The Hodgepodge: Community Chat and Q&A

I’m embarrassed to say, but I have no muse or ideas for a Hodgepodge this week. I look at mainstream country, radio in particular, and it’s the same old rehashed mess that’s been around for a while. Americana continues to be home to great albums worth checking out. Nothing has really popped up in the past week to comment on.

The news of Zac Brown’s presence at a Palm Beach drug bust was swept under the rug rather quickly. Perhaps more fallout or news may surface in the near future, but for now it looks like Zac got nothing more than 15 minutes in the shameful spotlight. The star-struck police tried to keep him out of it, and Zac responded via social media admitting he was there, but only for a short time before the raid occurred.

All in all, this has just been kind of a dud week. There’s a couple local Red Dirt music events on the horizon in town that I hope I can attend and comment on in the future, and I’m planning my next historical snapshot piece. So I hope that in the coming weeks I can bring some good posts for you all to read and enjoy. But for this week, I’ll leave it open for discussion and entertain any questions you may want to ask.

Upcoming/Recent Country and Americana Releases

  • Sundy Best will release a live album tomorrow called It’s So Good Live. The 24 song project was recorded live at concert in Louisville.
  • Martina McBride‘s Reckless will be released on April 29.
  • Lonestar will also release a new album on April 29 called Never Enders.
  • Zac Brown Band‘s “Castaway” will go for radio adds on April 25.
  • Chris Stapleton‘s next single “Parachute,” officially goes for adds on May 2.
  • The Honeycutters will be releasing a new album on May 20 titled On The Ropes.

Throwback Thursday Song

“Golden Ring” Tammy Wynette and George Jones. When it comes to duets in country music, Tammy Wynette and George Jones are a marquee pairing, not to mention that they’re both great vocalists. This 1976 duet may be their most famous duet, and also hit number one on the charts.

Non-Country Suggestion of the Week

PJ Harvey’s The Hope Six Demolition Project. English rocker PJ Harvey gets quite political with her ninth studio album. While the lyrics may be off-putting to those who either don’t agree with her message or don’t care for politics in music in general, Harvey’s excellent folk rock music style is still ever-present on this album. Overall, PJ Harvey is an underrated musician, and I’d suggest listening to any of her music.

Tweet of the Week

Perhaps they’ll be a day when the good ol’ boys club of country radio is broken for another all female top 5.

An iTunes Review for a Bad EP

Screen Shot 2016-04-20 at 9.31.14 PM

This past week, I made the unfortunate discover of Elizabeth Lyons’ song “Luke Bryan.” Yes, she sings a song about her love for Luke Bryan. It actually exists. In fact, she has an entire EP full of songs for immature teenage girls with titles like “Girls Like Shoes, Bags, & Boys.” It’s like a clone of RaeLynn. I’m all for more women on the country charts, but we need Maren Morris and Kacey Musgraves, not Elizabeth Lyons or RaeLynn.

45 thoughts on “The Hodgepodge: Community Chat and Q&A

  1. Ron April 21, 2016 / 11:14 am

    Glad to hear parachute is going to be chris Stapleton’s new single. Also looks like Sturgill Simpson is going to debut at #1

    Liked by 2 people

    • Derek Hudgin April 21, 2016 / 11:49 am

      Yes! “Parachute” is a great choice for a single, I think. Hopefully this is one radio and general mainstream fans can get behind.

      And I think it’s awesome that Sturgill is pretty much head to head with Rhianna for #1 album


  2. Raymond April 21, 2016 / 12:55 pm

    Ok I have some questions on some songs released as singles these are ones from the 2000s. I want to know your opinions on the following songs.

    Lee Ann Womack I Hope You Dance
    Dixie Chicks Landslide
    Leann Rimes Probably Wouldn’t Be This Way
    Rascal Flatts These Days
    Brad Paisley & Alison Krauss Whiskey Lullaby

    These were all pretty big mainstream hit songs in the 2000s and I’d love to hear your guys thoughts on these songs.


    • Derek Hudgin April 21, 2016 / 1:07 pm

      “I Hope You Dance” – Kind of cheesy, but I like the inspirational message.
      “Landslide” – It’s a great song. I like Fleetwood Mac and Smashing Pumpkins’ version as well.
      Not familiar with Rimes’ song.
      Not a big fan of “These Days.” It’s one of their better songs, but I’m not much of a Rascal Flatts fan as it is.
      “Whiskey Lullaby” is an excellent country song. One of Brad’s best and Alison Krauss’ inclusion makes it much better.


      • Raymond April 21, 2016 / 1:12 pm

        Ok I have a followup to that. Who did “Landslide” better Dixie Chicks or Fleetwood Mac. I want to say Dixie Chicks since they made that into a bluegrass song essentially.

        Another song that I’ve never seen an opinion from either of you guys is Sugarland Stay, I have always heard it but I’ve never quite been able to form an opinion what’s your opinion on that one.


        • Derek Hudgin April 21, 2016 / 1:33 pm

          I like Fleetwood Mac’s better just because Stevie Nicks’ vocals are great on that track. With that said, though, the Dixie Chicks’ cover of the song is well done.

          “Stay” is a great song, probably my favorite Sugarland song.


        • Ron April 21, 2016 / 2:48 pm

          Its hard to go against Stevie as the original writer of the song considering it was composed from such a personal place. When you hear her sing it you know she lived it. With that said if you’re going to cover an iconic song like that you have to make sure you make it your own and do something different with it and the Dixie Chicks more than accomplished that. Unfortunately that was the first song that was used to help them cross over to other genres of music and a very watered down non country version was released to AC/Top 40 radio

          Liked by 1 person

        • FeedThemHogs April 21, 2016 / 3:04 pm

          It’s interesting that you bring up “Stay.” In the past couple weeks, the top 40 country stations in my area have been playing the crap out of that song. Funny thing is, I’m also hearing “Unlove You” as well. I’m glad they’re doing that for sure, but it kind of caught me off guard hearing “Stay” so much lately.


        • FeedThemHogs April 21, 2016 / 3:20 pm

          In my opinion, anything the Dixie Chicks do is the best version. But I’m a fanatic about them. Can’t wait to see them in St. Louis in August.


        • Josh Schott April 21, 2016 / 4:39 pm

          Probably Sugarland’s best song. Well actually it is their best song because pretty much every other single they released drove me to turn the radio dial. They’re much better as solo artists anyway, especially since we actually get to hear Bush. Nettles is a talented vocalist, but her voice can be annoying at times.

          Liked by 1 person

    • Josh Schott April 21, 2016 / 4:36 pm

      “I Hope You Dance” – It’s a nice song, but it got overplayed and the cheesy lyrics will be grating after you hear them a thousand times.

      “Landslide” – Excellent song. Love both the Chicks’ and Fleetwood Mac’s versions of the song. Can’t say which one is better, as both are great in their own way.

      “Probably Wouldn’t Be This Way” – Kind of bored me. Then again I don’t care for Rimes, so I didn’t listen to the song much.

      “These Days” – Eh it’s okay. I can take it or leave it. Nothing special.

      “Whiskey Lullaby” – Fantastic song that brings out the best in each artist. This is the good Brad Paisley I want to come back. Krauss is always great.


      • Raymond April 21, 2016 / 5:36 pm

        There has to be one Leeann Rimes song that was good. If there are some songs I’d suggest you listen too would probably be “Blue” “What I Cannot Change” “What Have I Done” “Nothing Better To Do”, honestly Leeann Rimes music got better like her cover of “Swinging”. Hey Josh have you given any of Leeann’s other albums a shot like “Family” or “Spitfire”, I highly recommend those albums a lot.

        For “I Hope You Dance” well I do hate the overplay, but the message is sweet enough to overcome that.


    • petemarshall724 April 21, 2016 / 6:20 pm

      I hope you dance is a very good song but the radio played it too much. Landslide is a good song and I really like both Fleetwood Mac and Dixie Chicks versions. Probably wouldn’t be this way is an O K song. These Days is one of my favorite Rascal Flatts songs and I am a fan of theirs. Whiskey Lullaby is a very good song by good Brady Paisley and lovely Alison Krauss.


  3. Rob April 21, 2016 / 1:04 pm

    What happened to the segments y’all were doing on the Past Pulse of Mainstream Country Music, I really enjoyed those.


    • Derek Hudgin April 21, 2016 / 1:45 pm

      Zack brought those back when he started writing for us, We haven’t done them since he’s left.


    • Josh Schott April 21, 2016 / 4:21 pm

      Those are back to be dormant for now, but it could always come back. I’m currently working on an idea for a new feature that would be very similar and hope to share soon.


  4. Amanda April 21, 2016 / 1:33 pm

    I have a question about your opinion on a song from the early 2000s. What do you think of Gary Allan’s What I’d Say from his Alright Guy album. I think it’s a great song.


    • Derek Hudgin April 21, 2016 / 1:43 pm

      That’s a good song, and a well done cover of Earl Thomas Conley


  5. OlaR April 21, 2016 / 1:37 pm

    No news about Blake Shelton & Gwen Whatshername?

    Prince is dead. He used the name “Joey Coco” or “J.Coco” to write songs for Kenny Rogers (“You’re My Love”) & Deborah Allen.
    (RiP Chyna)


    • Derek Hudgin April 21, 2016 / 1:50 pm

      Way too many deaths in the first 4 months of 2016. Haggard, Frey, Bowie, and now Prince. Just sucks


    • Josh Schott April 21, 2016 / 4:23 pm

      Fortunately no. However I’m expecting the new Blake album to be terrible, although I’m not sure if it can be worse than the cover art for it.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Amanda April 21, 2016 / 2:19 pm

    Also, that Elizabeth Lyons EP sucks. That Luke Bryan song is horrific, maybe one of the worst songs I’ve ever heard in all my 19 years.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Derek Hudgin April 21, 2016 / 2:38 pm

      “I want to find someone who treats me just like Luke Bryan.” – What does that even mean?

      “I like the way Sam Hunt wants to Leave the Night On. I’d take a Cruise with Florida Georgia Line.” Ugh.


      • Ron April 21, 2016 / 2:51 pm

        LOL were those written by Rebecca “Friday” Black? I’m guessing being treated like Luke Bryan means Shakin it for him in the back of his pickup truck


      • Amanda April 21, 2016 / 3:11 pm

        These lyrics sound like they were written by bored sixteen year olds. There are male country singers that I’m very attracted to, but there’s no way in hell I’d ever write a song like this.


  7. Cobra April 21, 2016 / 2:30 pm

    Good Lord, that Elizabeth Lyons song is just horrendous.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. FeedThemHogs April 21, 2016 / 3:14 pm

    So I saw the Opry last weekend for the first time on my first trip to Nashville, and a fella by the name of Jimmy Wayne played it. At first I was asking myself Who is this guy? But when he starting singing “So Do You Believe Me Now” I remembered hearing him. Then he sang “I Love You This Much” and it was great. Just curious on your thought of him.

    Also, Vince Gill closed the Opry that night, and played a brand new song he had just finished writing. He even had lyrics on a stand in front of him. He sat alone in the circle on a stool with his guitar, and Paul Franklin was on steel, but the rest of the band stepped off. The song began with these words (from memory, so they may not be exact) ‘I heard that Merle passed away, Hell I thought he’d live forever…’ It was a special moment, one to be remembered, and I’m glad I witnessed it. I’ve been looking for the Opry to put it on YouTube, but haven’t seen it yet.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Derek Hudgin April 21, 2016 / 4:06 pm

      I don’t really mind Jimmy Wayne. I like both the songs you mentioned, and my mom would play his debut album a lot in the car when we would go to places, so I heard a lot of him growing up. I saw Jimmy Wayne live in 2009. He was opening for Dierks Bentley who was opening for Brad Paisley. It was a great show, and I enjoyed all three acts.


    • Josh Schott April 21, 2016 / 4:27 pm

      Don’t remember much of Wayne, but I do enjoy “I Love You This Much.”

      Vince Gill is awesome and I hope to see him in-person one day. If you haven’t heard it, I highly recommend you check out his previous album Bakersfield he did with Paul Franklin. I have it on vinyl and it’s really great. They cover five songs by Buck Owens and five by Haggard. They really do two icons a great justice with the covers.


      • FeedThemHogs April 21, 2016 / 4:52 pm

        I work at a traditional country radio station, and we play the heck out of the ‘Bakersfield’ album. You’re right, its great!

        Liked by 1 person

      • FeedThemHogs April 21, 2016 / 4:58 pm (shameless plug)


  9. petemarshall724 April 21, 2016 / 5:34 pm

    When will Chase Bryant going release his cd?


    • Raymond April 21, 2016 / 5:37 pm

      I’ll answer this.

      As soon as he becomes relevant!


    • Josh Schott April 21, 2016 / 7:12 pm

      No idea


  10. petemarshall724 April 21, 2016 / 5:53 pm

    I highly recommend to you try to listen to Harry Luge (band) on he is a very good singer. He would give Sturgill and Chris Stapleton run for the money. I have 2 of his cd’s and there are no bad songs on both of them. He is from Phoenix and I saw him 3 times in Phoenix International raceway. Harry made couple more cd’s which I need to get. Harry had 1 song out on Texas Radio “Back in Love again.”


  11. Danik Gillespie April 21, 2016 / 7:14 pm

    Where do you go to find how much a single/album has sold? I have always wondered this.


  12. Brett April 21, 2016 / 9:57 pm

    Im glad Sturgill’s new album is getting the buzz and racking up the sales its getting. Country or not, good to see good, honest music getting recognized. Im a Kentucky boy and gotta say, the bluegrass is on a roll right now! Sturgill, Stapleton, wow! Im really digging Sea Stories from a Sailors Guide to Earth, whats your guys favorite Simpson cut?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Derek Hudgin April 22, 2016 / 8:49 am

      I really like “Sea Stories” as well. “In Bloom” is great too!


  13. Frank the Tank April 22, 2016 / 4:47 pm

    Any recommendations on where to get accurate information on album credits (songwriters, lyrics, musicians) for new albums if one primarily stream such albums and doesn’t have a physical copy?


    • Josh Schott April 22, 2016 / 4:59 pm

      Your best bet is Most of the time it should have the information you’re looking for.


      • Frank the Tank April 23, 2016 / 7:54 pm

        Cool – thanks!


  14. southtexaspistolero April 25, 2016 / 9:40 am

    “I Hope You Dance” is overplayed, overrated, and worst of all not an accurate reflection of Lee Ann Womack’s body of work at all. In fact, it isn’t even an accurate reflection of the album whose title it shares. I was rather skeptical for years of buying that album because I was afraid the whole thing would be, for lack of a better term, as Hallmarky as the song.

    But it wasn’t. Outside of the title track, “Ashes By Now,” and (to a lesser extent) “Why They Call It Falling,” I Hope You Dance was actually a pretty typical Lee Ann Womack album. “Does My Ring Burn Your Finger” was worth the price of admission alone, but I also liked “Lonely Too” (which was penned by the great Bruce Robison), “Stronger Than I Am,” and her cover of Don Williams’ “Lord, I Hope This Day Is Good.”

    Every time I hear that song anymore, or see a mention of it, I am reminded of the opening of this piece from Texas Monthly some time ago:

    Her seated posture is perfect. Her hands are tightly clasped and laid squarely in her lap. Then, singing from her diaphragm—the way the great ones do—Lee Ann Womack reminds us that her voice is just as disciplined. Immediately, Womack’s suite at Austin’s tony Hotel Saint Cecilia, designed as a tribute to the decadence of the Rolling Stones’ Exile on Main St. period, is transformed into a house of worship. When she sings “Send It On Down,” a song about the intersection of God and the bottle, and gets to the hook—“Jesus, can you save me from going crazy?”—the dozen of us in attendance look on reverentially. There are no camera phones, no movement. Just silence. She’s so inside the song—each line struck with a precise fusion of righteousness and weariness—that even before her brief, four-song set is over, we’re left with an indelible takeaway: if all you know about Lee Ann Womack is the schmaltzy megahit “I Hope You Dance,” then you probably don’t understand her at all.

    (“Send it On Down,” written and originally recorded by the great Chris Knight, is from her excellent 2014 album The Way I’m Livin’.)


    • Amanda April 25, 2016 / 2:55 pm

      I am a die-hard Lee Ann Womack fan. I think “I Hope You Dance” is a great song and the album as a whole is great. However, it is not her best song. In my opinion, that honor goes to “The Fool”. I think “Lonely Too” is a fantastic song as well, depressing as hell, but fantastic. But in my honest opinion, the hands-down-best song on the I Hope You Dance album is definitely “The Healing Kind”.


      • southtexaspistolero April 25, 2016 / 3:16 pm

        I liked “The Healing Kind” as well.

        As far as best song, period…I would probably have to vote for the entire There’s More Where That Came From album. That album was one for the ages, arguably the best mainstream country album of at least the last 30 years.


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