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A
Americana Podcast

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Americana Podcast

American Songwriter, Robert Earl Keen

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Americana Podcast: The 51st State is a platform dedicated to sharing and expanding on the Americana genre's roots, reach, and definition. Each episode is told from the point of view of the musicians that have dedicated their lives to it. Robert Earl Keen, Americana pioneer and host, interviews musicians, exploring their unique histories, creative processes, successes, failures, and everything in between.
 
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Maker's Mic Podcast

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Maker's Mic Podcast

LR Baggs Acoustic Amplification

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Maker’s Mic is a music makers podcast hosted by Mike Luckett and presented by LR Baggs. In each episode, we will explore the world of music by interviewing the people who bring it to life. Musicians, studio engineers, and more will offer up their stories and insights, as we take you backstage, into the studio, and behind the curtain for a glimpse into the life of a music maker.
 
In “One by Willie,” Texas Monthly’s John Spong hosts intimate conversations with a range of prominent guests about the Willie Nelson songs that mean the most to them. But this series isn’t just about the songs. It’s about what music really means to us—the ways it can change us, take care of us, and connect us all. Songs featured in the episodes can be found on Apple Music. Listen here.
 
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We’ve all heard the common phrase “a master of none” in reference to an individual who is seemingly versatile, flexible, and knowledgeable in their pursuits. Regardless of what they are. We’re not surprised when an artist is an avid reader nor are we shocked when a mathematician takes an interest in subjects like music. The term “master of none” al…
 
There’s something different about Texas. But how do you define it without resorting to cliches about cowboys and oilmen? At Texas Monthly, we think the answer is through stories — stories like the ones we’ve been telling for almost 50 years. On State of Mind, you’ll hear those stories from our talented writers and from a wide array of other Texans.…
 
It’s happened to all of us. we’re chatting with another person, getting to know each other and then the question “What kind of music do you like” comes up.. At which point many of us are better off reading a thesaurus outloud trying to describe it as we do our best impression of that scene in High Fidelity where Dick is describing the enigmatic Mar…
 
Hailing from Americus Georgia, Brent Cobb got his start with his first record “No Place to Leave” in 2006, a roots meets red hot chilli peppers- esque album produced by his cousin Dave Cobb. After “no place to leave”, Brent returned to Georgia but moved to Nashville shortly after with the encouragement of singer Luke Bryan- where Cobb then joined c…
 
This week, we celebrate Willie’s 88th birthday with singer-songwriter Sheryl Crow, who discusses what may be the single best-known song that Willie ever wrote, “Crazy.” She’ll walk us through what it means to compose a pop standard, explaining the differences she hears in Patsy Cline’s original, 1961 version and the one that Willie still does night…
 
Even though singer-songwriter Rodney Crowell had already been a diehard Willie fan for 10 years when Phases and Stages came out in 1974, he says he was positively gobsmacked by the album’s lead single, “Bloody Mary Morning.” On this episode he dives deep into all that, then goes on to describe his first recording session with Willie a few years lat…
 
Singer-songwriter Robert Earl Keen first heard “Mr. Record Man” as a pre-teen Houston kid who’d just raided his older brother’s record collection. It’s another deep cut off Willie’s 1962 debut album, and it makes Keen think of a dance floor mishap at his first Willie show, the time his car caught fire in the parking lot at Willie’s 4th of July Picn…
 
Singer-songwriter Shakey Graves—who answers to Alejandro Rose-Garcia when he’s not onstage—discusses Willie’s biggest pop hit singing solo, “Always on My Mind.” It had been one of Elvis Presley’s signature songs of the '70s before Willie covered it in 1982, and Alejandro explains how Willie managed to pull off the impossible: stealing a song from E…
 
Okay y'all… We need to talk about something. at first we only heard about it in whispers or read it in citations or saw the occasional New Yorker comic about it. But now’s it’s been going on for a bit and we can’t ignore the elephant in the room any longer.. Bluegrass music is considered cool now. I know. I'd like to say i’m surprised, but I’m real…
 
Acclaimed singer-songwriter Rosanne Cash, a four-time Grammy winner and certified roots music royalty, examines “Night Life,” one of Willie’s first compositions to earn its way into the American musical canon. It’s a song that makes her nostalgic for the clean-cut, smooth-crooning Willie of the early ‘60s, but also brings up the effect of a Depress…
 
Acclaimed producer T Bone Burnett (Counting Crows’ August And Everything After; the Oh Brother, Where Art Thou? soundtrack; dozens of others) discusses one of the darkest songs Willie ever wrote: the early-60s murder ballad “I Just Can’t Let You Say Goodbye.” The song debuted on Willie’s 1966 album Live at Panther Hall in Fort Worth, Texas, and T B…
 
Willie’s daughter Amy Nelson was just five years old when she first heard Kermit the Frog sing “Rainbow Connection” in The Muppet Movie, and she spent the next twenty years trying to talk her dad into recording it. In 2001, he finally did, with Amy—an accomplished musician in her own right—co-producing. She describes the way that session grew into …
 
Don Was, the legendary producer who recorded Bonnie Raitt’s “I Can’t Make You Love Me” and the B-52s’ “Love Shack,” and has worked with everyone from the Rolling Stones to Bob Dylan, calls Willie’s recording of “Across the Borderline” his favorite track he ever worked on. It was the title cut to the 1993 album that breathed new life into Willie’s c…
 
Singer-songwriter Steve Earle was a longhaired, seventeen-year-old San Antonio kid when he first heard “Local Memory,” a deep cut off 1973’s Shotgun Willie. He calls it the song that first taught him that a country lyric could read like literature. Steve goes on to describe the very real tension that still existed between hippies and rednecks when …
 
John Craigie began his career like many artists of the early 2000’s- playing in coffee shops up and down the coast of California with the occasional intrastate appearances in other coffee shops. during this time, Craigie honed his craft as a songwriter but also took the time to develop a real stage experience. looking to artists he admired such as …
 
Storytelling is as old as communal language itself and songwriters are an extension of the great tradition of sharing experience through words... And Americana music is as loyal to that part of our history as it is dedicated to continuing to share those experiences between artists and listeners. Possibly one of the most talented of those writers wo…
 
Lumineers lead singer and co-songwriter Wesley Schultz first heard “Pretty Paper” when his parents played Willie’s classic, 1978 holiday album of the same name while driving around their New Jersey neighborhood looking at Christmas lights. The song is a Yuletide standard—so much so that a lot of listeners don’t even know Willie wrote it—and it prom…
 
Country music star Lee Ann Womack has been singing along to “Three Days” since she was a little girl raiding the record collection of her dad, who disc jockeyed at a small country radio station in East Texas. It’s a deep cut off Willie’s 1962 debut album, and it prompts thoughts from Lee Ann on the unexpected places where songwriters find the lines…
 
Sonny Throckmorton is one of the greatest country songwriters who ever lived. He's the man who wrote “If We’re Not Back in Love By Monday” for Merle Haggard, “Why Not Me” for the Judds, and “The Cowboy Rides Away” for George Strait, among hundreds of others. On this episode, Sonny discusses a little-known, early Willie composition, “What a Way to L…
 
Country music legend Wynonna Judd first heard “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain” as a young girl splitting her time between her mom’s house in Los Angeles and her grandparents' home in rural Kentucky. It was Willie’s first #1 single and the song that finally made him a star, and on this episode of One By Willie, she talks about hearing it on the radio …
 
Waylon Payne's road to country music stardom seemed to be paved with gold. Son of songwriting legend Sammi Smith, guitar player Jodi Payne, and godson to Waylon Jennings.. The pedigree was there and it didn't take long to see that Waylon Payne's way with words and musical ability were also flourishing.. But sometimes life takes us on different path…
 
The first song that country star Jack Ingram ever taught himself to play on guitar was Willie’s #11 country hit from 1976, “I’d Have to Be Crazy.” On this episode, Jack talks about how learning it clued him into the complex simplicity of the best country songs, from which point he goes into the fundamental question—“To smoke, or not to smoke?”—that…
 
Alejandro Escovedo is almost surely the only artist who has shared bills with both Willie Nelson and the Sex Pistols. On this episode, the singer-songwriter—who was a major figure in the West Coast punk scene of the seventies and rode herd over the Americana movement in the nineties—talks about Willie’s 1963 single “Half a Man.” It’s a song that pe…
 
Our guest this episode is Central-California based Americana singer-songwriter and U.S. Navy Veteran, Doc Oliver. His story is one of honor, redemption, and hope. Working as a battlefield medic with multiple tours in Afghanistan, Oliver earned the nickname “Doc” stitching up wounded soldiers and civilians alike. He was honorably discharged, sufferi…
 
Lyle Lovett first heard “Hello Walls” as a kid growing up in tiny Klein, Texas. On this episode, the four-time Grammy-winning singer-songwriter talks about that song, which was Willie’s first No. 1 country song as a songwriter. Lovett also reflects on the solitary nature of songwriting, the kiss of gratitude that Willie planted on Faron Young (the …
 
The Grammy-nominated Americana singer-songwriter takes a look at Willie's #1 country hit from 1980, "Angel Flying Too Close to the Ground," a topic that prompts her to do some deep thinking on the difference between writing a sad song and feeling the need to just sit and listen to one. From there, she goes on to describe what it was like to record …
 
Originally from Funkstown, Maryland- Josh is a singer-songwriter now based in Kentucky. He’s toured with the contemporary greats including Tyler Childers, Colter Wall, Shooter Jennings, and Todd Snider- and has written hit songs for artists including Cody Jinks and Hayes Carll and is just an overall song-smithing son of a gun. Morningstar only has …
 
Grammy-winning Lori Mckenna was born, raised in, and remains in Stoughton Massachusetts. If you’re unfamiliar with her solo career I would personally bet that you’re still familiar with her songwriting. Having penned and/or co-penned songs like Faith Hill’s “Stealing Kisses”, Little Big Town’s Girl Crush, and Tim McGraw’s “Humble & Kind”. Her work …
 
Kenneth Pattengale and Joey Ryan have been writing and working together as the Milk Carton Kids since 2011. In that time they have released five records, been included in various small and big screen enterprises and, as of 2018, are the acting hosts of the Americana Music Awards. This colorful history can most likely be particularly attributed to t…
 
In the summer of 2018, we said "We need to talk about Americana music". At the time it felt that there was an apparent disconnect in not only the discussion around the genre but in the would-be community as well. Industry workers and audiences were leading the conversation, but there appeared to be a disturbing absence of input from the most import…
 
"Sentimental music has a great way of taking you back somewhere at the same time it takes you forward, so you feel nostalgic and hopeful at the same time."- Nick Hornby Robert Earl Keen speaks live from Railbird Music Festival with Andrew Marlin and Emily Frantz of Mandolin Orange about developing a setlist from a large catalog, building a communit…
 
Drew Holcomb, originally from Memphis and currently residing in Nashville, TN, formed his band Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors in 2006 and was an early adopter of the term "Americana". Holcomb's discography is impressive, extending as far back as 2005, and has a nearly consistent output of a 2-year album cycle. His most recent record, Dragons, was r…
 
BE SURE TO LISTEN TO THE WALKING THE FLOOR PODCAST TO HEAR THE OTHER HALF OF THIS LIVE-RECORDED EVENT Recorded life at AMERICANAFEST in Nashville, TN, host Robert Earl Keen speaks with Chris Shiflett. Some of you may recognize him as the guitarist of the famed rock-band the Foo Fighters while others (or both) might know him from his podcast Walking…
 
The individuals we bring into our lives are sources of happiness, pain, direction, growth, etc. Some may be new and others may have been there from what feels like the very beginning. And like that, there stands a physical embodiment of the intersection of time and influence all wrapped up into one person, or two… or maybe three. On today's episode…
 
On today's episode of Americana podcast: the 51st State - Kevin Russell. Also known as Shinyribs. Kevin Russell, or as we've been calling him "the physical embodiment of sound"- was born in the late '60s in Beaumont, Texas. In his formative years, Russell's family relocated to Shreveport, Louisiana, where he was exposed to one of the richest hotbed…
 
Up to this point, Americana has been defined as American root-based music. What then when the roots grow deeper and expand beyond the borders of the continent? What if the sounds, cadence, and singer-songwriter qualities of Americana are there.. just not the language? Baptiste W. Hamon has been playing and writing music professionally since about 2…
 
Americana, for all intents and purposes, is roots-based music. Sounds, songs, and stories are as much a part of the region as they are apart of the artist. Although the Americana generally adopts regional sounds and sub-genres and provides a platform with a wider national and international reach, we have to wonder what we as listeners might be losi…
 
Recorded live at the Music City Center in Nashville, this episode of the Maker’s Mic podcast follows hosts Mike Luckett and Mike Newsom as they interview John Oates, accomplished solo artist and one half of the best-selling duo of all time, Hall & Oates. Over the course of an hour, Oates discusses his songwriting process as well as different aspect…
 
Host, Robert Earl Keen speaks with frontman and lyricist BJ Barham of the band American Aquarium. BJ Barham, originally from Rockingham, North Carolina, started American Aquarium in 2006. Despite going through a number of members, Barham has stuck with the band through and through acting as the frontman and primary lyricist throughout its changes. …
 
Historic music venues are such special places. Beacons of history and culture, these venues are ones act almost as a road between the past and the present. For newer musicians taking the same stage as their heroes- and audiences getting to be apart of that moment, is a magical experience. On this episode of Word on the Street, Americana Podcast spe…
 
On Americana Podcast: The 51st State, Robert Earl Keen speaks with The White Buffalo aka Jake Smith. Smith has a way of combining plain-speak lyrics with punk-like acoustic chord progressions that become all the more powerful when partnered with his resounding and unmistakable baritone. Smith's work was used heavily in the hit show "Sons of Anarchy…
 
The legendary songwriter Blaze Foley died tragically in 1989. His catalog has lived on in the hearts of music lovers everywhere and was brought back to life in the biopic "Blaze". Adapted from Sybil Rosen's book "Living in the Woods in a Tree" and directed by Ethan Hawke, the film was released in 2018 and introduced the world to musician/actor, Ben…
 
At Americana Podcast it is our goal to define and expand on the term Americana as it applies to music. Word on the Street are brief interviews with music industry professionals and dedicated music lovers alike. On this episode of our Word on the Street segment, we speak with author, producer, and Americana champion Tamara Saviano. Saviano is a prol…
 
Since the word Americana was first used in application to music, Reckless Kelly has championed it throughout their career. Beginning in Idaho and moving down to Austin, TX, Reckless Kelly has had a long and fulfilling career without any signs of slowing down. Having made 9 studio records, attracted a loyal following, and overseen the transition of …
 
Welcome to our Word on the Street Segment of Americana Podcast! As part of our goal to define and expand the term Americana in regards to music, Word on the Street is a brief interview with either music industry professionals or a dedicated music lovers. "Word on the Street" is released two weeks after episodes of "Americana Podcast: The 51st State…
 
Robert Earl Keen talks with singer/songwriter Bruce Robison. During his career, Robison has written hits for acts including but not limited to Tim McGraw and George Strait. On this episode, Bruce Robison discusses his songwriting, changes in music production, and his thoughts on how to expand the reach of Americana music. Americana Podcast: The 51s…
 
Our guest this episode is Gordon Kennedy. The son of legendary producer, songwriter, and guitar player Jerry Kennedy, Gordon has carved out a place of his own in the world of music. He has written songs and played guitar with the likes of Peter Frampton, Garth Brooks, Ricky Skaggs, Reba McEntire, Bonnie Raitt, Tim McGraw, Wynonna, George Strait, Ca…
 
Our host, Robert Earl Keen speaks with Zach Chance and Jonathon Clay of Jamestown Revival about the early formation of their band, their songwriting process, and their growth and education as musicians. Americana Podcast: The 51st State is a platform dedicated to sharing and expanding on the Americana genre's roots, reach, and definition. Each epis…
 
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