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A Utopian Environment: Stax Records employee Deanie Parker celebrates 60 years

This year is the 60th anniversary of the founding of the mighty Memphis soul music label Stax Records. Originally named Satellite Records, Stax and its subsidiary, Volt, released classics by […]

A View From Lubbock: The poetic songwriting of alt-country pioneer Joe Ely

Joe Ely’s talent and tenacity earned him a place among such Texas singer-songwriter peers as Guy Clark, Townes Van Zandt, Willie Nelson, Lyle Lovett and Ely’s bandmates in the Flatlanders, […]

Paul Simon, “The Concert in Hyde Park” (Legacy)

Paul Simon’s concert at the UNO Lakefront Arena in November 2011 was one of the most satisfying music events I’ve ever attended. I’d seen Simon perform before and I’ve seen […]

Vanessa Collier, “Meeting My Shadow” (Ruf)

Vanessa Collier is a quadruple threat. A Maryland-based singer, songwriter, arranger and multi-instrumentalist, she’s released a soul, blues and gospel–touched second album, Meeting My Shadow, via Germany’s Ruf Records. A […]

North Mississippi Allstars, “Prayer for Peace” (Songs of the South/ Sony Music Entertainment)

North Mississippi Allstars recorded their characteristically raw new album in Memphis, Nashville, New Orleans, Brooklyn, Austin, St. Louis, Kansas City, Missouri, and Hernando, Mississippi. Echoing the album’s scattered studio locations, […]

Van Morrison, “The Authorized Bang Collection” (Exile/Legacy)

Van Morrison’s first solo collaboration with songwriter, producer and record company owner Bert Berns yielded the Irish soul man’s debut solo hit, “Brown Eyed Girl.” As overexposed as a song […]

More Than Punk: Mike Ness of Social Distortion is gaining momentum

Mike Ness, leader of Social Distortion, forged a multidimensional punk-rock band. Aerosmith and Bad Company shaped Ness as much as the Sex Pistols and the Ramones. The Carter Family, Johnny […]

Passionate About Pops: Vocalist Catherine Russell presents The Vocal Artistry of Louis Armstrong

Catherine Russell and Satchmo SummerFest go together like red beans and rice. A Grammy-nominated jazz singer whose credits also include decades of backup singing for major stars, Russell is the […]

Sonny Landreth, “Recorded Live in Lafayette” (Provogue)

As great a concert performer as Lafayette slide guitar ruler and singer Sonny Landreth is, Recorded Live in Lafayette is only his second in-concert CD. A double-CD release, it features […]

Samantha Fish talks back

New Orleans has long been a magnet for musicians and other artists working in many disciplines. Samantha Fish, a singer, songwriter and guitarist who’s released five albums via Germany’s blues-centric […]