If you ever get a hankerin’ to go Walkin’ After Midnight under the Blue Moon of Kentucky but realize you left Three Cigarettes in the Ashtray, then She’s Got You. The One and Only – Patsy Cline.
The contralto songstress recorded hundreds of songs over the course of her short singing career. You can find recordings, from her early Four Star Records years to the lush Nashville Sound arrangements by Owen Bradley, in the library collection. WSM Opry classics, gospel interpretations, honky-tonk standards – she sang them all with a voice and a presence unmistakably her own. Patsy was the first female country singer to perform at Carnegie Hall; so when someone tosses around that worn out phrase that someone “paved the way,” you can know that in the case of Patsy Cline, it’s true.
Next up on our Patsy appreciation playlist are the biographies. Honky Tonk Angel: the intimate story of Patsy Cline, by Elis Nassour is just one of several biographies to choose from. Couple that with I fall to pieces: the music and the life of Patsy Cline by Mark Bego, and you start to get a full picture of her short life. She was only thirty, when she died in 1963. Add Love always, Patsy: Patsy Cline’s Letters to a Friend, a collection of post cards, pictures, and letters Patsy wrote to fan and friend, Treva Miller, from 1955-59.
You are going to want to watch Patsy Cline: Sweet Dreams Still: the Anthology, hosted by Robert K. Oermann (with consultant, Charlie Dick, aka the second Mr. Patsy Cline).
The cherry on the top is a little gem of a book, Remembering Patsy by Brian Mansfield. Friends and peers in the industry share little snippets of Patsy memories. I won’t give it away here, but Loretta Lynn closes one entry with, “Them were darn good panties. I’d like to get some more of them.”
All the way from Winchester, Virginia to Goodlettsville, Tennessee, Nashville Public Library gives you the One and Only Patsy Cline.
By The Civil Wars
Well, I told you I’d be back with more music…so…um…ta dah!
I was a little late to the party on this one seeing as how February 1st marks the one year anniversary of this album’s release. But better late than never, right? Again, some sad news to report – no Barton Hollow on freegal (boo). But, your handy dandy little giant library comes through in the end, and you can check out the CD and hear all these great tunes (yeah!).
The first time I listened to Barton Hollow I thought it would make a good soundtrack for Grey’s Anatomy. (Apparently great minds think alike, because their signature song “Poison and Wine” was used in a episode of the McDreamy Doctor Drama.) I liked it ok, but kinda dismissed it because the music seemed overly schmoopy (which is also how I feel about the TV show).
Then I sat down and really listened to the lyrics and man did the whole album open up. It’s still a little melancholy, but each song tells such a great story. This group is a true duo – both members sing (unlike Sugarland who is basically Jennifer Nettles and that other guy). John Paul White is the country heart of this pair, while Joy Williams brings the pop and the crossover appeal. If you like Nickel Creek, you need to check out The Civil Wars.
John Paul and Joy were nominated for the upcoming Grammy awards in Best Country Duo/Group Performance with “Barton Hollow.” Tune in to CBS on February 12 and see if they can take home the prize.
(NPL GRAMMY BATTLE: Adele vs. The Civil Wars. There isn’t an official category for this, but I would say “Rolling in the Deep” is a better song than “Barton Hollow”, but as a whole album, Barton Hollow beats 21. Yeah - they’re that good.)
PS I’m not the only one who thinks this stuff is good – so get your hold placed today!
Hell on Heels
Not too long ago I was reading one of those end of the year lists and it mentioned this band who I’d heard about but hadn’t heard. Since I’ve been a fan of Miranda Lambert since her Nashville Star days, this was definately something I wanted to check out.
Luckily for me, Ran is on Sony and so are the Pistol Annies. And what does that mean, boys and girls? That’s right…it’s on Freegal! Yeah! There are 10 tracks on this debut, so in just two short weeks you could be enjoying all the Pistol Annies fun.
Not since the Trio of Dolly Parton, Linda Ronstadt, and Emmylou Harris has traditional country music sounded so good. (I suppose I should mention those chicks from Dixie, seeing as how they were a trio as well, but their music was so much more modern that it’s kinda like comparing apples and maniacs.)
Pistol Annies is made up of Miranda Lambert, Ashley Monroe, and Angaleena Presley. Their music is pretty hard core country, but they’ve fancied it up a bit for us. Think Gretchen Wilson minus half the party plus a lacy dress – and a shotgun.
The album clocks at a very radio-friendly 30 minutes. If you only pick one, download the title track – it’ll have you tapping your boots in no time. With a free download, what do you have to lose?
By: Miranda Lambert
In 2003, Miranda Lambert came in a disappointing third place on the first season of the now defunct Nashville Star. Seven years later, Lambert has released her third CD, Revolution, and her career is hotter than ever. She is the most successful musician of any that were on Nashville Star.
On Revolution, Lambert shows her softer side with songs like my favorite, “Dead Flowers,” and “The House that Built Me.” Miranda performed a one night show at The Ryman in September ’09 to celebrate the release of this album, and when she played “The House that Built Me” with her parents in the audience, there wasn’t a dry eye in the place (including mine, and I’m not a crier.)
Ran doesn’t shy away from her rowdy side, though, rocking the house with songs like “Somewhere Trouble Don’t Go” or the big single “White Liar.” You can hear a short clip of “Dead Flowers” by listening to our Popmatic Podcast. Revolution was definately one of my favorite albums of 2009.