Country Round-Up: 16th September

Here’s your round-up of all the latest country news!

MIRANDA LAMBERT

Miranda Lambert’s new album ‘The Weight Of These Wings’ will be released on November 18th on RCA Nashville. It will be her sixth studio album and her first for two years. Her previous release `Platinum’ won the Grammy for Best Country Album in 2015.

It’s not all good news however. She has been forced to cancel the last three dates of her `Keeper of the Flame` tour on doctor’s orders. She has been advised to rest her vocal chords for the immediate future. The dates in Corpus Christi, Austin and San Antonio may be rescheduled but no definite decision has been made in this regard.

BRAD PAISLEY

The ongoing “will he, won’t he appear in the UK” speculation is still to be resolved but Brad Paisley fans will be excited by the news that Brad’s concert which was part of his Country Nation College Tour event in West Virginia last Friday has been filmed. It will be released as a DVD later this year.

The concert was recorded as part of a series ‘Landmarks Live in Concert’ which features artists from all musical genres appearing in iconic venues. The company are planning to release concert DVD’s from Will I Am appearing at the Royal Albert Hall and Alicia Keys who appeared in New York City. Brad Paisley is the first country artist announced to be taking part in this project.

REBA

We have previously reported on the batch of Christmas Albums that will be released this year and wondered why Reba was releasing her version at the beginning of September. A quick glance of the Billboard Top Country Albums chart may provide clues.

It debuted at #27 and has risen this week to #25. We know that albums generally are not selling in vast quantities anymore but it seems clear that some folks either will buy anything that Reba releases or are quite happy to listen to festive music before the clocks have changed. What do we know??

AARON LEWIS COMMENTS

The ongoing debate about the chameleon that is modern country music has been taken up a notch again this week with Aaron Lewis’s comments about the artists that he perceives to be “choking all of the life out of country music”. He specifically dissed Luke Bryan, Sam Hunt, Dan + Shay and Cole Swindell . His comments were made on stage in Loveland, Colorado and were made before he performed ‘That Ain’t Country’ from his forthcoming ‘Sinner’ album

Lewis said “I’d like to thank Sam Hunt-oh, I know he’s so pretty to look at. I’d like to thank Luke Bryan, for most of his stuff – he surprises me every once in a while. I would like to thank Dan + Shay. I’d like to thank Cole Swindell. And every other mother-****er that is chocking the life out of country music”

Aaron Lewis is signed to Dot Records in Nashville which is part of the Big Machine Label group.  This label has been prominent in shaping the musical output that is favoured by most of the powerful US country music stations including much of the popular bro-country. He was formerly lead singer in rock band Staind and only moved across to country music in 2011 when he released a solo EP ‘Town Line’.

He has form for stirring up controversy. In 2012 Carrie Underwood was criticized for recording ‘Last Name’ as the lyrics didn’t represent herself. He suggested that the lyrics made her sound like a “complete whore”.

He has a new album to promote. It’s certainly got people talking about him.

BCMA AWARDS

As we come to end of the summer music festivals here in the UK, thoughts will inevitably turn to the next big event on the calendar. Whilst Nashville is gearing up towards the CMA awards we have our own version. The British Country Music Awards will take place on October 29th and 30th at the Concorde Suite Heathrow London.

Saturday 29th October will include performances and the Best of British Songwriters Night. The BCMA awards show will take place on the Sunday evening.

Tickets are £10 for Saturday’s events (free to BCMA members” and £20 for the awards show.

There are 13 categories of awards this year and as the build up continues to the event we will be highlighting the various entrants. Full details of the nominees can be found at www.bcmawards.co.uk

LAURA OAKES

Good to hear that Laura Oakes is releasing new music.

We had the chance to chat to her after she had supported Josh Kelley at the Borderline in London. Her new EP is almost finished. It has been recorded and is presently having the final mastering tweaks. It has five tracks and will be released later this year. As a taster she has streamed a new song ‘Going Somewhere’ on Facebook for a limited time.

It’s no secret that we consider Laura to be one of, if not the best female country singer-songwriter in this country and the new song reinforces this. Check it out on Laura’s Facebook page.

UK TALENT

There have been a number of musical highlights recently but we must mention a recent event that we attended in Manchester. We were present for the Gary Quinn / Luke and Mel tour which was as good as we expected.

The undercard featured Thorne Hill and Robbie Cavanagh. They performed separately as expected but Robbie also sang backing vocals on Thorne’s set (as he did at FSA Fest) . Thorne then sang backing vocals on Robbie’s ‘Which Way To New York’, and fortunately we managed to film it and have included it below.

If you know of any record label executives who are looking for new UK talent please direct them to this video. If this doesn’t showcase the superb untouched talent that we have in this country, nothing will. Great song and great vocals. Goosebumps time…….