On Wednesday, February 4, the Country Music Hall of Fame will announce its newest members. The genre’s highest honor, induction into the Hall of Fame is bestowed upon the absolute best of country music. In 1996 the CMHOF developed a set of categories to sort candidates, an effort intended to recognize the great breadth of the genre. The Hall will admit three new members in 2009, one each from the following categories: Recording and/or Touring Musician Active Prior to 1980 Performer, career achieved national prominence between WWII and 1975 Performer, career achieved national prominence between 1975-current Below are six living Country Music Hall of Fame candidates that deserve induction in 2009.
With more than a hundred chart hits to her name, including 25 #1 singles and 57 top tens, Dolly Parton is the most successful singles artist in country music history. But even before she was a hit on the radio as a singer, her songs had already been in heavy rotation. They were just sung by different artists. Throughout the past five decades, there have been countless versions of her songs recorded, so narrowing them down to six is no easy feat. It might be best to look at this list as an introduction, rather than a conclusion. Either way, these six cuts are essential listening. “The Last One to Touch Me”, Porter Wagoner from the 1971 album Simple as I Am Parton and Wagoner recorded quite a few of her songs together on their various duet albums, but Wagoner had a hit on his own with a Parton composition Read More
Belated though this post may be, it is richly deserved. In country music this year, Grandpa has been turning up everywhere. On the title track of Darius Rucker’s new album, he’s giving Darius sage advice that has sweetened his life considerably. He’s also sat down with Jamey Johnson for an afternoon with the photo album on “In Color”, and he’s telling his honeymoon tales to an impatient Brad Paisley. (I know “Waitin’ on a Woman” never mentions grandkids, but since the honeymoon was worth it, don’t you figure that a family had to be a part of the old man’s life?) Anyway, Grandparent’s Day came and went on Sunday, September 14, so we are here to honor the wise ways of our elders. Here are six songs that praise the name of dear Grandpa. What’s your favorite song about grandparents (you too, Grandma!) and their infinite intelligence? Grandpa Tell Me ‘Bout Read More
While there is a long history in country music of dealing with social issues, domestic violence was a topic that was taboo for a very long time. Indeed, when major artists started tackling the issue with pointed material, the songs remained album cuts. It wasn’t until Martina McBride’s “Independence Day” that the issue hit the radio airwaves, where it was deemed so controversial that the song peaked outside the top ten. Of course, when Garth Brooks had sung about a cheating wife being mowed down with a semi by her jealous husband the previous year, there wasn’t even a hint of controversy, and “Papa Loved Mama” went top five. There still hasn’t been a top ten hit dealing with the issue, though Miranda Lambert is threatening to change that. Here’s a look back at some significant songs dealing with domestic violence. “The Stairs”, Reba McEntire from the 1987 album The Read More
Early last week, I saw the traffic for this blog skyrocket. I was puzzled when I saw that this was due to more than 10,000 views in one day of an old Kellie Pickler single review. Bewildered, I dug a little deeper and found that the visitors had come here after searching for Mindy McCready, who I had mentioned as an aside in the review. Now, I don’t care for gossip and scandal, and I wish all those visitors were coming here because they were interested in Mindy McCready’s music. So I’m using McCready to kick off a new feature: Six Pack. In each Six Pack, six essential singles or tracks will be featured by an artist or on a particular theme. Mindy McCready made some great music back in her day, and I look forward to hearing more from her. Quite frankly, she deserves to be known by her Read More