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On their second effort for Big Machine, Gary LeVox, Joe Don Rooney and Jay DeMarcus have arena-ready country-rock covered with the power ballad “Hurry Baby,” the infectious “Hot ... Read More
Tribute albums can out and out suck. You’ve heard the ones I’m talking about. Artists, either unwilling or too awestruck, don’t want to put their own stamp on their hero’s ... Read More
For his 12th studio album, Neal McCoy turned to powerhouse couple Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambert, as well as ace session guitarist Brent Rowan, for production duties. However, Blake and ... Read More
Hey, isn’t “Dixieland” another way of saying “the South,” like in Alabama’s “Dixieland Delight”? And isn’t the South synonymous with country ... Read More
Nearly half this album references family, but the portrait presented here is hardly ideal—the Southern-rock-flavored “Southern Family Anthem” chronicles interfamily marriage, ... Read More
For the casual bluegrass fan who isn’t all that familiar with Tony Rice (and you’d have to be a very casual fan not to be), he’s one of the musical style’s most important ... Read More
Casey, an American Idol third-place finisher, garnered a following on the talent competition with his standout bluesy renditions of songs such as John Lennon’s “Jealous Guy.” Read More
Several of Nashville’s stars offered up songs for the Navy SEAL action flick Act of Valor.The Keith Urban-penned “For You” is featured in the film—playing over the closing ... Read More
Imagine you’re listening to a favorite bluegrass instrumental, while in the next room your spouse is watching (groan) some classical quartet on PBS. You nod off, and your subconscious ... Read More
In the film Joyful Noise, Dolly Parton and Queen Latifah portray two women who try to lead a church choir to victory in a choral competition. The music-centric movie’s soundtrack is a gem ... Read More
The Tennessee native’s seventh album brims with typical country fare, exalting all things rural, as in those kinds of locales where fishing can equal an ideal date night (“Fish ... Read More
Gretchen, a writer of hits for the likes of George Strait and Martina McBride, penned the latter’s controversial 1994 hit “Independence Day,” winning for the singer/songwriter, ... Read More
Because of her sunny personality and the infectious humor she so often displays, it’s easy to forget that some of Kellie Pickler’s most memorable musical performances have actually ... Read More
As they say, you can’t accurately judge a book—or, for that matter, an album—by its cover. If you could, The Louvin Brothers’ 1959 country-gospel collection, Satan Is Real, ... Read More
Dierks’ latest album marks a return to his honky-tonk-tinged brand of country music coming after 2010’s bluegrass-oriented Up on the Ridge. Read More
Tim McGraw’s final album for Curb Records suggests the beginning of an era of fresh creativity for this multidimensional artist. Read More
Because Willie Nelson’s star rose only after he’d departed Nashville for his native Texas in the early 1970s, some may forget that his first major successes came as a Music City ... Read More
Janie Fricke, winner of the Country Music Association’s Female Vocalist trophy in 1982 and 1983, adds a bluegrass tinge to several of her hits on this release, including the 1982 ... Read More
The all-gospel country album—once an old standby—is far less common in the mainstream today, though inspirational music remains a logical move within the smaller sphere of traditional ... Read More
It’s no mere coincidence that pianist/singer Norah Jones, who’s paired her sublime vocals with Willie Nelson’s on a few Grammy-nominated duets, calls her sporadic side project ... Read More

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