Monday, August 22, 2016

New Music Video From The Time Jumpers- "I Miss You"

Ronnie Dunn Preps Tattooed Heart For Late October Release

Artist: Ronnie Dunn
Album: Tattooed Heart
Label: Big Machine Records
Release date: October 21

Ronnie Dunn has brought in a couple of familiar faces on his upcoming Big Machine Records release, Tattooed Heart. With Jay DeMarcus of Rascal Flatts on board as the producer for most of the tracks, the project features guest vocals by friends Kix Brooks and Reba McEntire.

“I had a lot of fun making this album. Jay and I really clicked in the studio and we were both really proud of the final product,” said Dunn. “I branched out of my comfort zone while writing and listening to a ton of music. At the suggestion of my daughter, I even recorded an Ariana Grande song. Ironically, it became the title of the album.”

The lead single from the album, “Damn Drunk,” was released just over two weeks ago. It features vocals from his longtime Brooks & Dunn partner Brooks and was written by Liz Hengber, Alex Kline and Ben Stennis. “This is one of those tunes that I immediately gravitated to,” Dunn said at the time of the release. “I listened to hundreds of songs while writing a few myself. Jay and I took it into the studio and it went to another level. Witnessing a song do that is magic. It is one of the most gratifying dynamics of music for me. Thanks to Kix, my long time compadre in crime, for joining in on the fun.”

Track List and Songwriting Credits for Tattooed Heart

1. “Ain’t No Trucks in Texas” (Tony Martin, Wendell Mobley, Neil Thrasher)
2. “Damn Drunk” with Kix Brooks (Liz Hengber, Alex Kline, Ben Stennis)
3. “I Worship the Woman You Walked On” (Bob DiPiero, Mitzi Dawn Jenkins, Tony Mullins)
4. “That’s Why They Make Jack Daniels” (Jim Collins, Tom Hambridge, Tony Martin)
5. “I Put That There” (Deric Ruttan, Jonathan Singleton)
6. “Young Buck” (Jaren Johnston, Jeremy Stover)
7. “I Wanna Love Like That Again” (Ronnie Dunn)
8. “Still Feels Like Mexico” featuring Reba McEntire (Tommy Lee James, Jon Randall)
9. “Tattooed Heart” (Antonio Dixon, Kenneth Edmonds, Sean Forman, Ariana Grande, Matt Squire, Leon Thomas, Khristopher Van Riddick Tynes)
10. “This Old Heart” (Jim Beavers, Jonathan Singleton)
12. “Only Broken Heart in San Antone” (Steve Bogard, Jeff Stevens)
13. “She Don’t Honky Tonk No More” (Ronnie Dunn, Nikki Fernandez)

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Celluloid Country - Gene Autry in Ride Ranger Ride

Movie title: Ride Ranger Ride
Starring: Gene Autry
Release date: 1936

A handful of old movies starring country music stars have (somewhat) recently fallen into the public domain. Summer being movie season, it makes sense to help share them here to watch at your convenience. Our fifth feature stars the legendary Gene Autry as a Texas Ranger working undercover to protect an Army wagon train full of ammunition and supplies from Indian attack.
 

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Marc Broussard Combines Charity & Music Passions With Upcoming Save Our Soul II Album

Artist: Marc Broussard
Album: Save Our Soul II: Sings the Songs of the 50's and 60's
Label: G-Man Records
Release date: Sept. 30, 2016

Singer Marc Broussard of Carencro, LA has combined his love of his community and his love of the music that influenced his father and he growing up. His upcoming album titled Save Our Soul II: Marc Broussard Sings the Songs of the 50's and 60's will come out on September 30 and half of the proceeds of the album will go back to charity.

"Those moments have led me to believe I am doing what I'm supposed to be doing in life," Broussard said. "I'm going to continue to pursue these promptings, wherever they may come from. I'm going to continue to take my cues from my soul, from my gut. They've led me this far and have given me strong indications that I'm doing what I'm supposed to be doing. I feel very, very excited about what the future holds."

That future includes extensive work with his Save Our Soul Foundation, Broussard's own nonprofit organization. The SOS Foundation will concentrate on local homelessness and work with an Oschner Hospital program that offers intense training to international pediatric cardiologists and heart surgeons who return to their home country to save children.

SOS, which will have a local board of directors that includes City Parish councilman Kenneth Boudreaux, will raise money through donations, concerts, VIP events and record sales.

"I have this fan base, every time I ask them to buy records, they buy records," said Broussard. "Every time I ask them to buy tickets, they buy tickets.

"Now if I tell them 100 percent of the proceeds are going to help homeless folks here locally, as well as help City of Refuge and groups like them expand their business model and achieve their goals, my fans are going to pick those records up, every time they see them. They're going to give them out as Christmas presents, birthday presents and office favors. I fully believe that."

SOS was inspired by City of Refuge, an Atlanta-based nonprofit that hired Broussard two years ago to perform for their Christmas fundraiser. Located in an area called The Bluff, which has one of the highest crime rates and homeless populations in Georgia, the organization helps residents with food, clothing, shelter, job training and placement, housing, healthcare and education.

The City operates 180 Kitchen, which feeds the hungry and fuels a Culinary Arts School that trains students in a culinary career. A catering program provides income for the students and covers the kitchen's expenses.

Save Our Soul II: Marc Broussard Sings the Songs of the 50's and 60's track listing:
Cry To Me - Solomon Burke
Do Right Woman, Do Right Man - Aretha Franklin
Baby Workout - Jackie Wilson
Twistin’ The Night Away - Sam Cooke
These Arms Of Mine (Feat. Huey Lewis) - Otis Redding
What Becomes Of The Broken Hearted - Jimmy Ruffin
I Was Made To Love Her - Stevie Wonder
In The Midnight Hour (Feat. J.J. Grey) - Wilson Pickett
Hold On, I'm Coming - Sam & Dave
It's Your Thing - Isley Brothers
Fool For Your Love - Original
Cry to Me (acoustic feat. Ted Broussard) - Solomon Burke
Sunday Kind of Love - Etta James
Every Tear - David Egan


New Music Video From John Anderson (feat. Lorraine Jordan & Carolina Road) - "Seminole Wind"

Monday, August 15, 2016

Interview Flashback - On The Road With The Eagles' Timothy B. Schmit

I have been blessed to write contributions/reviews/interviews/opinion pieces for several country music and roots-oriented websites and publications over the years including Saving Country Music, Nashville Scene, Country California, Country Weekly, American Noise, The 9513 and Engine 145. As a regular contributor to the last two in that list, I did close to a 100 interviews with different artists- and since both of those great sites have come down, I will reprint some of those interviews here to give them a home in perpetuity. This interview was originally published in November 2009 on The 9513.

At some level, it has always been about the road for Timothy B. Schmit. Before travelling uncountable highway miles playing bass in the country-rock band Poco for nearly a decade and before charting courses around the world as a member of The Eagles, it was about chasing the song on tires. For this Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame inductee, music and home were one as a child in a trailer on wheels. 

Close to 50 years after its purchase, Schmit has gotten reflective about the Expando double-wide mobile home trailer that his family upgraded to after his musician father settled down working at a club in Sacramento. After chasing the next gig with his family in tow, Schmit’s father finally put down roots when Timothy B. Schmit was roughly a tween. The brand new shiny trailer with the pop-out sides, nearly twice as big as their old home, was the place where Schmit was raised and bitten by the music bug. 

Now, a worn classic advertisement for that trailer is blown up large and is mounted on the wall of Schmit’s studio- partly for inspiration, but also partly for reminding him of his roots and exactly where he came from. Expando is also the title for his latest solo album released this past month on Lost Highway Records.

The 9513 had an opportunity to sit down with the legend and talk trailers and tracks.

KEN MORTON, JR.- Let’s open up by looking back a bit. You got your start in music playing in a band called Tim, Tom & Ron in our hometown of Sacramento at Encina High School. Is that what brought you to music in the first place or was it before?

TIMOTHY B. SCHMIT- It was before. My father was a musician, that’s what he did for his livelihood. From before I was born, he played the club scene and standards of the day. They were a trio and did a little comedy. He was gone for the first part of my life a lot until I was about five years old. Then about that time, my parents sold our house down in the Bay Area (San Francisco) and moved into a trailer house. He pulled us around from town to town to wherever he was playing. He was probably my first real musical influence. From there, I started playing various instruments in early school. I sang in the chorus at school. I always took to the music thing.

KMJ- What kind of music was your dad playing in those days?

TBS- He was pretty active through the 50’s and early 60’s actually in the club scene.  The club scene back in the 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s was a lot of supper clubs. They would host a group for a week at a time. He was one of those groups that they would hire. It was really standards of the day. It was pre rock and roll actually. It was whatever was popular on the radio at the time. They weren’t songwriters, they’d just interpret the songs. 

KMJ- Were you into his type of music back then or did you play the role of the rebellious teen and do your own thing musically?

TBS- It was the latter- a natural course of events where I would be interested in something else. But I never shunned what he was doing. I thought it was great. I was the only one in Sacramento where when they were filling out a form at school or something about what their parents did, they would write musician for my father. I was always really taken with it and he was always pretty magical in my eyes. I loved music and I’ve even purchased some of his old recordings that he did and I’ve transferred them to CD’s and gave them out as Christmas presents to significant people like family members. I’ve always been into all kinds of music. Anything I hear with my ears is really what influences me. 

KMJ- That probably leads us to your newest project. You’ve got this brand new album called Expando that just came out this last month, before we talk about its content, explain the title.

TBS- I mentioned that I lived in a trailer house for most of my younger years- most of grade school and all of high school, really. Over the years, they kept upgrading our trailer house and when we started staying pretty solidly in Sacramento they got a big one and it was called an Expando. You could park it where you wanted to park it and it would literally expand out from 8 feet to 15 feet wide. That’s where the word came from. My first encounter with that word was this mobile home called The Expando. Later on, when I was making this record, I thought of that. My engineer friend and I started to look for it and do research on it. We found this old website and we found a brochure of this very same trailer house that I used to live in called The Expando. And I printed it out and I have it big on my wall here in my studio. When it came time to start to think about titles, I didn’t want to title the album any of the song titles. None of them seemed to quite get it. This word popped into my head and it seemed to sum it up pretty good. It’s such an autobiographical record anyways in many of the songs. I like the word and it’s different and it implies growing and expanding and I think that’s what I’ve done with this record. I think I’ve done on this record a bit. I think I’ve taken a big step in my songwriting and recording abilities. 

KMJ- For someone that hasn’t heard the album yet, describe what they’ll hear.

TBS- For people that are familiar with my solo work, and even for those that aren’t, this is the best work I’ve done to date. It’s something I’ve done in my spare time with the time off with the Eagles. I’ve been really busy with the band for a long time. And we’re gearing up to go back out again after the first of the year- probably in the spring. For awhile, we’ve been working all the time, but have a month off here and there. That’s when I would write and record a little at a time. It’s the truest music I’ve done. I chose not collaborate with any other songwriters- even though I know plenty. I didn’t want to go down that path this time. I decided to do this all on my own just to see what would happen- no matter how long it took. And it did take awhile. I thought I would start everything with my roots which is kind of a type of folk music. I would come out to my studio on a regular basis and these songs kind of came together that way. I would figure out how I would want to treat them and then record them. I think it’s the truest representation of my music and partly me than anything I’ve done. 

KMJ- Fans know you well for your work with the Eagles. How would you say your solo album is different from your stuff with the other guys?

TBS- I’d say it’s way different. Certainly there will be hint of that, because that’s what I do on a regular basis. I think it’s quirkier and at times, more raw than the Eagles. It’s looser than the
Eagles. It is two different types of things for me. In a group situation, you have parameters. In my case, it’s the Eagles. You stay somewhat in those parameters. People look expect certain things from the Eagles. They expect lots of harmony and melodic songs- and whatever else the Eagles might imply to the fan. When any of us go into the studio alone, we don’t have those parameters any longer. We can do whatever we want. I did a lot of experimenting. I didn’t do anything extreme, but I definitely wasn’t as careful as maybe the Eagles are. 

KMJ- You have some special guests play with you on the album as well, don’t you?

TBS- When it came time for extra singing or extra instruments, I would literally sit down and think of who would be great on this or that. If I could have anybody, who would I choose? I would think of somebody and I would find out their info and I would get a hold of them. I would personally ask if them if they were available and if they’d do this. Luckily, the majority of the people I asked took me up on my offer. Some people I already knew, some people I didn’t. That’s how it happened. I did it all myself. I used management to get a few phone numbers, but I would do the legwork. 

KMJ- Who are some of those people you felt important enough to ask?

TBS- One is a really great new friend who I didn’t know before I contacted him and he’s on the first song “One More Mile” and that’s Keb Mo. He’s a really terrific musician and a really sweet guy. He took my call right away and he came right out. I have the legendary Van Dyke Parks who is more known as a write and an arranger. He played accordion on some things. I had Benmont Tench from Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers who did a lot of organ and keyboards for me. I had Garth Hudson from The Band- which is one of my favorite bands of all time. He was over here and did some organ on a song. I had Dwight Yoakam and Kid Rock on the same record. They’re both hard workers- in fact everyone was. On “White Boy,” my son Ben played drums and a little guitar. I have the Blind Boys of Alabama even on a song called “Secular Praise.” I ran into them on an elevator and got talking to them one night and that’s how that got started. And of course, Graham Nash, who is an old friend of mine. When I first wrote that song, “Parachute,” I figured out that I shouldn’t be in denial that it sounded like the Eagles. I decided just to not take it another way and have Graham sing harmony on that. 

KMJ- Do you have a favorite track on the album?

TBS- Not really. Everything on here is on here for a reason. I don’t really have a favorite track- I’m happy with all of it. 

KMJ- We mentioned your work with the Eagles a couple times. You guys finished an amazing 16 month international tour this summer, how was that experience overall?

TBS- It was great. We had a really good European run. And before that, we were doing most all of the states. It’s been an incredible experience for all of us. The fact that’s still alive and vibrant is amazing. The music still means a lot to a lot of people. We have a lot of people come experience it with us. I couldn’t have imagined that it would be going this strong at our ages. It’s still very exciting and pretty great. And now with some stuff that’s new in my life, it’s recharging me in another way too. It’s great to have the newness in my solo career and then the thing with the Eagles. I couldn’t really ask for anything more. I hear people around my age talking about
retirement and it’s just not something that is in my future. There’s no stop sign out there. And luckily, I don’t have to. I have a great job. 

KMJ- The relationship dynamic between the group members has been well-documented, how is that today?

TBS- It’s really good. Basically, we all have our separate lives and our separate families. We come together and we work. And we work very hard. And when it comes to take breaks, we scatter. We don’t socialize all the much together outside of work. And that is okay, it doesn’t mean that anyone is having problems. It simply means that we have our own things going on. It just means that we’re not young and sharing a big house together. You know what I mean? The other three guys have young children that they’re raising. My youngest is 19 and in college. So things are really good. We have a really good work ethic. We come together to go to work. 

KMJ- Will we be hearing new music again from the Eagles anytime in the future? 

TBS- You know, that’s hard to say. It was pretty difficult to get out this last record. It took a long time. There’s a lot of elements to take into consideration. We’re a complicated group of people- including myself. I think we’ll just wait and see. My tendency is to say probably not. But I’m not so sure. I’ve learned to not make statements like that. So we’ll have to wait and see. 

New Music Video From Maren Morris - "80's Mercedes"

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Celluloid Country - Roy Rogers and Dale Evans in Apache Rose

Movie title: Apache Rose
Starring: Roy Rogers & Dale Evans
Release date: 1947

A handful of old movies starring country music stars have (somewhat) recently fallen into the public domain. Summer being movie season, it makes sense to help share them here to watch at your convenience. Our fourth feature stars Roy Rogers is an oil prospector who wants to get rights to drill for oil on a promising piece of land. Dale Evans (as Billie) sails a local tugboat named "Apache Rose" and Olin Howlin is Mr. Rogers' lovable old codger friend "Alkali". Bob Nolan and the "Sons of the Pioneers" are around when necessary. Gamblers aboard the boat "Casino Del Mar" aka "S.S. Casino" are the main adversaries, led by nasty George Meeker (as Reed Calhoun).

 

That Nashville Sound Sunday Newsbytes

Lots of new music videos to share with our readers again on this lazy summer Sunday. Any favorites?

- Morgan Myles - "We Won't Go Home"

- Wayne Garner - "VooDoo Queen"

- SHEL - "You Could Be My Baby"

- Ruthie Collins - "Dear Dolly"

- Dylan Scott - "My Girl"

- Brian Collins - "Healing Highways"

- Lera Lynn - "Drive"

- Tony McKee - "Lightning Bugs"

- Clutch - "A Quick Death in Texas"

- Sasha McVeigh - "When I'm Over You"

- Texan Casey Donahew has a brand new live album called All Night Party that will be out on the 19th of this month.

- Listen to the new title track off of the upcoming release of Luke Winslow-King's I'm Glad Trouble Don't Last Always.



 

Saturday, August 13, 2016

That Nashville Sound Saturday Newsbytes

It's been a big week of country music news so we've culled it here with some links for you to discover some new projects and videos that you might find of interest.

- Greensky Bluegrass announced that they'll have their next album Shouted, Written Down and Quoted will come out on September 23rd via the band’s own Big Blue Zoo Records/Thirty Tigers label. "You can call us an acoustic ensemble, or a drum-less rock band, or a rock & roll bluegrass band," says mandolin player Paul Hoffman, who, along with guitarist Dave Bruzza, handles most of the album's writing duties. "All of that shifting identity has taught us to cover a lot of ground. There's a flow to this album, just like there's a flow to our setlists. There are some aggressive, rocking moments. Some bouncy, funky moments. An acoustic think piece or two. It's a balance of moods and textures that we create as a band, almost like a mix tape."

- Sara Evans has signed to Sugar Hill Records and will release her eighth album in early 2017 for the new label.“It doesn’t have to be in any specific genre and that’s what I’m excited about,” says Evans. “I can sing really country and mountainy bluegrass, mostly because that’s what I was raised on, and how I first loved to sing. I definitely do have that. However, I can sing pop, country, blues and anything as long as it is a song that moves me. It’s kind of funny in the pitch meetings, because people might pitch a song and say, ‘Well, it’s not really country, it’s more on the pop side,’ and I’m like, ‘I don’t care about all of that. All I want is a great song.’”

- Check out this new music video from eclectic roots band The Devil Makes Three entitled "Champagne and Reefer."

- Dean Brody released the music video for his new single, "Bush Party."

- Listen to this great new cover of the Creedence Clearwater Revival song "Hey Tonight" by The Mavericks.

- Gavin DeGraw will be releasing a brand new album on Sept. 9 entitled Something Worth Saving and he's launched a PledgeMusic campaign with all kinds of fun swag that you can get if you're a fan.

-  Do yourself a favor and go over and pre-order the amazing book Without Getting Killed or Caught: The Life and Music of Guy Clark.  Author Tamara Saviano has carefully woven a beautiful dedication to one of this generation's finest storytellers and poets. Artists like Johnny Cash and Ricky Skaggs performed his tunes and nearly every Texas artist that has permanently marked that music landscape looks to the late artist as an icon. Saviano uses his deep music catalog and fantastic stories within the music business to celebrate in a way that's truly special. It's a must-read.

- Ryan Shupe and the RubberBand are releasing their newest album We Rode On on 8/19.

- Blackberry Smoke premiered their latest song "Believe You Me."

 

Concert Review Flashback - Marc Cohn & Mary Chapin Carpenter at Grass Valley Veterans Memorial Auditorium

I have been blessed to write contributions/reviews/interviews/opinion pieces for several country music and roots-oriented websites and publications over the years including Saving Country Music, Nashville Scene, Country California, Country Weekly, American Noise, The 9513 and Engine 145. As a regular contributor to the last two in that list, I did several hundred features/pieces. One of those was this concert review that I will reprint here to give it a home in perpetuity. This concert review was originally published in July 2013 in Engine 145.

Grass Valley is one of those quaint Northern California towns wedged right between the beautiful Sierra Nevada Mountains and the Sacramento Valley. It teases with its pine trees, but isn’t quite high enough in elevation to escape the brutal 100+ degree days prevalent in the summer months. With the outside temperatures hovering near 95 as the evening Marc Cohn and Mary Chapin Carpenter concert was to start, the Grass Valley Veterans Memorial Auditorium air conditioners were struggling to keep up. The building was built back in 1932 and with a sold-out, decidedly mature crowd filling the room’s 950 seats, the temperature inside wasn’t much different inside from outside.

Three years in the making, this double-bill concert is covering 15 dates throughout the summer for the two Grammy-winning singer-songwriters. The heat took a bit of a respite when the artists came out on stage hand-in-hand to thunderous applause. With backing only by keyboardist Glenn Patscha and guitarist Chris Bruce, the evening evolved into a Storytellers-style event, with the pair swapping stories, instruments and songs effortlessly and organically; that Mary Chapin Carpenter performed barefoot seemed only appropriate.

The two close friends played together on nearly every song–and even covered each other’s songs. Mary Chapin sang Cohn’s “Strangers in a Car” with a soft and subtle interpretation and Cohn sang “The Hard Way,” a song he honored Carpenter with at her recent induction into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame. The duet together on Cohn’s “Perfect Love,” The Box Tops’ “The Letter,” Van Morrison’s “Crazy Love” and Cohn’s “Silver Thunderbird.” Each duet was terrific, played slightly different than the original album versions, but where their deep husky voices complimented each other well. When they weren’t playing on each other’s songs, they found a chair and watched appreciatively like the rest of us.

The evening was very funny at times. Carpenter told a story of recently shopping at a grocery store when she thought the youngish checker might be checking her out, only to tell her that his grandmother loves her music. She kept finding the lone fan pointed at the stage and let it whip her hair around like she was a model posing for a photo shoot. It was poignant at other times as her incredible delivery of the severely underrated “This Shirt” and yet-to-be-released “Hand on My Back” proved. The common denominator that tied it all together was a lean on terrifically-written songs. Both great songwriters in their own right, they leaned on their own heroes here and there.

That religious revival observation prior to the show starting proved to be a bit telepathic. Cohn’s “Walking in Memphis” descended into a full gospel track complete with clapping and call-and-response. The twosome concluded the night with a Frank Sinatra medley and audience sing-along (something they had performed together in New York for a Central Park fundraiser in June). After all, it really was a revival–just maybe not a religious one. We were just all there to give praise to incredible songwriting and to thank the heavens for these two extremely talented singers and musicians on stage.

Friday, August 12, 2016

New Music Video From Muddy Magnolias - "Brother, What Happened?"

New Music Video From Brent Cobb - "Solving Problems"

That Nashville Sound Friday Newsbytes

There's lots of news around the country music world today from the likes of Garth Brooks, Dwight Yoakam, Darryl Worley, Bradley Walker and an upcoming release from Bruce Springsteen that's worth noting.

- Darryl Worley has signed with Daywind Records and will be releasing his first gospel album.

- On 9/23, Bruce Springsteen will release a new autobiography along with a companion album called Chapter and Verse.

- Garth Brooks has two album releases planned on his own Pearl Records before the end of the year.

- Bakersfield native Dwight Yoakam will be releasing his first bluegrass album on 9/23 called Swimmin' Pools, Movie Stars.

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band will be releasing a combo CD/DVD on 9/30 entitled Circlin' Back - Celebrating 50 Years- believe this is the recording from the PBS special that features Vince Gill, Alison Krauss and more.

- Songwriter Bradley Walker, friend and television guest to Joey+Rory, will release his first album on Gaither Records called Call Me Old-Fashioned.  If you missed the tragic/inspiring story behind the making of this album, read it here.

- Speaking of Joey+Rory, Rory has a book planned about his late bride, Joey. It is scheduled for a Valentine's Day release next year.

- Lera Lynn released a killer sparse live video of her playing "The Only Thing Worth Fighting For."

- The alternative song "Cut the Heartstrings" from the band Unsecret features the vocals of Mindy Smith- it's great to hear her voice on a new project no matter what the genre.
 

Up & Coming New Nashville- The Shires Prep New Album, My Universe

Artist: The Shires
Album: My Universe
Label: Decca
Release date: Oct. 7, 2016

Their name might not be readily recognized here in the US or Canada, but the work that The Shires have exercised here in Nashville certainly has paid big dividends in their native UK. The duo will release their hotly anticipated second album My Universe, out on 10/7.

The debut track, entitled "Beats To Your Rhythm," is a heartfelt but infectious summer smash which will have fans across the UK singing along in seconds with its handclaps, catchy chorus, stomping drums and rousing backing vocal hook. The tune and album alike showcase The Shires trademark beautiful harmonies, which come naturally to Ben Earle and Crissie Rhodes who share lead vocals.

With the release of their debut album Brave in 2015, The Shires became the biggest-selling country act in the UK last year (including US artists), and one of the biggest-selling breakthrough UK acts of any genre along with James Bay, Years and Years and Jess Glynn.

Ben and Crissie continued to build a huge following, in fans and critics alike, landing 5 A list singles at BBC Radio 2 and appearing on a string of high profile TV shows including Graham Norton, BBC Music Awards, Children in Need Rocks and many more. The band were then given their first headline slot at Glastonbury this summer, topping the bill on the Acoustic Stage on Saturday night.

The new album will appeal to both pop and country fans, with high profile co-writes involving top country music writers, including Kip Moore, and with the album recorded at Sound Stage Studios (one of the most prestigious recording studios in Nashville, which has cut records for other country superstars such as Carrie Underwood, Tim McGraw and Lady Antebellum).