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Thank You, Chris Neal

June 19, 2012 Dan Milliken 30

The country music community has lost a true beacon this week with the passing of Chris Neal, a superlative journalist and ally to independent blogs like ours.

As a ten-year staff writer for Country Weekly and a contributor to the Village Voice, Nashville Scene, Performing SongwriterThe 9513, and other publications, Chris helped set the standard for modern country music commentary, combining clear-eyed observations with his trademark acerbic wit. In a decade of confounding change for the genre’s industry and sound, he was a fearless voice of reason, equally comfortable celebrating country’s evolution and – no other word will do – “facepalming” over its less endearing new habits. His recent work as Senior Editor of M Music & Musicians has only broadened his impact, delivering on his passion for all varieties of good music.

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Single Review: Hunter Hayes, "Wanted"

June 14, 2012 Ben Foster 10

With song titles like “Storm Warning” and “Rainy Season,” one might very well wonder if Hunter Hayes had at one time been an aspiring meteorologist. At any rate, the frosty-haired twenty-year-old has been gradually making inroads on country radio with the support of his hordes of cheering female fans.

So far, it’s a familiar story: A strong voice crying out for strong material.

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