Short & Sweet
Glenn Alexander & Shadowland (CD, Rainbow's Revenge Records, 2016).
Touring the world as guitarist of the legendary Southside Johnny & The Asbury Jukes, Glenn Alexander has received extensive airplay and critical acclaim.
Now he evokes the soulful vibe of a historic honky tonk with guitar-driven, horn-laced, blues-drenched music.
(Shadowland is the roadhouse club in Wichita, Kansas where the first electric guitar debuted in 1932.)
Check out "I Picked The Wrong Day" @ YouTube!
All Sons & Daughters "Path Of Sorrow" (Video, 2017).
Leslie Anne Jordan and David Alan Leonard, aka All Sons & Daughters,
had a full and fun year in 2016 with taking the "Poets & Saints" album on tour.
In December, they were shocked and honored that it had been nominated for a Grammy for Best Contemporary Christian Album.
The duo is excited to share a new live video, "Path Of Sorrow," adapted from a hymn lyric drawing on the strength of God in the midst of suffering.
Check out the video @ YouTube!
Amsterdam Klezmer Band "Cocek a La Kopyt" (Video, 2016).
The Amsterdam Klezmer Band is looking back at a wonderful year in which they have celebrated,
together with fans throughout Europe and the Netherlands, their 20th anniversary with the new album, "Oyoyoy".
They also present with pride their brand new videoclip featuring singer Alec Kopyt in the
acoustic version of "Cocek a La Kopyt". Watch it @ YouTube!
Aranis "Smells Like Aranis" (CD, Home Records, 2017).
has been one of the innovators of new Belgian music in the last 15 years. For this album they once again changed course.
This time the point of departure has been the music of 90s cult grunge band Nirvana.
The theme of the original songs -- anger, madness, boredom, depression --
are brought together in a challenging and confrontational interpretation.
Listen to "Smells Like" @ BandCamp!
Auster Loo "Rhythm and Breath" (CD, Home Records, 2016).
The Belgian duo Auster Loo, consisting of Lydie Thonnard and Simon Leleux, was formed during a musical journey to Morocco in 2014.
Their music is a dialogue between the flute and the darbuka (goblet drum), between airy melodies and
stormy percussion, between past and present. Watch "Hilareziose" at Théâtre Molière @ YouTube!
Beyond the Fields "Perfect", "All I Really Need" (Video, 2016).
Switzerland's Beyond the Fields
had a rather quiet year with one of them suffering sudden hearing loss and another one with permanent damage to one of his hands.
Looking forward to playing live again in 2017, here are two samples recorded at the Lion, Bischofszell:
"All I Really Need"!
Iva Bittová & Čikori "At Home" (CD, Indies Scope/Pavian Records, 2016).
It took Iva Bittová
two years of fully focused but peaceful and joyful work to record a new album.
Three songs out of nine are in English; the lyrics for the title track were written by American poet Linda Gregg, whereas
"A Paper Cone" by renowned London critique Ken Hunt.
Listen to "Anděl" @ SoundCloud!
Norman Blake "Brushwood (Songs & Stories)" (CD, Plectrafone Records, 2017).
“The most hardcore, traditional musician I know,” according to T Bone Burnette, Norman Blake
toured and recorded with Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Kris Kristofferson, John Hartford and Vassar Clements.
He took part in 1973's "Will the Circle Be Unbroken" featuring the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band,
2000's Coen Brothers motion picture, "O Brother, Where Art Thou?", and
three additional T-Bone Burnett soundtracks, "Cold Mountain," "Walk the Line" and "Inside Llewyn Davis."
"Brushwood" introduces 19 new, original, old-time country songs, assisted by his partner Nancy, on the heels of Norman Blake’s "Wood, Wire & Words"
Grammy nomination for one of the five Best Folk Albums of 2015.
Luke Brindley "Quick Riffs: Gibson Montana Limited Edition Doves in Flight/Hummingbird Custom" (Video, 2017).
flew out to Chicago a couple of weeks ago and filmed a handful of fingerstyle guitar videos at Chicago Music Exchange
for their very popular YouTube series. Here’s the first video @ YouTube!
Steve Brooks "I’ll Take You Home" (CD, Frog Records, 2016).
60 years ago, a young man and woman met at a roller rink outside Houston, Texas. Their love story, covering half a century
and half the globe, provides the centerpiece for the fifth full length album by Americana singer/songwriter Steve Brooks.
Listen to the title track "I’ll Take You Home" at a song circle in 2011 @ YouTube!
Dave Burn "Arizona" (CD, Own label, 2017).
Dave Burn, former vocalist and guitarist of alt-country band ahab
emerges to create his eagerly awaited debut solo album "Arizona":
“The album I've always wanted to make, which I’m very proud of.”
Watch the acoustic version of "Fine Company" @ YouTube!
Conor Caldwell & Danny Diamond "North" (CD, Own label , 2016).
A duo album of these two Belfast born fiddlers, showcasing solely their fiddle sounds. Playing largely traditional Irish material - some long forgotten tunes found in old manuscript collections, others learnt in their childhood - the album with its duo fiddle sounds has a somewhat archaic feel to it. The quality of the playing is very high.
Mairi Campbell & David Francis "There's Some Wad Say" (Download, 2017).
Mairi Campbell and David Francis wrote "There's Some Wad Say" around the time of the Scottish referendum in 2014,
inspired by Robert Burns's "A Man's a Man for a That", taking the same content and rhyme but new words and tune.
Today it seems even more relevant. Download the free track
and accompanying lyrics!
Eliza Carthy & The Wayward Band "Big Machine" (CD, Topic Records, 2017).
English fiddler and vocalist Eliza Carthy first assembled the Wayward Band -
comprising Sam Sweeney (Bellowhead), David Delarre (Mawkin), Barn Stradling (Blowzabella), and many others -
in 2013 to promote her Best Of compilation, "Wayward Daughter".
It seemed inevitable that this 12-piece would set about recording an album featuring instrumentals,
Broadside ballads and contemporary songs.
Check out the sumptuous and searing "Fade and Fall (Love Not)" @ YouTube!
Susan Cattaneo and The Lucy Stone Singers "Sisters of A Different Skin" (Single/Video, 2017).
"However you voted, I think that one can’t ignore the fact that our country feels like
we’re in a place of transition. Personally, I’ve been feeling that this stuff is crazily out of my control.
And so I thought, what can I possibly do to make a difference? I decided to write a song."
So Susan Cattaneo
wrote about gender equality and women empowerment.
Hear the sound of 26 women singing (Lucy Stone was a suffragist and the first woman from Massachusetts to earn a college degree in 1847)
together @ YouTube!
Vic Chesnutt "Little" (Vinyl, New West Records, 1990/2016).
It's been 26 years since Vic Chesnutt's "Little" was released, and now you can get it along with 5 other LPs on
heavyweight 180g colored vinyl. Discovered by Michael Stipe of R.E.M. fame, Chesnutt was a prolific writer in the field of
contemporary acoustic folk and roots rock.
Download 12 classic cuts from The New West + Texas Hotel Catalog for free @
Corde Oblique "I Maestri del Colore Vol 2" (Digital EP, 2016).
Corde Oblique are glad to announce the digital release of the new EP "I Maestri del Colore Vol 2,"
including 5 unreleased songs and originally included in the sold-out physical limited edition (2CDs digibook).
Listen @ Amazon,
John Craigie "No Rain, No Rose" (CD, Zabriskie Point Records, 2017).
As Americana songwriter John Craigie says, “It is the job of the folksinger to present someone to the
audience that is relatable. To dissolve the wall between performer and listener as much as possible. People want to
hear your story, that in turn, is their story too. Music is not about making you feel better. It’s about making you
feel that you’re not alone.” The album title "No Rain, No Rose" is an ode to his hometown
Portland: “I took it from an old Buddhist saying ‘No Mud, No Lotus’, which basically means, you need the bad
things to make the good things. I changed it to reflect my rainy city of roses.”
Watch the album trailer @ YouTube!
Cruadalach "Waking Up" (Single/Video, U Rock / Universal Music Romania>, 2016).
"Waking Up" by Czech folk metal band Cruadalach
is the latest single from the album "Back to Life – A Tribute to Goodbye to Gravity",
All profits will be donated to the
victims of the Colectiv Club tragedy in Bucharest, Romania, on 30th October 2015,
when an unexpected fire from the pyrotechnics
during the release show of the Romanian metalcore band's "Mantras of War" album,
caused 64 victims (including 4 out of the 5 Goodbye to Gravity members).
"Waking Up" can be listened @ YouTube!
Boo Boo Davis "Live And Almost Unplugged" (CD, Black an Tan Records, 2016).
So far all of Boo Boo’s
records were cut in one take live in the studio, but without an audience. This is the
first release that is recorded live WITH an audience. Cafe de Amer is a small barn in the north of Holland.
The recordings were made with just one stereo microphone in the middle of a completely packed room.
Have a listen @ SoundCloud!
Nick Decesare "Openings" (CD, Own label, 2016).
Acoustic pianist Nick Decesare, inspired by classical, new age and jazz music (Keith Jarrett especially),
believes in the power of gentle solo piano music by helping to relax, relieve stress,
calm down and expand your consciousness. These 13 peaceful tunes on his debut album "Openings" are an
appreciation for the quieter parts of life that are not necessarily fostered by corporate America, 'the gain game.'
Brigitte DeMeyer and Will Kimbrough "Mockingbird Soul" (CD, BDM Music, 2017).
Nashville-based Brigitte DeMeyer and Will Kimbrough joined their voices six years ago and eventually
released their official duo recording: blues, gospel, early jazz and the country music those genres influenced, along with
bluegrass, early rock ’n’ roll, folk …
Check them out @ YouTube,
both are touring the Netherlands and the UK in March 2017!
Ani DiFranco "Deferred Gratification" (Single/Video, 2017).
While Ani DiFranco
is working on her memoir, she shot a video dedicated to
"the 44th president of the United States, Barack Hussein Obama, for being not just the spiritual
center of the third verse of this song, but for being the most awesome fucking human being any citizen could ever
have the privilege of voting for as their president. You lifted us up and you gave us our pride back. Goddess give
us the strength to harness that belief in ourselves now and go forward."
The song will appear on the new album, "Binary," to be released later this year.
Watch "Deferred Gratification" @ YouTube!
Eoin Dillon "Pondelorum" (CD, Own label, 2016).
This is the former Kíla
uilleann piper Eoin Dillon’s
third solo album. Ten new compositions are transcending the borders of traditional Irish music and are creating a world of its own,
accompanied by no less than 16 other musicians including trombone and harpsichord.
Listen to Eoin accompanied by guitarist Graham Watson live @ YouTube!
Divanhana "S one strane Plive" (Video, 2016).
new video made by Al Jazeera Balkans (a 24-hour Bosnian-language channel broadcasting both regional and global news),
featuring the voices of the Pontanima Sarajevo Choir at the Church of Saint Anthony of Padua, Sarajevo,
has been going viral @ YouTube:
90,000 + views in just 2 weeks!
The song is being used as the official soundtrack for the documentary film "Zukva" to be released in 2017.
Fjøllmannjentun "Skattlandet" (CD, Etnisk Musikklubb, 2016).
Three ladies celebrate the old traditions of the interior of the Telemark region in Norway, on hardanger fiddle, vocals and "langeleik" an instrument in the zither family. A very traditional, nearly archaic album of songs and tunes, displaying the beauty of traditional Norwegian melodies in its barest. A long album with 23 tracks.
Dom Flemons "Before The Blues - Early American Fingerstyle Guitar", "The American Songster - The Many Voices of Dom Flemons" (DVD, Stefan Grossman's Guitar Workshop, 2016).
Raised in Phoenix, Arizona, Dom Flemon began to play in local coffee houses and became a regular performer on the Arizona folk music scene.
As a founding member of the Carolina Chocolate Drops, an African-American string band, Dom was able to
explore his interest in bringing traditional music to new audiences.
"Before The Blues" is an instructional tool for people who are interesting in finding different ways to approach American
vernacular guitar; many of the styles of fingerpicking and strumming used by the early songsters incorporated parts of the banjo techniques used in old-time music.
Watch "Steel Pony Blues" @ YouTube!
"The American Songster" reexamines Dom's love of folk music, blues, jazz, jug band music and country music.
Check it out @ YouTube!
The Flyin' A's "You Drive Me Crazy" (CD, Flying-A Records, 2016).
First there were a couple of unusual hurdles for husband and wife duo Hilary and Stuart Adamson to surmount.
Major League baseball team Oakland A’s called out the lawyers when the duo trademarked their
band name (which derives from the cattle brand of Stuart’s family’s West Texas ranch).
Consequently titled "You Drive Me Crazy", the album is an intimate collection of folk, country and tex mex.
Four Voices "Diamonds and Rust" (Video, 1993).
Acclaimed artists and longtime friends Joan Baez,
Mary Chapin Carpenter,
and Emily Saliers (Indigo Girls)
will share the stage in a special group performance as Four Voices in June 2017.
Their friendship began over twenty-five years ago.
Check out "Diamonds and Rust" in Newport 1993 @ YouTube!
Eamon Friel "Takeaway" (EP, Thran Records, 2017).
Northern Irish singer/songwriter Eamon Friel
often writes about his life and experiences. The story behind ‘Takeaway’ as told by Eamon:
It was the year I did my A levels. I went to London looking for a summer job. It was the first time I’d been away
from home on my own.
My cousin ran a public house in Clapham and he put me up for the duration. There was a man who dropped into the
bar now and then. He was called Mister Woo. He was London Chinese and the owner
of a nearby takeaway. He was also the cook and he needed a chief bottle washer! That was me.
Mister Woo had one major eccentricity. When he was cooking, he sang. He sang all sorts of songs - pop songs, show
songs, even bits of opera, but his speciality was little jingles he’d make up about the menu. I’d be out at the
counter serving. I’d hear Mister Woo’s Cockney tenor drifting in from the kitchen, so I’d join in just for the laugh.
We even tried a routine, a little song and dance act, out front when things were slow.
Rayna Gellert "Workin’s Too Hard" (CD, StorySound Records, 2016).
Growing up in a musical family, Rayna Gellert turned to Appalachian old-time music at a young age, becoming a prodigious fiddler
and leading a new revival of American stringband music through her work with the acclaimed American roots band Uncle Earl.
"Workin’s Too Hard" pulls from the tradition, but the songs are all her own and
the arrangements are built on a collaboration with Nashville songwriter Kieran Kane.
Rayna performs the title song with Kieran Kane, Kai Welch, and Jamie Dick @ YouTube!
Eliza Gilkyson "The Great Correction" (Video, 2017).
latest video, set to her song “the Great Correction” from the album “Beautiful World”,
features a collection of photos depicting the brave souls who fought for racial, gender, and economic
justice as well as environmental sustainability throughout US history.
Given the current state it is unfortunately more relevant than ever.
Eliza screened the video at Folk Alliance International’s 2017 conference,
“Forbidden Folk: Celebrating Activism in Art,” where she co-hosted a panel with
Billy Bragg titled “Contemporary Protest: Music, Politics and Activism.”
View "The Great Correction" @ YouTube!
Guo Gan - Aly Keita "Peace in the World" (CD, Felmay Records, 2016).
Erhu virtuoso Guo Gan (Chinese violin with two strings) has become accustomed to unusual and unexpected
This time he met balafon master Aly Keita (West African xylophone of the griot tradition),
who generates a rhythmic-melodic support to Guo Gan's lyrical flights.
Listen @ YouTube!
Noah Guthrie "Cover Me Up", "Love On The Brain" (Video, 2016).
Since finishing the European tour in September 2016, Noah Guthrie has been busy getting his new album, "The Valley,"
finished and ready for release. In the meantime, he has posted two new covers of songs,
Jason Isbell's "Cover Me Up"
and Rihanna's "Love On The Brain"!
Hat Check Girl "Two Sides To Every Story" (CD, Gallway Bay Music, 2016).
Hat Check Girl is the collaboration between two seasoned performers,
and Peter Gallway.
Their 6th release, "Two Sides To Every Story", is a beautiful collection of ten songs, written in pairs,
collected in 5 chapters, with interludes and an epilogue. See YouTube playlist!
P.S.: Annie Gallup's 11th solo recording is scheduled for spring 2017.
Michael Hearne "Red River Dreams" (CD, Howlin' Dog Records, 2016);
Shake Russell "Little Bright Band of Light" (CD, Howlin' Dog Records, 2016);
Michael Hearne & Shake Russell "Only As Strong As Your Dreams" (CD, Howlin' Dog Records, 2016).
Michael Hearne and Shake Russell are originators of the Southwestern Americana sound and
performing together regularly, both around their home state of Texas and beyond.
Their “The Highway Is a Friend of Mine” is a great picking song and classic traveling troubadour tune.
Check out Shake Russell & Michael Hearne live from McGonigel's Mucky Duck Houston @ YouTube!
Helsinki-Cotonou Ensemble "The Road is Long - Live at Savoy Theatre" (Vinyl/Digital LP, Osuuskunta No Problem! Music, 2016).
In 2012, Helsinki-Cotonou Ensemble
started mixing Beninese drumming and vocal traditions with funk, jazz and soul, and thus creating new music in the process.
Watch the title song and opening track of Helsinki-Cotonou Ensemble's live album
recorded on New Year's Eve 2015 at the Savoy Theatre, Helsinki
Steve Hussey & Jake Eddy "The Miller Girl" (CD, Merf Records, 2017).
The debut album from the dynamic duo of veteran singer-songwriter Steve Hussey and 17-year-old multiinstrumental
bluegrass prodigy Jake Eddy. A concept album that starts with an individual who is lost and confused and end up
delivered at the end of the album. Check out "Into The Ether" @ YouTube!
Janice Lacy Project "Sanctuary for the Soul" (CD, Shore Light Records, 2016).
"I want my music to serve as a sanctuary, a refuge, a place of savety, peace, healing and joy, where listeners
can go when they need to escape from the pressures and stress of the world around them."
New age pianist Janice Lacy joined forces with Southern Californian musicians, especially cellist Jeness,
to create gentle and melodic instrumental music.
Sarah Jarosz "Jacqueline" (Video, 2017).
2017 has been off to a busy start! Sarah Jarosz,
Jeff Picker (bass) and Anthony da Costa (guitars) had an amazing time touring in the UK and Ireland.
Watch Sarah Jarosz (with Chris Thile, Rich Dworsky, Brittany Haas, and Paul Kowert) sing "Jacqueline"
on the A Prairie Home Companion show in January @ YouTube!
Jenny & Tyler "For Freedom II" (Digital EP, 2017).
Three years ago, Jenny & Tyler
released a covers EP called "For Freedom"
to raise awareness and funds for International Justice Mission (IJM),
a human rights organization that works to combat human-trafficking and modern slavery.
Right now, "For Freedom II" has been released digitally only; you can purchase it @
Watch The last track "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" (featuring Kris Allen) @ YouTube!
Ivas John "Good days a comin" (CD, Own label , 2016).
An appealing blend of folk, country, bluegrass and blues presented by this American singer/songwriter. The album has a lot of flair to it; the music feels relaxed, Ivas John's singing and fingerpicking is distinctive and full of personality. Most of the songs are written by the singer, and he is joined on the album by dobro, fiddle, bass and drums.
Seth Kibel "New Waltz" (Video, 2015).
American clarinet player Seth Kibel
has just launched two new projects - a duo collaboration with percussionist Tom Teasley
doing some klezmer, some jazz, some electronics, and a whole lotta improvisation;
and a brass band doing some rock, soul, dixieland, blues, and other American roots music!
Furthermore, Kibel's song, "New Waltz" off his album "No Words," won the Grand Prize for
the Mid-Atlantic Song Contest sponsored by the Songwriter's Association of Washington (SAW).
Here's the winning song @ YouTube!
Kíla "Raise the Road" (Video, 2016).
had a great 2016. Highlights were the amazing gig in Toulouse - Rio Loco in July, down by the river Garonne
with 10,000 people dancing and hopping to our music.
Here's a link to the song 'Raise the Road'!
Another highlight is that Kíla managed to finish a new live album; review is forthcoming!
Libby Koch "Just Move On" (CD, Berkalin Records, 2016).
A job at a large Houston law firm convinced Libby Koch that music, not law, was her true calling.
She crafted an album of true cryin’ and leavin’ country songs, the kind that make you feel good about feelin’ bad.
Check out the "Just Move On" album release @ YouTube!
Tomáš Kočko & Orchestr "Na konci dní" (Video, 2016).
Tomáš Kočko has turned to Veles, the master of the afterlife who guards order and time.
Watch "Na konci dní" (At the End of Days), the second music video from 2016's "Velesu" album
KV Express "Zafon" (CD, Home Records, 2017).
KV Express is a project of the diatonic accordionist Sophie Cavez,
with her compositions inspired by traditional music and the writings of the Spanish novelist C. Ruiz Zafòn.
Check out "Zafon"
Michael Lanning "Modern Sounds in Love & Cynicism" (EP, Lily Bird Music, 2016).
Michael Lanning, a top session vocalist for TV and radio commercials, wanted to go retro
and create something he don't get to do very often: original swing music!
The 5 track EP "Modern Sounds in Love & Cynicism" had been a rapid fire journey,
recorded in only 4 hours, all live in the studio.
Johanna Lillvik "Johanna Lillvik" (EP, Paraply Records, 2017).
Though having written songs from an early age and performing as a singer in various projects for many years
(watch her @ YouTube!),
this is the first time ever that Johanna Lillvik unravels her poetry and compositions.
Five high-quality tracks, as varied as can be (pop, jazz,...), still looking for a common denominator.
Lowland Hum "Palm Lines" (Video, 2016).
spent the summer of 2016 creating their third full-length album. "Thin"
is due out in February 2017. They will support the release with a tour in the first half of 2017.
See the "making of" video;
see the music video for the first single, "Palm Lines"!
Tara MacLean "Evidence" (Download, 2016).
Tara MacLean is a Canadian singer/songwriter who has been on the music scene for over 20 years.
After having taken a hiatus to have her three children, she has emerged to reconnect with her loyal
fans and meet new ones.
Enjoy this rare collection of songs from her past, as well as unreleased treasures from her vault @
Watch Tara performing the unreleased "Child" for a 2000 Vancouver TV special @ YouTube!
Aimee Mann "Goose Snow Cone" (Single/Video, 2017).
With her upcoming album "Mental Illness," Aimee Mann
returns to her acoustic roots and lyrically barbed songs. “I assume the brief on me
is that people think that I write these really depressing songs,” Mann says. “So if they thought that my songs
were very down-tempo, very depressing, very sad, and very acoustic, I thought I’d just give myself permission to
write the saddest, slowest, most acoustic, if-they’re-all-waltzes-so-be-it record I could…”
Watch the official video to the album’s lead single, “Goose Snow Cone,”
Dave McGraw & Mandy Fer "Guitar Talk: Mandy Fer on Encouraging Women to Play Guitar", "Acoustic Guitar Presents Mandy Fer and Dave McGraw" (Video, 2017).
The new album "Off-Grid Lo-Fi" is an intimate exploration into the genres of folk and indie rock.
Recorded entirely with solar and wind power on a nearly uninhabited island in north west Washington.
was interviewed by Acoustic Guitar Magazine
about being a woman guitar player; the duo also recorded a video session in their studio of Mandy's tunes
"Trainwreck" and "Magnolia Trees".
McPeake "Gypsies in the Wood" (EP, Piper4 Records Ltd, 2016).
McPeake are an indie-folk band from Belfast, Northern Ireland, featuring Francis McPeake IV (uilleann pipes, low whistles),
Mairead Forde (fiddles) and Paul Hughes (vocals, guitar). McPeake’s music nods to the past generations of the
iconic McPeake Family (Francis McPeake I penned "Wild Mountain Thyme/Will Ye Go Lassie Go")
but has journeyed to new territory and created their own sound.
Check out "Evolution" @ YouTube!
John McSherry "The Seven Suns" (CD, Compass Records, 2016).
John McSherry is regarded as one of the finest uilleann pipers
At First Light,
His second solo album - featuring musicians such as Sean Óg Graham, Mike McGoldrick and Niamh Dunne -
is once again pushing the boundaries of Irish music while at the same time being
inspired by megalithic sites such as Newgrange etc.
Check out "The Atlantean" @ YouTube!
Mehmet Polat Trio "Ask your heart" (CD, Home Records, 2017).
The Mehmet Polat Trio
- a spiritual bridge of ud, ney and kora sounds from the Middle East and Balkans to Africa and Latin America -
is counting down for the new album ‘Ask Your Heart’, expected to be released in Spring 2017.
Watch Mehmet Polat, Sinan Arat and Dymphi Peeters live in
@ Podium Mozaiek, Amsterdam
and their new official clip 'Everything is in you'!
Tift Merritt "Heartache Is An Uphill Climb" (Single/Video, 2017).
To celebrate the release of her sixth studio album, "Stitch Of The World,"
curated a collection of both old and new favorites. Download for free @
Watch the official video for "Heartache Is An Uphill Climb" @
Jaime Michaels "Once Upon A Different Time" (CD, Appaloosa Records, 2016).
C. Daniel Boling "These Houses" (CD, Berkalin Records, 2016).
Both these recordings possess warm and sensitive vibes - thanks to Jono Manson and his Kitchen Sink-Studio in Santa Fé.
Jaime Michaels is a splendid storyteller, his tales packaged in winsome music.
Listen to the "Once Upon A Different Time" CD medley @ YouTube!
C Daniel Boling 
draws comparisons to his hero Pete Seeger (We can't always win, but we never retreat;
sing it beginning to end and repeat.), and likewise he is happy to make his audience sing too.
Check out "I Brought the War with Me", featuring Pakistani musician Ali Mohammad playing shankha
(a conch shell used in the past as a war trumpet, it is said that when the shankha is blown it announces the victory of good over evil)
Miss Tess "Baby, We All Know" (CD, Rights Records, 2016).
“Many times after the show, somebody will come up to compliment the band and ask me what kind of music we just played.
After mumbling through a few different genres I usually just tell them it’s my music and hope they enjoyed the show.”
Miss Tess & The Talkbacks continue to explore her own personal crossroads of American roots music,
infused with classic country and blues, jazz and swing, cajun and R&B.
Check out the Kickstarter video @ YouTube!
Misty Mountain String Band "Red Horizon" (CD, Own label, 2016).
Their newest release, "Red Horizon," is focused and tempered from the band's years of performing,
combining the melodic clawhammer style of Paul Martin with the progressive fiddling of Neal Green.
Check out The Misty Mountain String Band @ YouTube!
Cary Morin "Tiny Town" (CD, Own label, 2015).
"A man and a guitar, a lot of soul, and an understanding of the history of soulful men with guitars in American
music can sometimes achieve this kind of timelessness in their work”, comments Richard Higgs of Public Radio Tulsa
on Crow tribal member and acoustic fingerstyle guitarist Cary Morin (ex The Pura Fé Trio).
“Cary Morin has the chops and is one of the best acoustic pickers on the scene today, his performances would
stand out, variously, among the old-school delta blues pliers, the Greenwich Village folk crowd at the end of
the 50's, the back-to-nature bards of the late 60's, or today's thriving singer-songwriter scene, Morin
references all these styles, they're in his vocabulary, but he's no dilettante, his engaging sound is his alone".
Check him out @ YouTube!
Peter Mulvey "Are You Listening?" (CD, Righteous Babe Records, 2017).
2017 marks Peter Mulvey's 25th anniversary in the music business with a great new album produced by Ani DiFranco.
(In 2015 Peter was opening a run of shows for
Ani when the shootings at the Emanuel Church in Charleston occurred. Peter wrote “Take
Down Your Flag”. Ani sang it two days later, and substituted her own verse.
Their versions were posted to YouTube and over the next few
weeks, hundreds of songwriters added their own versions.)
Acoustic Guitar Magazine recently asked Peter to do a video session displaying his mastery of alternate
tunings and unexpected chordal voicings: AcousticGuitar!
Chris Murphy "The Tinker's Dream" (CD, Teahouse Records, 2017).
Born into an Irish-Italian family in the Bronx, Chris Murphy
has made a living by playing the violin for 25 years. "The Tinker's Dream" provides both
the Chieftains-like soundtrack to a gentle stroll through Old Ireland and the
hustle and bustle in the pubs and clubs of Boston and New York.
Have a listen @ YouTube!
Danni Nicholls "Beautifully Broken" (Video, 2017).
British singer/songwriter Danni Nicholls is excited to show her new music video for "Beautifully Broken"
from 2015's "Mockingbird Lane" @ YouTube!
She performed the song at the Americana Music Association Awards in London,
but unfortunatly had to leave the Best Album Award to British-American duo Lewis & Leigh.
Anyway, Danni is thrilled and proud to announce that she is going to perform at Denmark's Tønder Festival in 2017. Watch out!
Nisia "Pandora e cumpagnia" (CD, Home Records, 2017).
On their second album "Pandora e cumpagnia," Nisia (singer/percussionist Emanuela Lodato and double bassist Vincent Noiret)
are paying tribute to the rich musical traditions of Sicily and the South of Italy.
Featuring accordionist Virginia Maiorana and piper-flutist Antonio Putzu.
Check out Nisia @ YouTube!
Richard Osborn "Endless" (CD, Tompkins Square, 2017).
Richard Osborn has studied and performed with the legendary Robbie Basho
in the early 1970's, then disappeared from view due to a severe hand injury. He continues Basho's
free raga style, inspired by folk traditions as well as the classical music of East and West,
on his new album. Please check out
Richard Osborn's YouTube Playlist!
O'Steam "Electric Folk Ballroom" (CD, Home Records, 2017).
Accordionist Fabian Beghin and violinist Damien Chierici offer novel Celtic style musical arrangements, by associating their
electrified acoustic instruments with pedals to produce unorthodox effects (disto, whammy, Mellotron simulator, delay, etc.),
- as Jimi Hendrix or Jimmy Page might have done if they had played the accordion or the violin.
Watch O'Steam live @ YouTube!
Tom Paxton "Life" (Video, 2016).
may have trimmed his touring schedule, but he is far from done writing songs and performing.
On his forthcoming album "Boat in the Water" he features new songs co-and a few from the past that were calling back to him.
Watch "Life" written in 1975 to be included on "Boat in the Water" @ YouTube!
Klô Pelgag "Les ferrofluides-fleurs" (Single/Video, 2017).
has released a new single along with a music video. "Les ferrofluides-fleurs" is the second track off her most recent record
"L'Étoile thoracique" which is now officially released in France, Switzerland and Belgium (CD review is in the pipeline).
Watch it @ YouTube!
Noam Pikelny "Universal Favorite" (CD, Rounder Records, 2017);
Julian Lage & Chris Eldridge "Mount Royal" (CD, Free Dirt Records, 2017);
Chris Thile & Brad Mehldau "Chris Thile & Brad Mehldau" (CD, Nonesuch, 2017);
Yo-Yo Ma, Chris Thile, Edgar Meyer "Bach Trios" (CD, Nonesuch Records, 2017).
Banjoist Noam Pikelny
of Americana supergroup Punch Brothers
has three previous recordings which were full-band affairs, so "Universal Favorite" is truly his solo debut.
It features only the man himself, and for the first time in his career, he even sings. Pikelny
calls "Universal Favorite" "my musical manifesto. It's the most personal statement I've put forward.
The setting couldn't be more stark, and I think it lays bare my musical core."
Watch The Making Of Universal Favorite
and Noam performing "Waveland" on A Prairie Home Companion!
Noam's fellow Punch Brothers are equally busy. Guitarist Chris Eldridge released his second full-length collaboration with jazz guitarist Julian Lage, venturing into gospel, old-time and bluegrass ("Bone Collector"). Mandolinist Chris Thile teamed up with jazz pianist Brad Mehldau ("Independence Day") and cellist Yo-Yo Ma ("J.S. Bach's Trio Sonata No. 6 in G Major, BWV 530: I. Vivace").
Bill & Joel Plaskett "Solidarity" (CD, Pheromone Recordings, 2017).
Joel Plaskett is a veritable indie rock icon in Canada and multiple JUNO Award winning songwriter, but for his new album,
he went a bit rootsiers, heading into Americana territory to collaborate with his elder folk-music-loving father Bill. Says he:
"A touch of the traditional mixed in with the new, and a lot of the unexpected, arrived at through experimentation."
Watch album trailer
and live title track!
The Rifters "Architecture of a Fire" (CD, Howlin' Dog Records, 2016).
Rod Taylor, Don Richmond and Jim Bradley joined forces in 2002,
playing in the dance oriented Americana music scene of northern New Mexico.
The Rifters employ a wide range of acoustic and electric instruments, combined with soaring three-part harmonies, providing
a true voice of their region of high desert vistas and mountain majesty.
Listen to the title track "The Architecture of a Fire" @ YouTube!
David Rovics "1848" (Video, 2017).
»1848 was a damn good year for pitchforks. A coalition of peasants, workers and the petit bourgeoisie grew massive
and chopped off the heads of monarchs throughout Europe. This is the continent-wide rebellion that led directly
to social democracy as Europeans know it today. The ruling class learned that it's better to share the wealth a
bit than to get your head chopped off. The repercussions of this European rebellion were global, leading
to many political reforms in the US, Australia and elsewhere.«
Listen to "1848" @ YouTube!
If you'd like to help David record this and 20 other new songs in a studio with a band, feel free to contribute to the
Punk Baroque Album Project.
Runaway Horse "Beautiful Blue" (EP, So Plum Music, 2016).
Singer-songwriter Mari Tirsa blends earthy vocals with ethereal keyboards, guitars and percussion to create a hypnotic vibe.
Watch Runaway Horse performing the title track "Beautiful Blue" at the 2014 East Austin Festival
Rachael Sage "The Tide" (Digital EP, MPress Records, 2017).
Fresh off the heels of a lengthy tour of both the US and Europe supporting her 2016 full-length album "Choreographic",
Rachael Sage returns to her folk roots with a 5-track collection of timely protest songs.
The release includes topical subject matter related to the Orlando shooting, Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel’s passing,
the Syrian refugee crisis and the controversial 2016 US Presidential
election. Sage states: “Like so many of my artist peers, each of these intense and often overwhelming situations sparked so many emotions
and crystallized my need to respond musically in a more traditional, folk-driven way. At their essence, these are
protest songs I wish I hadn’t had to write.”
All proceeds will be donated to ArcLife.org (American Refugee Committee), one of the world's leading international refugee assistance organizations.
Get "The Tide" @ iTunes!
Jennifer Saran "Wake Up" (Single, 2016).
“It’s time to Wake Up!” Californian singer-songwriter Jennifer Saran has teamed up with South African
choral group Ladysmith Black Mambazo
and guitar legend Carlos Santana
to create her newest single, a heartfelt appeal to address inequality and impoverishment,
Proceeds from sales of the song, which is available now on iTunes, will go directly to the
The Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation.
Check out @ song and interview!
Tom Shed "Davey's Cornet" (CD, Curly Maple, 2016).
Guitar and banjo player Tom Shed is supposed to sing about real things.
Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is supposed to change a live forever.
So listen to "Davey's Cornet," the true story of a veteran who found a way to leave the war behind,
on WLRN Folk Music Radio @ YouTube!
Nancy Shoop-Wu "Rainbow Road" (CD, Lei Hoku Music, 2017).
Classically trained violinist Nancy Shoop-Wu wrote the tunes on "Rainbow Road"
to uplift and transport the listener's heart to a different world - the world of beauty and
wonder that lies within us all. "Rainbow Road" effortlessly blends new age melodicism
with the magic of the Hawaiian Islands (featuring acclaimed slack-key guitarrists Jeff Peterson and Ian O'Sullivan).
Watch her relaxing music @ YouTube!
Show Ponies "How It All Goes Down" (CD, Free Man Records, 2017).
Six years after their first gig as the Show Ponies, the California based Americana/folk/bluegrass band has now
debuted their most ambitious project to date, a folksy reflection on the End of the World.
Check out "The Time It Takes" @ YouTube!
Pete Sinjin "The Heart and the Compass" (CD, Own label, 2016).
Pete Sinjin grew up listening to Bob Dylan and Woody Guthrie, and those guys seemed pretty punk rock to him.
Sinjin's 4th album of original compositions drives his vivid stories home with arresting melodies that reflect his
affinity for troubadours such as Rodney Crowell, John Prine and Townes Van Zandt, as well as
punk-era greats as the Jam and Hüsker Dü.
Steep Canyon Rangers "Santa Fe" (Video, 2016).
In December 2016, the Steep Canyon Rangers
were honored to be a part of A Prairie Home Companion with banjo-playing actor Steve Martin,
cellist Yo-Yo Ma
and double bassist Edgar Meyer (see above).
Watch/Listen "Santa Fe" @ YouTube!
Steve ‘N’ Seagulls "Brothers in Farms" (CD, Spinefarm (Universal Music), 2016).
Steve ‘N’ Seagulls are, basically, a YouTube lark gone horribly wrong. Back in the summer of 2014
a bunch of Finnish musicians played a hillbillified version of AC/DC’s “Thunderstruck”
on their barnyard wearing the goofiest apparel possible and shot the darn thing on video. Eventually,
the video ramped up millions of views, landing the band on the websites and magazine pages of metal media.
The latest release "Brothers in Farms," including selected classics from
AC/DC, Steppenwolf and Guns N' Roses, went number 1 on the Billboard Bluegrass album chart!
Check out "Aces High" @ YouTube!
Nora Jane Struthers & Korby Lenker "Let's Just Have Supper" (Video, 2017).
The tense political climate in the US has already inspired plenty of topical songs,
but wouldn't it be better if we could all just come around a table for a meal and conversation?
Nashville singer-songwriters Nora Jane Struthers
and Korby Lenker found themselves less in the mood to agitate than to extend an invitation of sorts and
wrote their first co-write in the spirit of bringing people with opposing viewpoints together.
Watch "Let's Just Have Supper" @ YouTube!
Surrender Hill "Right Here Right Now" (CD, Blue Betty Records, 2017).
Surrender Hill is a duo out of Sedona, Arizona, made up of South African Robin Dean Salmon and Alaska-born Afton Seekins.
Surrender Hill has just completed their 2nd album, “Right Here Right Now”,
a cozy mix of country music and roots rock based on acoustic guitar and vocals.
Seth Swirsky "Circles and Squares" (CD, Grimble Records, 2016).
A renowned pop songwriter, Seth Swirsky has written hits for a wide array of artists including Smokey
Robinson, Al Green, Olivia Newton John, Celine Dion, and many others. Himself
part of the acclaimed pop duo, The Red Button, wrote, played and produced 16 newly minted pop gems.
Sean Taylor "Codeine Dreams", "Troubadour" (Video, 2017).
is excited to share two new songs and videos,
from his latest album "Flood & Burn": It is the story of my life as a travelling musician playing my songs to beautiful people all over the world.
The connection between film and music has always been a massive inspiration for Sean, see his new videos page @
Richard Thompson "Acoustic Classics Volume 1 (Sampler)" (Download, 2016).
career began in the 1960s as a co-founder of the groundbreaking British folk rock group, Fairport
Convention. From there followed a successful 30 years career
who tours both solo acoustic and with his electric trio.
Released in 2014, "Acoustic Classics Vol. 1"
is a collection of classic Richard Thompson songs, reworked for the acoustic guitar.
Watch "1952 Vincent Black Lightning" at the 2012 Americana Music Awards @ YouTube,
download "1952 Vincent Black Lightning," "Beeswing," "I Misunderstood" and "I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight" for free
In early 2017, Richard will release "Acoustic Classics Vol. 2 and Acoustic Rarities", including songs previously recorded
by other singers, some only available in a band format, and some only existing as cover versions.
Tinariwen "Elwan" (CD, Wedge / [PIAS], 2017).
Over the past years, Tinariwen's
homeland in the Saharan mountains that straddles
the border between Mali and Algeria has been transformed into a conflict zone,
forcing them into exile to record their 8th album, "Elwan" (The Elephants).
Every song evokes a lost world, such as "Ténéré Takhal" (What’s Happened to the Desert)
with its animal metaphor to describe militias and multinational consortiums who have trampled everything in their path.
Watch the lovely video @ YouTube!
Michael Tomlinson "House of Sky" (CD, Own label, 2016).
Soulful guitar music with a touch of Southern rock and late 1960s.
One of the songs elicited a touching letter of response from former US President Jimmy Carter thanking him for a song about
his humanitarian work around the world. Listen to "Seeds Of Love" @ YouTube!
Jenna Torres "Heart On Wheels" (Video, 2016).
Born and raised in NYC, country rock artist Jenna Torres has enjoyed a successful career writing songs,
including Ben Glover's chart hit “Busted Heart.”
Be sure to check out the music video for “Heart on Wheels,”
featuring Richard Turner of Southern rock band Blackberry Smoke,
from her soon-to-be-released album “Wild Sugar” @ YouTube!
Alberto N.A. Turra "Filmworks" (CD, Felmay Records, 2017).
Felmay Records decided to take a representative look at the fifteen years work of guitarist-composer Alberto N.A. Turra
devoted to the Seventh Art - music as soundtrack accompanying images for motion pictures.
Uniform "The Killing of America" (Video, 2017).
New York City duo Uniform's industrial thrash metal is not FolkWorld's cup of tea, but we support the sentiment:
There were 385 mass shootings (incidents where 4 or more people are injured or killed with a firearm)
in America in 2016 resulting in 450 deaths in total.
Listen and watch to "The Killing of America", the second single from Uniform's full-length "Wake In Fright"
9Bach "Yr Olaf" (Video, 2017).
Just before 9Bach released the "Anian" album,
they filmed a few songs live on the S4C programme Stiwdio Gefn.
Watch them performing "Yr Olaf" (The Last) live @ YouTube!
Lisa Jên from 9Bach gives some insight into "Yr Olaf" (The Last):
"Yr Olaf is a song inspired by a photo of Sudan - the last male white
rhino. In this song I’m questioning what kind of person are you that wants to destroy such an amazing thing,
who has pleasure in planting their dagger in leathery skin and enjoy the last glimmer in their eye.
I love singing this song, it makes me angry!"
Various Artists "A Tribute In Music and Song to John Bellany" (CD, Greentrax Recordings, 2015).
The late John Bellany (1942–2013) was born and brought up in Port Seton, Scotland, and went on to become a painter of international renown.
His father was a boat builder and many of John’s paintings reflect his connection with fishing and the sea (the album's front cover is Port Seton Harbour).
John also had a great love of music and in fact had a ceilidh band named The Blue Bonnets in his early years.
This Greentrax collection of music and songs is released as a tribute to the great man and many were John’s favourites.
Ft. Siobhan Miller,
Aly Bain and Phil Cunningham,
Davy Steele with Ceolbeg and Drinker’s Drouth,
Various Artists "Beránci a vlci / Rams and Wolves" (CD, Indies Scope, 2017).
This is a unique recording of traditional songs from Moravia, originating in a concert titled "Z kořenů k world music"
(From the Roots to World Music) which took place at the festival Folkové prázdniny in 2014.
Contemporary folklore is represented by the women’s choir Ženský sbor z Kudlovic from Eastern Moravia (Dolňácko)
and RukyNaDudy from Frenštát pod Radhoštěm (Beskydy), focusing on archaic musical instruments and playing styles.
These two groups are complemented by jazz musicians with a close relationship to folklore such as
the Jitka Šuranská Trio
and Sdružení nezávislých jazzmenů (The Group of Independent Jazzmen).
Watch teaser with english subtitles @ YouTube!
Various Artists "Celtic Colours Live Volume 4" (CD, Own label, 2016).
Cape Breton Island was adorned in the finest fall colours as the Celtic Colours International Festival
celebrated its 20th anniversary in October 2016. Special performances -- strathspeys, reel and puirt-a-beul --
were captured live from groups such as
Le Vent du Nord,
fiddlers such as
and singers such as
and Dougie McLean.
Check out Liz Carroll, Troy MacGillivray and Trevor Hutchinson live at Celtic Colours 2016
"Colours of Sound" (Documentary, 2017).
British-Indian sitar player Baluji Shrivastav has just received an OBE at Buckingham Palace from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II
in recognition of his work as "Musician, Instrumentalist and Founder, Inner Vision Orchestra, for services to music"
(his new album ‘The Best of Baluji Shrivastav’ is in the review pipeline).
The music documentary "Colours of Sound", directed by Marie-Cécile Embleton, is focusing on
the life and work of three blind London-based musicians from the Inner Vision Orchestra including
Baluji Shrivastav; Japanese viola player Takaski Kikuchi and Nigerian soprano Victoria Oruwari.
Watch the teaser @ www.coloursofsound.co.uk!
Various Artists "InFiné10 - Tomorrow Sounds Better With You" (CD, InFiné, 2016).
French record label InFiné (motto: easy music for the hard to please)
celebrates its first decade and curated a 19-track collection, ft.
Pedro Soler & Gaspar Claus,
and many more. Listen to playlist @ YouTube!
Various Artists "International Blues Challenge #32, 2016" (CD, The Blues Foundation, 2016).
The International Blues Challenge IBC is the world's largest
showcase and competition of the best new talent the blues genre has to offer by The Blues Foundation,
a Memphis based organization founded in 1980 whose mission is to preserve the blues heritage and
expand world wide awareness of this uniquely American art form.
The nine tracks on this CD were drawn from the 2016 IBC's sixteen solo/duo/band division finalists
(the result of a partnership between The Blues Foundation
and Frank Roszak Promotions).
Ft. Paul Deslauriers,
Ben Hunter and Joe Seamons,
Various Artists "Live From Austin, TX Country Mixtape" (Download, New West Records, 2017).
New West Records has curated the finest collection of recordings available from the Austin City Limits
television program. These recordings, culled from hundreds of performances from the 1970s
to the 2000s, represent a great treasures in American music. Now, in 2017, New West Records is pleased to announce
a variety of first time vinyl releases.
To celebrate, New West Records is offering a mixtape of some of the finest cuts from the country music genre, ft.
Download the Austin City Limits Country Mixtape @ NoiseTrade!
"Protection - Himalayan Buddhist Mantras" (CD, Felmay Records, 2017).
After previous releases, Felmay Records opens a new chapter in their exploration of the religious and musical traditions of North West India.
"Protection," in support of the Himalayan Cultural Heritage Foundation (HCHF) in Leh (Ladakh–India),
presents five mantras of the Himalayan region, sacred sound vibrations intended to connect the human with the divine.
Various Artists "Yep Roc Presents: Sounds From Folk Alliance International" (Download, Yep Roc, 2017).
In February verybody is heading to Kansas City, MO to
attend Folk Alliance International, one of the favorite musical events and conferences of the year.
Yep Roc teamed up with MerleFest to sponsor an official showcase, featuring Sara Watkins
... Download the “Sounds from Folk Alliance International”