I won’t lie to you, I am having a very quiet morning after a particularly busy spell. Our album is complete, I have finished my run of Sunday Morning shows and am having an extended breakfast with Mrs. Ross, there’s a promise of a long walk already made to the dog and we’re playing Hand Picked Songs by The Louvin Brothers in the kitchen. So what is it about country music that makes it appropriate for any given mood? It suits the sunny day when you accept that life is really not so bad after all, it accompanies the devastation of loss perfectly and, so often, it seems to speak directly to the person who is just getting on with the mundanity of the everyday. But when I met up with Chuck Prophet yesterday he gave me the best answer yet…‘you’ve got to have your heart in the right place if you want to get it broken, and country music will do it for you.’
So thank you Chuck for articulating what I have felt in my bones for such a long time. On the subject of heartbreak we have Ray Charles, Tammy Wynette and Red Sky July standing ready to break yours and Marty Stuart and Flatt and Scruggs to get you back on the road again.
Our special guests this week are this family…
The Band Perry will explain how their music has taken country music by storm over the last couple of years in the States and how overnight success in country terms, sometimes takes a little longer than you might expect. You’ll like what you hear about The Perrys as we talk of the south, gothic literature and what to expect from your folks if you’re family decide to all be in the band at once.
I want to introduce you to an album that might well have taken over as my new favourite of this year. It comes from England and I do think you might just love it. The artist is Sweet Billy Pilgrim and no, they’re not from Nashville…Buckinghamshire actually.
And we’ll also take a quick skip past the shelves of John Peel’s Record Collection and see what gems lie lurking there. All from five past eight on Friday evening on BBC Radio Scotland
Peelies records……..Fantastic. First 100 up and we’re only up to Adam & The Ants !
Gobsmaked to see that he had the same APB albums that I have.
One helluva week for me last week, so I’m afraid I’m only just catching up with last week’s show – and blog! – now. Interesting musings on why country music speaks to every mood, and at its best I agree that lyrically there’s certainly a directness that connects with me in various ways and across various moods. That’s somehow complemented by its musical stylings, and I can’t help but wonder if there’s something about the development of country music that somehow enhances that sense of connection on a very basic human level.
Great to hear more on progress with the new album too! Sounds like you’ve earned that quiet morning, and I can vouch that long dog walks are at least as good for the soul as two hours of Another Country every week!
“Just one more thing…” to coin a phrase.
I loved that “Ode to Billy Joe” came up in conversation with The Band Perry, and that Bobbie Gentry’s sublime original got a play. This song made for my shiver-down-the-spine musical moment of the year (so far – I’ll add that qualifier since I’ll be at the Roundhouse on October 22nd!) as Rosanne Cash sang the song, accompanied in great style by John Leventhal on guitar, when she appeared at Union Chapel a month or so back. She proclaimed that if any song deserved to be #101 in “The List”, then “Ode to Billy Joe” was it, and then proceeded to belt out an absolutely blinding version.