Column

Easy Ed's Broadside

Exploring music without a map.

Since 2009, Ed has shared his thoughts on ND about music that touches him, and rambled hither and yon about what else is on his mind.

Easy Ed's Broadside

Exploring music without a map.

Since 2009, Ed has shared his thoughts on ND about music that touches him, and rambled hither and yon about what else is on his mind.

Make Americana Great Again: Why We Cherish Those Amazing Polls

In recognition of the (fading) ND community and because this is both what you knew would and did not want to happen. Let me be the first. Damn it EasyEd!  I can't believe you forgot Gurf Morlix, Rhett Miller, Michael Rank, Joe Ely, Mike June, The Bottle Rockets, Rod Picott and Kevin Gordon. Oh, and how could I forget the Deluxe Edition of the Complete Rush Box Set (pressed in 100% fracking-free Canadian virgin vinyl). 

 

 As Tiny Tim said on this holiday many years ago: "God bless us, everyone and tiptoe through the tulips."

Thanks Hal for doing exactly what I hoped you would. Kevin Gordon is someone I've completely missed; never heard a note although I've read great things. Don't know June or Rank. How could I miss a new Gurf? Will have to check the library. The others were just a one spin wonder for me. 

 

From KG's album Gloryland.

this is great Hal...I'm like Ed...keep reading good things about him, haven't heard a note...till now anyway...

Just read that that old Germanicana band the Scorpions is celebrating their 50th year and that deluxe reissues of six of their records have entered the German charts simultaneously, just in time for the ND year end poll.

those would have to be added to the list before I could possibly vote...in the meantime, someone rock me like a hurricane...

Germanicana...that is no doubt a category these days...

120,000 albums per year...thanks Ed...until now, I had no idea how fruitless my effort to stay abreast of the musical landscape was...it's a completely hopeless endeavor.  Oh well, I'm too old to change, so on we go...

If there's an award for most amazing voice, then Rhiannon Giddens takes the cake, and her record was the coolest thing I heard all year, until I heard Tom Russell's The Rose of Roscrae. 

 

 

Well...I'm having a hard time thinking of anything that tops that myself...sometimes I find Russell's lack of a melodic singing voice distracting, but it sure does work here...

As you and Ed have noted, we hear so little of what's released in a given period of time, and then there's gravitating back toward old favorites that can further limit us, which is often true for me.  I hadn't heard Rhiannon Giddens sing a note before taking a flier on her record and, my goodness, did her voice stop me in my tracks. Gorgeous voice.  She was out of my usual bailiwick, but not anymore. Have been a big Tom Russell fan for many years, that he maintains such a strong, high creative arc after so many records and years is a pleasure to watch and hear. Can't think of anyone else who could pull off a trilogy like The Rose of Roscrae, Hotwalker, and The Man From God Knows Where.  Almost performance art in spots.  The guy is really smart, inspired.

 

I have several of Russell's records...he's a great songwriter, and as you mentioned, inspired and smart...Rhiannon Giddens is an amazing singer and artist...it will be interesting to see what is next from her...

and as you also mentioned, part of my problem, which I'd geuess most of us share, is drifting back to old favorites whether old is 40 years ago or 4 days ago...nothing better than finding that record you can play over and over again and be inspired by the art and artist...

that photo really turns up the volume. thanks.

Please don't leave out Nathaniel Rateleff and the Nightsweats.  They are the most compelling band I have heard this year.  I didn't see Brandi Carlisle on your list either; The Firewatcher's Daughter is another triumph.

You should have trademarked this one, Ed.

Joey Ryan of the Milk Carton Kids at the AMA nomination ceremony - wearing a "Make Americana Great Again" cap.