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CSO Reviews & More 2010/2011
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Main Featured Artist / Band Extra Reviews & Stories

The Grascals & Friends

Cracker Barrel Old Country Store (and restaurant) has been putting out special releases of good music for a few years, this one is a real special treat. Picture the Grascals as the house band, they have recorded mostly older classic country covers, done very tastefully, with many special guests.

Craig Campbell 
Self-Titled Debut

Craig Campbell was born and raised in the small town of Lyons, Georgia. Being able to perform with Tracy Byrd and Luke Bryan helped him catch the break he needed to pursue his own musical career.

Keith Urban
Get Closer


When it comes to "country music", Keith Urban is living proof it doesn't matter what country your from, country music is country music and if Urban is singing it, all the better. Country music fans all over the world have embraced this adorable winner of Australia's coveted Aria Award...

Looking Forward…Looking Back

Yes, it is that time of year again. After a hurried year of worldly and personal events, it is time to pause and reflect on what music pleased for 2010...

Billy Currington 
Enjoy Yourself

If you are looking for an easy album, one you just set and play, then Billy Currington’s latest may win your vote. After all, Billy sells a zillion albums, nestles into the Billboard Chart...

Two Country Christmas Tunes and Artists Worth Checking Out

Meet Dean Crawford and Tommy Joe Wilson

Randy Houser 
They Call Me Cadillac

Randy Houser is the half hippie, half redneck, son of the south, he sings about in the song "Whistling Dixie." If your not from the south, his alluring voice, playful demeanor, and let's rock attitude, will have you wishing you were.

LoCash Cowboys in Joyland-Brandeton Florida

While visiting with my parents in Florida this past weekend, I was delighted to see LoCash Cowboys were appearing nearby. I'm always excited when able to catch up with this talented and extraordinary duo...

The Band Perry Launches CD in a Hometown Concert

Everybody's a buzz about 10/10/10. Several ethnic groups swear there is something magical about the number ten, and having the number ten times three has caused an outright fervor. The new group out of Greeneville, Tennessee probably doesn't need any luck since they have enough already and I can...

David Wood - Here & Now

Talk to most fans and the pulling power of country music is its honesty. Country music is homegrown real. There are stories, often life driven and open in the lyrics...

Cody McCarver - Benefit Concert for Operation Troop Aid

As a certified "military brat," I want to give Cody McCarver a heartfelt "hooah" for stepping up to the plate in support of Operation Troop Aid.

Easton Corbin - Concert Review

I'm sure you've been advised at some point in your life, to just "roll with the flow." Well, it appears newcomer, Easton Corbin, has heeded that advice and his ability to "Roll With It" ...

Rodney Atkins - Self Titled Album
Available Exclusively at Cracker Barrel

Native to East Tennessee and often called the "guy in the ball cap" or "the all American Country boy", Rodney Atkins is not only a talented singer and songwriter, but he is a loving husband, devoted father, and a man who takes pleasure in helping The National Council for Adoption...

Zac Brown Band - The Foundation

For a long time, I had been fighting this guys material, like, who is he? Covering all this stuff and sounding like Charlie Daniels, doing Southern Rock in his shows.

Joey + Rory = Album Number Two

The fact that we don't need last names to recognize the amazing 2010 ACM Award winners for Top New Vocal duo speaks volumes about who they are and naming their second album simply Album Number Two, isn't at all pretentious...

Allen Brown and The Long Hard Ride Band- Natural Disaster

In his bio, Brown says he "has stayed true to his love of 'Real Country Music' but has added his own flair that he refers to as 'allentude'"...

Hank III 
Rebel Within

One listen and you will quickly know. Hank III, born Shelton Hank Williams, is an acquired listen. However, on saying that, if you like what you hear from this stubborn modern day outlaw, one offering a punch and a kick to the established ideals of what many consider country music, then you’ll understand, and quickly, that it’s about the music more than the cha-ching of an in-tune industry cash register. more

Krysti Worley - "Cowman"

In 2001, this Texas talent released her debut single, “Cry Like A Baby”. The track created fan and industry interest, staying on the charts for 20 weeks and hovering around the Top 10.

Flynnville Train - Redemption

Flynnville Train's latest CD is titled Redemption, although I must admit I'm not sure where the titled comes from. So far I don't see anything these guy need to be redeemed of. Like their first self-titled CD,  this is full-throttle music with no fillers. Lead Singer Brian Flynn says; “Much of the album we recorded on first take and that reinforces the emotion, the translation of our hearts in each song.”  It also solidifies the fact that bands that kick-ass live should be able to kick-ass in the studio as well, and FT does.  more

Justin Honaman - Let Go & Let God

When we last visited the crooning Coca Cola exec several years back, Honaman had just released his debut, Saturday In The South, a CSO praised affair of pop country...

Joe Nichols via the Internet – Courtesy of CMT

CMT broadcasted Joe Nichols' fan club party LIVE from Nashville this morning. I signed on a little late due to the time zone difference but, luckily for me, the party started a little late so I didn't miss much. I logged on to my computer in time to hear him sing “It Would Be Her,” one of my all-time favorite tunes, and I was pleased to hear him say it was also one of his favorites.

Troy Olsen - Self-Titled Debut 

Where would you find a great, traditional sounding, country voice in the middle of a barren desert? Well, let me tell you where! Just look under the black hat of Arizona cowboy, Troy Olsen...

Merle Haggard - I Am What I Am

Merle Haggard's newest CD in five years is a refreshing acoustic affair with a touch of pedal steel and some electric pickin'. I had to fight to get a finished copy, but it was well worth the fight. Haggard is a smart man sticking with what is tried and true. His band, The Strangers, accompany him in his studio, the California "Shade Tree Manor Studio". Reggie Young helps out on guitar, with Rob Ickes on Dobro...

Marty Stuart and his Fabulous Superlatives - Ghost Train - The Studio B Sessions

In stores now, is one of the most classic country recordings that I have heard in a while...

Juni Fisher 

The extraordinarily talented, singer, songwriter, Juni Fisher, just might also be the most beautiful cowboy poet to ever saddle up and “Let 'er Go, Let 'er Buck,' Let 'er Fly." Her newest album, like her previous project, is a historically accurate music tribute that chronicles the old west; this time, it is the Pendleton Round-up and the women and men of early rodeo...

Coldwater Canyon - Just Gettin' Started

Coldwater Canyon Band is comprised of five handsome guys who know how to keep their fans on edge of their seats. Their new CD titled Just Gettin Started is not your typical country album...

Easton Corbi

Raised by his grandparents due to his parents’ divorce, Easton Corbin spent much of his early years working and playing on the family cattle farm. Although none of his family members played musical instruments, Corbin always knew that he wanted it to have a great influence on his life. “My grandparents liked to watch the Opry,” he remembers. “We’d start Saturday night off with ‘Hee Haw’ and then ‘Opry Backstage’ and then ‘Opry Live’.”

Joanna Mosca - Keep On Going

New York based Joanna Mosca, not only is a talented singer and songwriter, she's a loving wife and mother with a masters in hospital administration...

Josh Turner - Haywire

Josh Turner began choosing songs for Haywire, his fourth studio album, months before he began recording. While Turner had “Why Don’t We Just Dance” on hold with the publisher, someone else showed interest; therefore, he had to record it or he knew he may eventually have to give it up and move on...

Doug Bruce - A Good Place

In the hard-edged world of country music, many labor. There are those who win the tip jar gigs, the show fairs and the out of town music festivals. Some, prompted by family and money, get to cut an album...

Gold Heart - My Sisters and Me

This young group of sisters playing guitar, fiddle and mandolin along with their sweet three part Appalachian harmonies has put out their third full CD titled My Sisters and Me. This CD has a very full and professional sound and is an excellent job of recording and mastering...

Kelly Kenning - Broken Bones

I must thank the source. A shout out to Bobby Lopez, the award winning and genial host of the syndicated CD Tex Radio Show, heard on great American stations everywhere every week...

Carrie Underwood - Play On

In a local Nashville radio interview, Underwood revealed that she feels more open now that this album has been recorded. “People will learn more about who I am when they hear this,” she said...

LoCash Cowboys

The LoCash Cowboys are a high energy, action packed, country duo that are guaranteed to rock any venue they step into. Once you've seen them perform live, you will fully understand why they decided to title their Stroudvarious label, debut album, This is How We Do It...

 

Nick Verzosa 
The Smoking Gun
EP

You have to be a little envious. I mean, how many of us would love to slam the door on our workplace, grab hold and tightly grip a dream, and then with all the daring a great idea brings, start out on something we would love to do? ...

 

Check out these Gretchen Wilson Photos from a recent show!

 

Audie Blaylock 
Cryin' Heart Blues

Audie Blaylock's second CD from Rural Rhythm Records titled Cryin' Heart Blues, is a very warm sounding affair. Blaylock sings a lot of bluegrass ballads with three and four part harmonies. His four member band sounds very sweet and the banjo's and vocals are so warm...

 

Backseat Molly  Texas Not Tennessee

The five-piece band Backseat Molly sum it up in the title cut to their debut album. Texas Not Tennessee is more an intended defiance than an album name. These spirited, youthful rockers have set their bullseye aim on home state popularity.
And it’s working.

 

Mountain Heart  In Concert

Mountain Heart has been around quite a while as an excellent bluegrass band, they are in the process of changing into a country rock, southern rock jam band, The newest member, Josh Schilling ...

 

The Cowboy Heroes
There’s More To Country Music

The cowboy way. It starts with the imagery, rich and big, of the campfires, the ready steeds, and the life that unfolds from the saddle point of sauntering the lonely trails. And, of course, there’s the music...

 

Easton Corbin
Live at Billy Bob’s Texas

After a very long drive to Fort Worth, Texas, and winding our way through lots of traffic, we finally arrived at Billy Bob’s, the world's largest honky tonk. Luckily for us, Easton Corbin, one of country music’s newest artists...

 

Mike Dekle - Tributes

Mike Dekle has to be one of the most radio-overlooked acts in country music. Not that he has cause for sleepless nights and worry. His bank balance grows nicely thank you from a steady stream of royalty checks...

 

The Grascals
The Famous Lefty Flynn's


This is the fourth album of this much celebrated bluegrass group, as they grow into their ever evolving sound. The Grascals are not traditional in sound, but traditional in spirit, with a modern feel to the sweet recording in the twelve great songs featured here on The Famous Lefty Flynn's...

 

Mike Runnels - The Tender Years

“I spent my first 18 years in Beaumont, Texas. That gives me the right to play country music, and it’s where I first learned what makes for the best country music.” Mike Runnels bio...

 

Susan Hickman - Self titled

You can’t help but compare Texas new country act Susan Hickman to Miranda Lambert and Carrie Underwood. Lambert and Underwood both have made remarkable and speedy inroads courtesy of fans and radio...

 

Kara Suzanne - Parlor Walls

The sophomore album of Kara Suzanne titled, Parlor Walls, is a very creative, relaxed, sometimes upbeat with a taste of country selection which really caught my attention...

  Mark Wayne Glasmire
Life Goes On

There is no denying country music has more than its fair share of lovin’, hurtin’ and leavin’ songs. You know the type. The rain drizzles at the lonely and shadowed end of town, as the single Bud sign flickers noisily against the falling specks...

 

Megan Linville, Danny Wells, Thom Shepherd and Trent Willmon at The Bluebird

Notorious for booking incredible songwriters that showcase their talent, Nashville's famed Bluebird continues to perfect their track record...

 

Steve Trent & Small Town

I’m confused. Depending which photo you look at, this popular and emerging band from Indiana is either a five-piece or an eight-piece outfit. No matter and no worry. Size may matter for some...

 

Best of 2009

Greetings folks, well looking back over the last year I will try to share my top ten favorites. Personally last year was a bit disappointing to me as compared to years before. Because it was a difficult year in many ways, financially, for our country, many people out of work, usually hard times brings out great music...

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