of modern-day American roots music with his band The Wood Brothers, Oliver has spent the better part of the 21st century blurring the boundaries between folk, gospel, country-soul, and Americana, earning an international audience and a Grammy Award-nomination along the way. Now stepping out on his own, he refocuses his sharp songwriting, savvy guitar chops, and one-of-a-kind voice on an 11-song collection that evokes the swagger of a Saturday evening picking party one moment and the solemnity of a Sunday morning gospel service the next.

The year before the pandemic, people would come through Nashville where I live and I’d set up a co-write or a jam in our studio, just to do some stuff outside of my own band,” Oliver explains. “There wasn’t an album in mind. I just wanted to be creative. But when the pandemic happened, the songs started building up.”

You’d be surprised at the music you write and the chances you take when there’s nothing at stake,” Oliver continues. “The best art is an accident. You wind up accessing a different part of your brain and trusting your instincts, rather than relying on control. I’ve learned it would serve you well to be like that in everyday life, especially when you’re dealing with stresses and crises.”

As Oliver Wood navigated the pandemic by focusing his creativity on writing and recording his first solo album, he’d simultaneously use the opportunity to build a bridge between his past and present through a wide-range of musical collaborations. Guests include mentor and co-writer Chris Long (with whom he co-founded King Johnson, the roots-rock band that dominated Atlanta’s music scene around the turn of the millennium) to percussionist Jano Rix (Oliver’s partner in The Wood Brothers). Blues heroine Susan Tedeschi, Hiss Golden Messenger’s Phil Cook, Medeski Martin & Wood’s John Medeski, Tedeschi Trucks Band’s Tyler Greenwell, Nashville staple Phil Madeira, and singer/songwriter Carsie Blanton also make appearances, with Rebecca Wood—Oliver’s wife—handling the album’s handmade linocut cover art. For Oliver, the goal was simple: to collaborate freely with a mix of old friends and new partners, embracing a new level of independence.

Embracing the full range of Oliver Wood’s musical heritage, Always Smilin’ builds upon the blues and gospel sounds he explored long before The Wood Brothers’ formation to the American roots music he’s been making during the past two decades. It’s an album of collaborations and communal recordings, spearheaded by a longtime team player who, for the first time ever, is making the final decisions himself. There will be more Wood Brothers music in the future, but this is an album about the present. An album about right now. And right now, Oliver Wood is smiling.

PRE ORDER ALWAYS SMILIN’

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New Single From Semisonic in Nearly 20 Years

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Credit:  Steven Cohen

Grammy-nominated, Twin Cities-based trio Semisonic released the official video for “You’re Not Alone,” the group’s first new song in nearly 20 years. The single is the title track from their forthcoming five-song EP You’re Not Alone out on September 18 via Pleasuresonic Recordings/Megaforce Records.

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The video for “You’re Not Alone” was directed by Minneapolis-based filmmaker Phil Harder, whose resume includes videos for Prince, Foo Fighters, Liz Phair and Nada Surf.

For the new Semisonic video, ‘You’re Not Alone,’ we began with memories of childhood in the woods,” explains frontman and songwriter Dan Wilson. “Filmmaker Phil Harder creates a fable of the woods, the city, a distant beach, and a young boy who places a message in a bottle and sends it on a long journey. Inspired partly by Richard Powers’ devastatingly beautiful novel, ‘The Overstory,’ partly by the paintings of Tomas Sanchez (one of which is featured on the sleeve of the single), and partly by the profound isolation we are experiencing during the pandemic, the video reflects the hopeful message of the song.”

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BUDDY & JULIE MILLER RELEASE “PUBLIC SERVICE SONGS” FROM SELF-QUARANTINE

 

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Buddy & Julie Miller have released a series of “Public Service Songs” from self-quarantine during the Covid-19 pandemic. Produced by Buddy at his legendary home studio in Nashville, TN, The Boot has called the series of songs “a fun time capsule for the world’s current predicament.” Generally lighthearted, “Public Service Song #1: Stay Home” included the refrain, “Stay home, stay home, stay home, stay home, just call me on the phone, stay home” while “Public Service Song #2: Concerning Bleach” included the cautionary advice, “Don’t, don’t drink bleach, it will kill you, and you will be dead. Don’t, don’t, don’t drink bleach, no matter what the President said.”

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Today, American Songwriter has premiered the video for the markedly more purposeful and no-nonsense, “Public Service Song Number 5: Get Offa My Money.” Calling it a “thundering musical mallet,” American Songwriter says, “Barebones in body but deafening in delivery, the husband and wife duo take turns exploiting the ‘do as I say, not as I do’ lifestyles of some of our nation’s most revered men.” Speaking to the publication, Julie Miller said “I was so shocked to find out from a documentary that many of the architects of democracy were slaveholders. Even the writer of the glorious words ‘… we hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal…” then packed up and went home to many slaves. I was disgusted. Then I realized my black friends were having to touch the slave owners pictures every time they used money. It is insane and cannot continue.”

100% of proceeds from the sale of the song will benefit Black Lives Matter.

PURCHASE PUBLIC SERVICE SONG NUMBER 5: GET OFFA MY MONEY 

The Miller’s series of “Public Service Songs” follows their 2019 album Breakdown on 20th Ave South. Met with overwhelming critical acclaim, the album was named a “Best of the Year” by many outlets with Rolling Stone Country saying it “… ranks among the year’s finest,” while American Songwriter called it “… a mesmerizing listen.” NPR Music stated “At the heart of the album are the riveting idiosyncrasies of Buddy & Julie’s partnership, and it’s a wondrous thing to be allowed back in.” Breakdown on 20th Ave. South was their first album in a decade after Julie was waylaid by a series of health issues and Buddy became an extremely in-demand collaborator and producer for Robert Plant, Solomon Burke, Richard Thompson, Shawn Colvin & Steve Earle, Patty Griffin, The War & Treaty and more. In that time, Buddy also joined T Bone Burnett on the musical team working on the hit ABC-TV series Nashville, and following Burnett’s departure, became the show’s Music Executive Producer.

Buddy & Julie Miller have also been nominated for “Best Duo/Group” for the Americana Music Association’s 19th Annual 2020 Honors & Awards currently scheduled for September 16th, 2020 at the historic Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, TN. Buddy Miller said, “We’re just so humbled and honored to be included with all these other fantastically talented artists and grateful to everyone who has supported us and our music throughout the years.

Buddy & Julie Miller’s Breakdown on 20th Ave. South is available via New West Records.

 

 

 

 

 

Live Stream Tonight — A Night For Austin

 

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Appearances by: Paul Simon, Edie Brickell, Vince Gill, Lyle Lovett, Shawn Colvin, John Hiatt, Jerry Douglas, Bonnie Raitt and Boz Scaggs, Ryan Bingham, Black Pumas, Ray Benson and Asleep at the Wheel, Augie Meyers with Los Texmaniacs, Flaco Jiménez with Los Texmaniacs, Patty Griffin, Alejandro Escovedo, Willie Nelson, Lukus Nelson, Gary Clark Jr., Britt Daniel (Spoon), Jimmie Vaughan and The Tilt-a-Whirl Band, David Ramirez, Charlie Sexton with Doyle Bramhall II, Terry Allen, Norah Jones, James Taylor, Ethan Hawke, Renée Zellweger, Woody Harrelson, and Owen Wilson.

 

A Night For Austin” a two hour, commercial-free telethon-style fundraiser airing June 10th at 8 pm Central

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Austin, Texas, has, without a doubt, left a lasting impression on all who have spent any amount of time in the Live Music Capital of the World—a week for SXSW, a day’s stop on tour, business conferences, or years building careers and friendships—and right now, the city we’ve strived to keep weird all these years needs a little help to “Keep Austin Going.” Announcing “A Night For Austin,” a television and streaming event to raise money for the community of Austin in reaction to the closures and loss due to COVID-19 shutdowns. Produced by Luck Productions—the busier-than-ever collective best known for hosting Luck Reunion at Willie Nelson’s Luck, TX, ranch every year—“A Night For Austin” is the brainchild of Grammy Award-winning, Mt. Rushmore-worthy singer-songwriter Paul Simon. The two hour, commercial-free telethon-style broadcast starts at 8 pm Central on June 10th at anightforaustin.com and twitch.tv/luckreunion . The program will also air locally on CBS Austin (KEYE). A Night For Austin will be powered by Brightcove, the world’s leading video technology platform.

Performances from Simon, Nelson, James Taylor, and more will intertwine with appearances from the likes of Ethan Hawke, Renée Zellweger, Woody Harrelson, and Owen Wilson; all Texans with a strong love for the city and its people. 100% of the money raised will go to a fund managed by the Austin Community Foundation to be distributed directly to MusiCares Austin, HAMM, Central Texas Food Bank, Six Square, Southern Smoke Foundation, Red River Cultural District, and People Fund. Locals will be able to watch “A Night For Austin” on CBS Austin (KEYE). Worldwide, “A Night For Austin” will be streamed on anightforaustin.com and at Luck Reunion’s Twitch channel, complete with a “virtual tip jar”—a direct link to donate throughout the evening. A full, ever-growing list of performers can be found below.

We were incredibly honored and excited that Paul Simon and his team tapped Luck to produce this event and to benefit our own community of Austin,” said Matt Bizer, Co-founder of Luck Productions. “It means a lot for us to be able to support this community that has always inspired and provided for us and we are excited to be doing it alongside an amazing group of talented individuals, organizations, artists who themselves represent the unique fabric and soul that makes Austin our home.”

Everyone here at CBS Austin loves our Austin community, our hearts go out to the musicians, artists, and business owners who have struggled due to the COVID 19 pandemic,” said Amy Villarreal, Vice president and General Manager of CBS Austin/Telemundo Austin. “That’s why we’re proud to provide this commercial-free two-hour televised event as a means to help them out.”

The coronavirus has completely upended live music in Austin, which is why we must come together to support the industry that makes our city special. Austin Community Foundation is honored to work with Paul Simon to bring much-needed relief to those who rely on the music scene for their livelihood. The funds raised through A Night For Austin will go to nonprofit organizations equipped to help musicians, producers, venue owners, and others persevere through these difficult times,” said Mike Nellis, CEO of Austin Community Foundation.