• An entry where I whine about the Nashville Sound

    28 Jun 2007, 18:56 by jcshepard

    I admit I turn my nose up at the current crop of Nashville Pop Star wannabe's, which is really just a continuation of the 1960s perversity known as the Nashville Sound.

    Let's take the definition from Wikipedia:
    The Nashville Sound was pioneered by staff at RCA Records and Columbia Records in Nashville, Tennessee, including manager Steve Sholes, record producers Chet Atkins, Owen Bradley and Bob Ferguson, and recording engineer bill porter. They invented the form by replacing elements of the popular Honky Tonk style (fiddles, steel guitar, nasal lead vocals) with "smooth" elements from 1950s Pop music (string sections, background vocals, crooning lead vocals), and using "slick" production, and pop music structures.

    Singers Patsy Cline and Jim Reeves, along with pianist Floyd Cramer, were among the most famous of the artists leading the way to the smooth crooning style of the Nashville Sound's original era.

    Through the years, there's been a back-n-forth between the pop and roots camps. …
  • No Depression #62 - Still mostly whatever that is

    27 Feb 2006, 18:52 by jcshepard

    No Depression magazine is one of my must-reads. About 6 years ago I nixed my subscription to Wired when they went corportate just before the dot.bomb and pony'd up for ND, named after Uncle Tupelo's debut album No Depression, itself an old Carter Family standard.

    The ND tag used to read " whatever that is". I still like that better than the current "Surveying the Past, Present, and Future of American Music". What the heck does that mean? I think it means the publishers got bored fawning over creators--how many covers can Jay Farrar and Lucinda Williams adorn? Maybe they're going corporate, too. Maybe they felt the advert pressures from alternate alternates, like Harp. They have wandered a bit far afield even of for my taste, but it's still required reading for modern Roots Music.

    ND does best when Peter Blackstock & Grant Alden make you sit down and read the magazine more like a novel than a comic book. …