Posts Tagged ‘Statler Brothers’
Monday, March 2nd, 2009
If anything, Jamie Dailey and Darrin Vincent are double trouble. In a good way, of course. The pair recently swept the SPBGMA Bluegrass Music Awards, a near-replica of their performance at last fall’s International Bluegrass Music Association Awards, where they claimed seven trophies. On March 31, they’ll release the followup to last year’s critically-acclaimed debut disc, aptly-titled Dailey & Vincent. The duo called from Nashville’s downtown YMCA to discuss their new album and touring plans for 2009 (and beyond). Sponsorships welcomed.
Brothers from Different Mothers is your second album together. Were there any shifts in approach or attitude this time around?
DV: We wanted to make the recording quality better. We’re trying to give the best performances we can give. We capture what’s in our hearts and capture the CD in a different light, to make it something that the audience will purchase and play over and over again.
“Head Hung Down” is a fascinating starting point—a man stuck in the rain trying to catch the train home to his beloved. The perfect introduction to a bluegrass album, don’t you think?
DV: Yeah. (laughs) Why we chose the song is, we recorded the whole record, but we didn’t have an upbeat barnburner to start the album. We were kind of stuck in the studio and we talked to Robert Gaitley and he actually had a song he thought would work that he’d written. He sent us over an mp3 of the song and I wrote down the lyrics, and within about an hour we’d laid out the arrangement. It’s amazing what technology we have these days.
JD: Darrin’s just great about sequencing the record. We want to record the best possible songs for the album, but he knows how to make it all fit.
Wednesday, December 31st, 2008
Expanding on Blake’s discussion last night, let’s end 2008 with a look back on our favorite country music happenings in 2008.
My personal favorite was this year’s stunning Country Music Hall of Fame inductee list. Gaining long overdue entry were Tom T. Hall, Emmylou Harris and The Statler Brothers, all of whom I’d been hoping to gain entry since the early days of Country Universe.
Speaking of Country Universe, it’s hard to believe that at this time last year, I was still the only writer. The contributions of Leeann, Blake, Dan and Lynn have transformed this site into something far beyond its humble origins. My goal is to be the worst writer on my own site, and they helped me achieve that goal in record time!
What were your favorite country music moments of 2008?
Saturday, November 15th, 2008
The CMA Awards should be the evening every year where country music is shown in the best possible light. However, it’s been many years now since the CMA fully took advantage of the opportunities that prime-time slot presents. Here are ten ways the show can get back on track, and maybe even be better than ever.
1. Expand the Ballot
Limiting the second ballot to only twenty entries per category was a disaster, resulting in some truly lackluster nominees. Take a page from the Grammy playbook and put all eligible submissions on the second ballot, regardless of vote total. Have the CMA voters choose five entries from a wider swath of nominees, and create a more level playing field for all of the labels, major and indie.
2. Limit the Number of Entries per Artist
The CMA can go one step further and improve the Grammy model by eliminating the first ballot entirely, and allowing each artist to submit only one entry, of their choice, for consideration. This will help avoid embarrassments like we saw this year, where Alan Jackson was represented in the Song of the Year category by “Good Time” instead of “Small Town Southern Man.”
3. Tighten up the Categories
Take the long-clamored for step of combining Vocal Duo & Vocal Group into one category. Limit to one the nominations an artist can get in the “New Artist/Horizon” category. Amend the antiquated Song of the Year loophole that allows a song to be nominated two years in a row.
4. Add Live Performance and Songwriter, Artist-Songwriter Categories
Eliminate the confusion caused by the Entertainer category, which has unfortunately morphed into a “biggest tour” award in the post-Garth era, by adding a Live Performance category. This will help focus voter attention on all dimensions of the Entertainer category. Create two new categories for songwriters - Songwriter of the Year and Artist-Songwriter of the Year. With artists and musicians already being honored individually, equivalent recognition for writers is long overdue. Create the separate categories to ensure that high-profile writers like Alan Jackson, Brad Paisley or Taylor Swift don’t overwhelm non-artist songwriters in the same category.
5. Move the Show Back to the Opry House
The scale of an arena is a total mismatch for a televised award show. The CMA Awards always sounded great in the Opry house, and it connects the show back with its own history and that of country music. If the show must be kept downtown, move it to the Ryman.
Category CMA Awards, Miscellaneous Musings
Tags: Alan Jackson, Brad Paisley, Carrie Underwood, Cindy Walker, Eddy Arnold, Emmylou Harris, Garth Brooks, Jerry Reed, Keith Urban, Mel Tillis, Ralph Emery, Shania Twain, Statler Brothers, Taylor Swift, Tom T. Hall
Thursday, November 13th, 2008
Last night, the CMA stamped its approval on the leading contemporary country stars of today. Congratulations to Kevin for commandeering the most popular live blog in Country Universe history. Here is a series of highlights (according to me) from an otherwise staid ceremony:
Best performance: “More Like Her,” Miranda Lambert; “Just a Dream,” Carrie Underwood. With understated brilliance, Lambert shifted gears by offering her Texas twang on the stripped-down ballad, while Underwood hit all the glory notes on her dramatic tearjerker with style and grace. Often pitted as rivals and polar opposites, the two proved that country music holds plenty of room for these two prodigious talents. Although Underwood ended Lambert’s faint hopes of claiming the Female Vocalist prize, bet on Lambert winning her fair share of CMAs in the near future.
Sound off: Repeatedly an issue, the Sommet Center’s sound system had problems again this year. Also, Nashville is a town of songwriters, but L.A. is a town of scriptwriters, and some intelligent, humorous ones would be welcome at next year’s ceremony.
Nashville’s full of musicians, too: Let’s tip our hats to first-time CMA award winner, Musician of the Year, Mac McAnally.
Tags: Alison Krauss, Billy Ray Cyrus, Bono, Brad Paisley, Carrie Underwood, Darius Rucker, Def Leppard, Eagles, Emmylou Harris, Ernest, George Strait, Josh Turner, Kellie Pickler, Kid Rock, Led Zeppelin, Lee Ann Womack, Mac McAnally, Martina McBride, Miranda Lambert, Pat Benatar, Rascal Flatts, Rodney Atkins, Statler Brothers, Sugarland, Taylor Swift, Toby Keith, Trisha Yearwood, Vince Gill, Wailers
Wednesday, November 12th, 2008
2008 CMA Winners
Entertainer: Kenny Chesney
Male Vocalist: Brad Paisley
Female Vocalist: Carrie Underwood
Album: George Strait, Troubadour
Vocal Duo: Sugarland
New Artist: Lady Antebellum
Vocal Group: Rascal Flatts
Song: Jennifer Nettles, “Stay”
Single: George Strait, “I Saw God Today”
Music Video: Brad Paisley feat. Andy Griffith, “Waiting on a Woman”
Musical Event: Robert Plant & Alison Krauss, “Gone Gone Gone”
Musician: Mac McAnally
Predict the Winners:
Kevin – 8
Leeann – 7
Blake – 7
Dan – 7
11:03 Thanks again for another great night. See ya at the Grammys!
11:02ish To Blake and Dan: A Song For You.
11:02 Blake: Down with our dictator!
11:02 Dan: Kevin sucks.
10:57 If I was a petty man, I’d be gloating about out-predicting all of my co-writers at Country Universe. Wait a minute. I am a petty man. I won! Yes! I won! This country universe is mine. Y’all just live in it. Suckers. (Except for you Leeann. You didn’t get all up in my grill, talking smack before the throwdown. You’re cool.)
10:56 ENTERTAINER – Kenny Chesney
10:54 Standing O for Shania. Good God, she’s beautiful. Welcome home.
10:50 So the only artist I see live who charges Eagles prices is Madonna, and I have to say that if she just stood there and growled, I’d feel ripped off. Come on, guys. Slap on some heels. Throw in some synchronized dancing. Jump some rope. Rub up against something. You’re supposed to be legends.
10:49 Dan: Once again, a washed up rock act gives us one of the better performances of the night. I like the Eagles, but that’s sad.
10:48 You know it’s bad when you’re hoping that Shania’s the surprise guest because you want to see some real country stars.
10:46 Paisley’s right about that. The Eagles have a lot more to do with country music today than most seventies country stars.
Category CMA Awards, Live Blog
Tags: Alan Jackson, Alison Krauss, Brad Paisley, Brooks & Dunn, Carrie Underwood, Dixie Chicks, Eagles, Emmylou Harris, George Strait, James Otto, Jason Aldean, Jennifer Nettles, Jerry Reed, Johnny Cash, Keith Urban, Kellie Pickler, Kenny Chesney, Kid Rock, Lady Antebellum, Lil' Wayne, Loretta Lynn, Mac McAnally, Madonna, Martina McBride, Marty McGuire, Pat Benatar, Pink, Rascal Flatts, Reba McEntire, Robert Plant, Rodney Atkins, Sawyer Brown, Shania Twain, Statler Brothers, Sugarland, Taylor Swift, Toby Keith, Trace Adkins, Trisha Yearwood, Wailers, Warren Zevon
Tuesday, August 12th, 2008
Flowers on the Wall
The Statler Brothers
Written by Lew DeWitt
Recent Country Music Hall of Fame inductees The Statler Brothers first polished their musical stylings singing gospel music, and Johnny Cash was so impressed with the group’s work at a 1963 show in Ohio that he invited them to join his tour. Two years later, they enjoyed their most famous success with “Flowers on the Wall”, the story of a man’s loss of romance and reality, and a perfect example of the quartet‘s ability to mix music with (dark) comedy.
Penned by founding member Lew Dewitt, “Flowers on the Wall” is full of desperate isolation as the abandoned narrator tells his former flame not to worry about him in the wake of her goodbye. The sarcasm reaches high level in the chorus, as he pretends that “counting flowers on the wall, that don’t bother me at all” while playing solitaire with a short deck and watching Captain Kangaroo. As he declares, “Now don’t tell me I’ve nothin’ to do”, his lost love must be sensing him slip. And as the song continues, he descends farther down into his own world, almost begging her to believe that “he’s havin’ quite a time” in the solitude of his room. His boredom borders on pathetic, but he still manages to maintain pride with a little wit and a lot of dishonesty.
The quirky cut connected with the country audience, reaching #2 in January 1966 and becoming the title track to the group’s first album, issued on Columbia Records later that year. The performance also won the quartet their first of three Grammy awards. They would continue to record and tour for over 30 years, even after the death of Dewitt in 1990, and also hosted their own highly-rated show on The Nashville Network in the 1980s.
“Flowers on the Wall” has become a popular culture magnet, gaining fame when Kurt Vonnegut dissected the lyric in his novel Palm Sunday and when Quentin Tarantino used the song in the movie Pulp Fiction. It has also received countless covers from artists such as Pat Boone and Nancy Sinatra, and country artist Eric Heatherly rode his remake to the Top Ten in 2000. But still, the Statler Brothers’ original remains the defining version.
“Flowers on the Wall” is the latest in a series of articles showcasing Classic Country Singles. You can read previous entries at the Classic Country Singles page.