country Archive

He Wrote That Song, Too: A Conversation with Steve Dorff (Part Two)

Continued from Part One… Bill Kopp: Writing for film and television has very strict rules of its own, having to do with song length and a lot of other things. Is composing within those kind of constraints more difficult, or is it a case of, “Hey, I enjoy the challenge,” kind of like doing a

He Wrote That Song, Too: A Conversation with Steve Dorff (Part One)

Even if you follow popular music very closely, you may not be familiar with Steve Dorff. But it’s almost certain that you’ve heard his music. That idea – that his relative anonymity stands in contrast to the high profile of his work – spawned his 2017 memoir, I Wrote That One, Too: A Life in

30 Days Out, August 2020 #1: Robin Bullock, Cliff Eberhardt, Eleanor Underhill, Christy Lynn

Two steps forward, one (and sometimes two) back. The United States’ continued failure to contain the spread of COVID-19 is having more and more lasting effects. Beyond death and permanent health effects, countless businesses have shuttered. Here’s hoping most of those closures are temporary. Here in Asheville we’ve already lost one beloved music venue. The

30 Days Out, July 2020 #1: Blake Ellege Band, Rocky MTN Roller, Life Like Water, Mr. Jimmy

Once again it’s time for a look at live music events in and around Asheville in the coming 30 days. And for the first time since early March (and those mostly ended up canceled) there are some actual live-and-in-person performances to spotlight. That said, caveats apply. (1) Will these shows actually happen? Who knows!? Best

30 Days Out, June 2020 #2: Hearts Gone South, Angel Olsen, Natural Born Leaders, The Get Right Band

If you’re at all like me, you may have noticed this phenomenon: when you take on a new task, you stumble as you learn your way through it. And by the time you finally figure out the most efficient and effective way to do it, you’re nearly done. Perhaps that’s the case with musicians and

Checkin’ in with The Christy Lynn Band

This is the first of three short features on Asheville-based artists releasing new albums in March 2020. Working in the country idiom, Sweetheart of the Radio is the debut release from the Christy Lynn Band. Christy Lynn Barrett describes her music as “meaningfully kitschy.” She laughs when asked to explain what that means. “I like

Album Review: Amanda Anne Platt & the Honeycutters — Christmas on a Greyhound Bus

When an artist releases an album (or EP) of holiday music, it need not be designed to fulfill an obligation to a label. It also needn’t be a placeholder while a creatively spent artist treads water, waiting for the muse to return. And it doesn’t have to be a schmaltzy, pandering and overly sentimental collection

Hundred-word Reviews for December 2019, #2

With the end of 2019 on the horizon, I figure now’s as good a time as any to bring things up to date with another batch of quick reviews. In this edition: all new music, ten titles. Blues, powerpop, jazz and more. All worth your time. Maybe even a Great Gift Idea™. Happy holidays! Coco

Casey Kristofferson: Coming Home to Country

With a surname like Kristofferson, a musician is essentially presented with two options: they can run from preconceived notions, heading in an altogether different musical direction. Or they can embrace the benefits and expectations that come with the famous name, and strive to live up to it. Singer, songwriter and guitarist Casey Kristofferson first chose

Hello Stranger: RiddleFest Celebrates Life and Work of Overlooked Musician and Song Collector

Lesley Riddle is an important yet mostly overlooked figure in the history of American music. A musician and folklorist, he collaborated with –and greatly influenced the Carter Family. As an African American who as key in the development of country music, he deserves honor and recognition. Now in its 12th year, the annual RiddleFest celebrates