The Award-Winning Day 3 @ Nashville

Our wonderful day three at Americana Music Festival

This is to going to be a day to savour.

From our house we headed East to Music Row on the way to Compass Records.  Along the way we had a coffee at the Pop Rock Cafe (note to self: when ordering soy milk, stipulate regular soy, to avoid vanilla soy).

At Compass Records on 19th Avenue in the heart of Music Row, there were four performances upstairs in the recording studio. The Duhks (pronounced Ducks), Jim Oblon, John Cowan and Mike Farris.

The three of us got good seats and were entertained and moved for around four hours.  The Duhks hail from Canada and have recently got back into the business with the return of their lead singer.  The band is coming off the back of a new album, which I reviewed a while back – look here if you wish.  Wonderful to see them live, steeped in traditional roots music, but with a kick and an approach that sets them out from the pack.

Jim Oblon has a bluesy sound, a fluid Fender Telecaster player and a laid-back Willie Nelson voice.  He seems to prefer plenty of instrumental space and it was a proficient groove.  Having Bucky Baxter, the crack pedal steel player, in the band was a treat.

John Cowan, who spent a fair time on the stage at The Ryman on Monday night for The Leftover Salmon show, was up next.  A tremendous voice, soulful and elegant.  He has a new album out Sixty, I believe so named for the number of musicians helping out on the recordings.

Then Mike Farris rounded out proceedings.  The former Stevie Ray Vaughn Double Trouble member has been on an upward career journey of late – his new album is a strong outing – check out my review if you wish.  It was a tremendous set – “Power of Love” and Mary Gauthier’s beautiful “Mercy Now” highlights.

After this we ambled downstairs – too late for the free hot dogs (I was going to pass on those anyway) and too pressed for time for the free beer. Some conversations and thank you’s followed.  Sandra and Trish headed to the Hutton Hotel for their conference goody bags and I walked downtown.

The walk from Music Row to the base of Capitol Hill was a decent stride and I arrived at the Musicians Hall of Fame after 45 minutes.  The purpose of this event was to open an exhibition in honor of the band BR5-49.  For information on this, check out this link.

It was just before 5pm with a rendezvous with Sandra and Trish scheduled for 6.30.  I was tired, hungry and thirsty and in need of Wi-fi.  As I ambled down 6th Avenue, I remembered the Frothy Monkey and headed there.  Not only was it open , but it was Wednesday Wine Down from 5 to 7.  Four wine tasting glasses of Italian wine and unlimited chess, fruit and breads (and Wi-fi access).”, all for $15. Heaven.

To the Americana Honors and Awards Show at The Ryman Auditorium.  Now I’m not going to give a detailed run-down of who won what, I’ll leave that for others to do.  I will say this, from 7pm to a bit after 10pm this Wednesday night in Nashville, I was treated to something special – a line-up of my favourite performers and performances under one roof that I may never see the like of again.  Here’s the list of artists on show for this ONE event:

Doug Seegers, Jim Lauderdale, Don Wass, Buddy Miller, Loretta Lynn, Rodney Crowell, Ry Cooder, Parker Millsap, Flaco Jiminez, The Devil Makes Three, Hurray For The Riff Raff, Carlene Carter, Vince Gill, Valerie June, Robert Ellis, Roseanna Cash, Keb Mo, Taj Mahal, Patty Griffin, Robert Plant, Jason Isbell, Amanda Shires, Sarah Jarosz, The Milk Carton Kids, Emmylou Harris, JP White, St Paul & The Broken Bones, Cassandra Wilson, Marty Sturat, Kenny Vaughn, Sturgill Simpson, Hard Working Americans, JD Souther, Jackson Browne, Lucinda Williams and Josh Ritter

A wonderful show, profoundly moving and a pertinent reminder of all the brilliant, recent music that has been created and made available to us.  I was especially pleased that Jason Isbell won three awards – Best Artist, Best Song and Best Album for Southeastern.

It was then time to buy a T-shirt and poster of the event – the latter will look good next to the framed print of last year’s show in the study at home.

Aboard the shuttle bus to a new venue The City Winery, so new in fact that you could smell the fresh timber (or lumber as they say locally).  The first act was Caleb Klauder Country Band, a pleasant western swing outfit that was good after all the excitement at The Ryman.  Sturgill Simpson followed and, let me say, totally absorbing and impressive.  It is said that he is the new, brave face of Outlaw Country and I can see why.  He looks like he was born on stage, a terrific voice and strong, no-nonsense attitude.   The band was outstanding.  I must buy his last album.

It was after midnight and Lindi Ortega was next.  Unfortunately for Lindi, a lot of the crowd was leaving but lucky for us as we could go to the very front table and watch her put in a terrific set – I hadn’t seen her with a band before and tonight it was a real rocking sound and her voice was a standout.  It was good to reader Clay from Nashville at the end of the show.

A weary walk home and hit the pillow relatively quickly.

Dear beloved reader, this day is one that I will remember for ever.

 

Our wonderful day three at Americana Music Festival

Our wonderful day three at Americana Music Festival

 

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Author: Rob Dickens

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