The Texas Troubadors “Buddy's Boogie (intro)” from Almost To Tulsa (Bear Family www.bear-family.de 2008)Buy it!
Vince Gill “Just Pleasing You” from Kin (Vanguard 2012) —Professor of literature, Mary Karr co-writes ten songs with one of the best in the business. Guest artists make this a fine release.Buy it!
Jamey Johnson and Willie Nelson “Don't You Ever Get Tired of Hurting Me?” from Living for a Song: A Tribute to Hank Cochran (Mercury 2012) —A collection of Sweet 16 songs written by the great Hank Cochran, featuring guest artists on every cut.Buy it!
Hank Williams III “I'm a Long Gone Daddy” from Long Gone Daddy (Curb 2012) —Talent and taste skip a generation as Tricephus mixes up covers and originals in the honky tonk style.Buy it!
Don Williams with Alison Krauss “I Just Come Here for the Music” from And So It Goes (SUGAR HILL ww.sugarhillrecords.com 2012) —If you've lost track of Don Williams--as I did--this is a great place to begin the reunion.Buy it!
The Time Jumpers “On the Outskirts of Town” from The Time Jumpers (Rounder www.rounder.com 2012) —Everyone misses Papa John Hughey but Paul Franklin is an able sub on pedal steel and the addition of Vince's vocals and guitar makes their Rounder debut a winner.Buy it!
Marty Stuart and His Fabulous Superlatives “Sundown in Nashville” from Nashville, Volume 1: Tear The Woodpile Down (Sugar Hill Records ww.sugarhillrecords.com 2012) —Another quality release of mostly originals from the Keeper of the Traditional Country Music flame.Buy it!
Jim Lauderdale “Triple Crossroad Blues” from Carolina Moonrise (Sky Crunch 2012) N —The third album of Robert Hunter-Jim Lauderdale bluegrass compositions, fine players and produced by Randy Kohrs.Buy it!
Chris Brashear “Silvery Colorado” from Heart of the Country (Dog Boy 2012) N —It's been awhile since the Missouri native released anything and this album just shows he still has the goods.Buy it!
The Boxcars “Born and Raised in Covington” from All In (Mountain Home www.crossroadsmusic.com 2012) —Lots of new material by this fine Adam Steffy-led outfit.Buy it!
Steep Canyon Rangers “Long Shot” from Nobody Knows You (Rounder www.rounder.com 2012) —Martin? We don't need no stinkin' Steve Martin to put out a good record.Buy it!
The HillBenders “Talking in Your Sleep” from Can You Hear Me Calling? (Sugar Hill Records ww.sugarhillrecords.com 2012) —A really strong release from this fast-climbing bluegrass group out of Springfield, MO.Buy it!
Kathy Mattea “West Virgina, My Home” from Calling Me Home (SUGAR HILL ww.sugarhillrecords.com 2012) —Kathy again taps the roots of her West Virginia raisin' with songs by Hazel Dickens, Jean Ritchie, Laurie Lewis and others.Buy it!
The Carolina Chocolate Drops “Ruby, Are You Mad At Your Man?” from Leaving Eden (Nonesuch 2012) —Personnel may change but the CCD just gets better. Check out their version of "Jackson" on the Johnny Cash tribute, "We Walk the LIne".Buy it!
Iris DeMent “The Night I Learned How Not to Pray” from Sing the Delta (Flariella Records 2012) N —The seven-year wait for new Iris DeMent material was worth it. This music touches something deep inside me.Buy it!
Darrell Scott and Tim O'Brien “Long Time Gone” from We're Usually a Lot Better Than This (Full Light Records 2012) —Tim and Darrell's sons attend the same school and this album features tracks from two benefit shows for the school. Some mighty fine duet work throughout this one.Buy it!
Penny Ney “Lonely Street” from The Hardest Truth - EP (Penny Ney 2012) —A veteran Texas singer-songwriter new to my ears this year. Looking forward to more from this lady.Buy it!
Zoe Muth & the Lost High Rollers “I've Been Deceived” from Old Gold - EP (Signature Sounds www.signaturesounds.com 2012) —Zoe Muth and her solid band continue to record her own fine material as well as tasty covers of songs not usually though of as country.Buy it!
Dwight Yoakum “Take Hold of My Hand” from 3 Pears (Warner 2012) N —The first Dwight release in seven years finds him near the top of his game, although the songwriting isn't as strong as previous material.Buy it!
The Misfits Classic Country Band “Mr Country Song Wrighter” from Always Welcome At Home (self 2012) L —These fellas are Jefferson County residents who put out a release this year.Buy it!
JP Harris and the Tough Choices “Gear Jammin' Daddy” from I'll Keep Calling (Cow Island Music 2011) —12 original tunes covering honky tonk, Western swing, laments and trucker songs, this may be the best debut album since Dwight.Buy it!
Willie Nelson, Ray Price and Lukas Nelson “Cold War With You” from Heroes (Legacy 2012) —Lots of guests, including son Lukas, as Willie rolls on (yes, you can roll him up and smoke him when he dies)Buy it!
Lyle Lovett “White Freightliner Blues” from Release Me (Curb / Lost Highway 2012) —A typical mix of Lyle music and musings, highlighted by the title track duet with k.d. lang.Buy it!
Chuck Mead & His Grassy Knoll Boys “You Better Treat Your Man Right” from Back At the Quonset Hut (Ramseur Records www.ramseurrecords.ocm 2012) —Fine collection of classic songs recorded at the Nashville landmark and with A-List guys like Bob Moore, Buddy Spicher, Harold Bradley and Pig Robbins.Buy it!
Rough Shop “Last Sad Song” from Beneath the South Side Bridge (Perdition 2012) L —Don't miss the last night of local favorite Rough Shop's 9th annual Christmas extravaganza tonight at the Focal Point.Buy it!
The Flatlanders “Number Sixteen” from The Odessa Tapes (New West www.newwestrecords.com 2012) —40-year old recordings recently discovered and released to celebrate 40 years of The Flatlanders. DVD included.Buy it!
Rodney Crowell “I’m a Mess” from KIN (Vanguard 2012) —We were asked to name a song of the year--impossible task--but here's a good candidate.Buy it!
Jimmy Bryant “Georgia Boogie (outro)” from Frettin' Fingers: The Lightning Guitar of Jimmy Bryant (Sundazed 1995)Buy it!
Like everything else, times are approximate.
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