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Old 11-26-2009, 10:39 AM   #16
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Great lists, everyone.

Loretta Lynn's another one worth mentioning in here, I think. She may be more twangy and genuinely county than many of the females listed in here, but she was a ground-breaker, and surprisingly feminist for her time and for someone of her background.

A lot of the old timers are really great. It's what my parents listened to when I was a kid in the 70s, but it wasn't till I reached adulthood that I began to appreciate a lot of it.
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Old 11-26-2009, 11:18 AM   #17
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Yes to Loretta Lynn! The Van Lear Rose album is really great, and she kicked ass back in the day as well.
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Old 11-26-2009, 11:21 AM   #18
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This is just about all I can stand from Country music;

YouTube - Shania Twain - Forever And For Always: Green Edit Version
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Old 11-26-2009, 11:30 AM   #19
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You're veering into pop-country territory there.

(I do like a few Shania songs. )
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Old 11-26-2009, 01:08 PM   #20
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I love Johnny Cash, old school George Jones, Patsy Cline, Dolly Parton, Loretta Lynn, some Willie Nelson and Hank Williams. The only modern country that I think is still consistently really good is the Dixie Chicks. Their last album had more of a pop flair, but I still loved it, plus I love that they didn't back down to the backwards rednecks that keep modern country alive. And I love Taylor Swift, huge guilty pleasure. She's not so country, but she's fun.
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Old 11-26-2009, 01:23 PM   #21
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Speaking of Ryan Adams and Wilco, anyone here into Whiskeytown and/or Uncle Tupelo?
Yeah, I decided to finally check out Uncle Tupelo a few years ago after spending years obsessing over Son Volt and Wilco. And UT is absolutely worth checking into. There is not a bad album in their catalog, although the "March 16-20, 1992" album is entirely acoustic and maybe not as representative of their work and sound.

Anyway, they took country/rock music and mixed in a healthy dose of punk aesthetic. It's also interesting to note that while the albums are fairly cohesive as a whole, the songwriting personalities of Jay Farrar and Jeff Tweedy can seem as distinct as oil and water. But that opinion's colored with a lot of hindsight into their falling out. Regardless, UT represents the nascent work of two of the best songwriters of my generation. The UT material does not approach the best work of either Wilco or Son Volt, but it gives glimpses of the music that shaped them and the creative output that would come in a few years.

Unfortunately, quality Uncle Tupelo material is hard to find on you tube, but here's a sampler.

YouTube - No Depression

YouTube - Uncle Tupelo - Graveyard Shift

YouTube - Uncle Tupelo 2/91 - Gun
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Old 11-26-2009, 03:24 PM   #22
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Lucinda Williams and The Jayhawks (mostly their awesome Tomorrow The Green Grass album) have not been mentioned yet
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Old 11-26-2009, 03:42 PM   #23
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Lucinda Williams and The Jayhawks (mostly their awesome Tomorrow The Green Grass album) have not been mentioned yet
He mentioned wanting to check out Lucinda Williams in the first post, but completely agree about that Jayhawks album - that's my favorite of theirs.

I appreciate a lot about Lucinda Williams, but sometimes the sound of her voice just makes me want to claw my ears out. A little of her voice goes a very long way.

YouTube - Lucinda Williams - Drunken Angel

YouTube - The Jayhawks, live on Jon Stewart, Blue
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Old 11-26-2009, 03:51 PM   #24
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Ha, I really dig Lucinda's voice. Doesn't quite have that twangy country hiccup, and her harsher songs, like the one you just posted, are really sold by it.

Lots of great suggestions so far, excited to dig into these further.
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Old 11-26-2009, 03:54 PM   #25
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The Jayhawks aren't country (a lot of rockin' electric guitar on Tomorrow the Green Grass, including a Grand Funk Railroad cover), but their old stuff is amazing. Hollywood Town Hall is a great one.
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Old 11-26-2009, 04:01 PM   #26
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I'd put the Jayhawks (at least most of their stuff) into the alt-country genre. Everything seems so intermingled now, you're bound to find something that one person considers "x" and another considers "y."
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Old 11-26-2009, 04:31 PM   #27
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Anyway, they took country/rock music and mixed in a healthy dose of punk aesthetic.
That's a really good point, something a lot of these artists have in common, and I've frequently thought that about the older ones, too, they have the whole anti-establishment, punk ethos going on. I always think of Buddy Holly as the very first proto-punk.

Someone else I wanted to mention is Blue Rodeo, a Canadian band. They've been around since the mid 80's, around the same time that kd lang was breaking out (who, btw, started out heavily in the cowpunk genre), and they actually began as a punk band. Their basis is country rock, but they've explore a lot of genres, including blues, pop, crooner-type country, jazzy sounds - they're kind of all over the board. They have two different lead vocalists with very different voices that suit the songs very well.



YouTube - BLUE RODEO - Diamond Mine


This is the only album version of this song I could find, the video and single versions cut off the guitar solo at the end, which is an abomination, it's one of my favourite guitar solos of all time.
YouTube - Blue Rodeo - Five Days In May


YouTube - BLUE RODEO - Hasn't Hit Me Yet



YouTube - VH: Try - Blue Rodeo
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Old 11-26-2009, 06:46 PM   #28
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I'd put the Jayhawks (at least most of their stuff) into the alt-country genre. Everything seems so intermingled now, you're bound to find something that one person considers "x" and another considers "y."
I consider you "y", what do you think of that?

I know some would classify the The Jayhawks as alt-country but I don't really buy it. You can also see them listed under folk rock. I mean, if you're going to throw everything that has roots elements, then is Bob Dylan or Neil Young alt-country as well? I'd rather just throw it all under the Americana label or roots rock.

Plus, they're from Minneapolis. That's pretty far from Nashville.

Their breakout hit (and arguably their biggest song) in no way sounds country to me:

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Old 11-26-2009, 11:40 PM   #29
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Does all country need to be from Nashville? (That's a serious question - I wasn't sure if you were making a joke, or if that's some signifier for the "alt-country" tag.)

The lines blur a lot for me personally between country, alt-country, roots rock, folk and that Americana stuff, so I totally understand why I might think of something as "country" and someone else might think I'm insane.

Point taken about the Jayhawks, though.
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Old 11-27-2009, 03:52 AM   #30
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It was a joke.

BTW, I probably saw The Jayhawks about four times between the Hollywood Town Hall and Tomorrow the Green Grass albums, and one of my fondest concertgoing memories was seeing them at Milwaukeefest, where I heard Blue for the first time.
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