There’s been some big news in country music this week: With the announcement of several 2020 tours involving some of the biggest names in country music, new music releases, the 94th birthday of the Grand Ole Opry, fall festivities at Silver Dollar City and more. Get up to speed on what you may have missed this week.
Sturgil Simpson News
STURGILL SIMPSON ANNOUNCES SPECIAL UNDERPLAY TOUR TO BENEFIT THE SPECIAL FORCES FOUNDATION GRAMMY® AWARD-WINNING ARTIST’S LIMITED RUN OF CLUB SHOWS KICKS OFF AT THE LEGENDARY TROUBADOUR IN WEST HOLLYWOOD THIS SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 29 TICKETS GO ON SALE WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 25, AT 10AM LOCAL THEATRICAL SCREENINGS OF “SOUND & FURY” TO TAKE PLACE AT THE ARCLIGHT CINEMA IN HOLLYWOOD ON SEPTEMBER 26 + THE IFC THEATER IN NYC ON OCTOBER 3 THE NEW YORK TIMES PROFILES SIMPSON IN THEIR SUNDAY ARTS & LEISURE SECTION; “SOUND & FURY” NAMED ONE OF THE FALL’S MOST ANTICIPATED ALBUMS BY NEW YORK MAGAZINE, BILLBOARD, AND MORE “SOUND & FURY” – THE ALBUM + NETFLIX ANIME FILM BY STURGILL SIMPSON – SET FOR SIMULTANEOUS WIDE RELEASE ON SEPTEMBER 27
The most talked-about secret at tonight’s CMA Awards: Sturgill Simpson playing outside the rules, and outside of the building as the awards glammed on inside Bridgestone Arena. Sturgill Simpson may have had a Grammy in his guitar case, but tonight he spent the evening busking for tips outside the biggest award show of the year. His little piece of sidewalk was the stage, and a few hand-drawn signs were the set as he bared his three chords and truth for anyone who would listen. The artist was flanked by an open guitar case, his Grammy award for Best Country Album, and a couple signs that read, “I don’t take requests, but I take questions about anything you want to talk about … because fascism sucks” and another sign that read, “Struggling country singer… Anything helps (all donations go to the ACLU). God Bless America.” Simpson took questions from someone off-camera who was reading Facebook Live comments and the singer also answered queries from passers-by. Over the course of 48 minutes, several fans stopped by to give him props, chat and take selfies. More than a dozen people had gathered by the end of his chat, but there were more than 79,000 who viewed the video online by the time it concluded, with a steady stream of more than 4000 watching live. “I’m just hanging out, I’m just down here being an asshole,” he quipped when asked what he was doing. – RollingStone.com (via The Tennessean) Between tunes, Sturgill took questions. Asked what he’d say in a hypothetical CMA acceptance speech, he had a few key points to hit: – “Nobody needs a machine gun, coming from a guy who owns quite a few guns.” – “Gay people should have the right to be happy….” – “Black people are probably tired of getting shot in the streets and being enslaved by the prison industrial complex….” – “Hegemony and fascism is alive and well in Nashville, Tennessee.” At the end of his concert, Simpson decided the experiment was a success. “Well, we made 13 bucks for the ACLU tonight, so it was all worth it.“ Tell us what you think!
ACCLAIMED NEW ALBUM A SAILOR’S GUIDE TO EARTH ALSO NOMINATED FOR “BEST COUNTRY ALBUM” Sturgill Simpson’s A Sailor’s Guide To Earth is nominated for “Album of the Year” at the 59th Annual Grammy Awards. The acclaimed album is also up for “Best Country Album.” The awards show will be broadcast live on CBS from L.A.’s Staples Center on Sunday, February 12 at 8/7c. Out now on Atlantic Records (purchase here), A Sailor’s Guide To Earth sold 55,000 units in its first week (with over 52,000 in pure albums sales) debuting at #1 on the Billboard Country Albums chart, #1 on the Billboard Current Albums chart, #1 on Billboard Current Digital Albums chart and #3 on the overall Billboard 200 chart. A Sailor’s Guide To Earth also debuted at #1 on the Billboard Vinyl Albums chart with over 9,400 copies sold. Additionally, the album continues to receive overwhelming critical acclaim with recent “Best of 2016” coverage running at NPR Music, Rolling Stone, Stereogum, Paste, American Songwriter among many others. Praise for A Sailor’s Guide To Earth… “…defies categorization, and exceeds expectations…”—Associated Press “It’s hard to believe any other record this year will raise as many eyebrows, invite as many questions, or be as instantly beloved.”—Esquire Magazine “…one of the year’s most impressive albums…”—Los Angeles Times “There’s no real genre category for it, and that’s a good thing. It tries out plenty of different ideas, succeeds at all of them, and presents all of them as a cohesive whole. It’s a total triumph of an album, and it’s also an absolutely singular force.”—Stereogum “Sailor’s Guide is rowdier, more emotionally insular and also far more musically surprising, an album of raw country cut with rich and messy Southern soul and sleek orchestral bombast.”—The New York Times “A Sailor’s Guide to Earth represents a startling change in tone and presents a wealth of rewards for every creative risk.”—Pitchfork “…a spectacular mic drop of a third LP.”—Rolling Stone “Simpson, to the uninitiated, is just about the best county music has to offer, which is more important in these post-Merle days.”—The Washington Post Simpson and his band recently wrapped an extensive sold-out national tour in support of the album. Of the recent show at Nashville’s historic Ryman Auditorium, the Nashville Scene praises, “…Simpson’s performance was a statement: He was there to put in work, and put in work he did,” and went on to assert his, “…raw talent and a mastery of dynamics.” Additionally, over the past eight months, Simpson has performed on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” “The Daily Show with Trevor Noah,” “Conan,” “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” “Late Night with Seth Meyers” and, most recently, “Charlie Rose.” Produced by Simpson, A Sailor’s Guide To Earth was written—beginning to end—as a letter to his first child, who arrived during the summer of 2014. Recorded primarily at Nashville’s The Butcher Shoppe, Simpson was joined in the studio by Grammy Award-winning engineer David Ferguson (Johnny Cash, John Prine, “Cowboy” Jack Clement) and assistant engineer Continue reading STURGILL SIMPSON NOMINATED FOR “ALBUM OF THE YEAR” AT THE 59TH ANNUAL GRAMMY AWARDS
STURGILL SIMPSON PERFORMS “WELCOME TO EARTH (POLLYWOG)” ON “LATE NIGHT WITH SETH MEYERS” – ON TOUR NOW – A SAILOR’S GUIDE TO EARTH DEBUTS AT #1 ON BILLBOARD COUNTRY CHART, #3 ON BILLBOARD 200 ACCLAIMED ALBUM OUT NOW ON ATLANTIC RECORDS Sturgill Simpson returned to “Late Night with Seth Meyers” last night for a performance of “Welcome To Earth (Pollywog).” Watch the full performance, which was broadcast from Washington, DC’s historic Warner Theatre, HERE. “Welcome To Earth (Pollywog)” is the opening track from Simpson’s widely praised new album A Sailor’s Guide To Earth, which sold 55,000 units in its first week (with over 52,000 in pure albums sales) debuting at #1 on the Billboard Country Albums chart, #1 on the Billboard Current Albums chart, #1 on Billboard Current Digital Albums chart and #3 on the overall Billboard 200 chart. A Sailor’s Guide To Earth also debuted at #1 on the Billboard Vinyl Albums chart with over 9,400 copies sold. In celebration of the release, Simpson is currently in the midst of an extensive North American tour, including upcoming dates at Denver’s Paramount Theatre (two nights), Seattle’s Paramount Theatre and L.A.’s The Wiltern (two nights). See below for the complete itinerary. Available now on Atlantic Records (purchase here), the album continues to receive overwhelming critical acclaim—Pitchfork proclaims, “A Sailor’s Guide to Earth finds Sturgill Simpson weirder and more adventurous than ever, forging a bold new way forward” and goes on to assert, “”It’s a deeply personal album that, while establishing Simpson as the defining songwriter of his class, displays an artistic growth that defies any sort of easy label.” Additionally, Rolling Stone awarded the album 4-stars calling it, “a spectacular mic drop of a third LP,” while The New York Times praises, “Sailor’s Guide is rowdier, more emotionally insular and also far more musically surprising, an album of raw country cut with rich and messy Southern soul and sleek orchestral bombast” and Esquire Magazine declares, “It’s hard to believe any other record this year will raise as many eyebrows, invite as many questions, or be as instantly beloved.” Moreover, NPR Music describes “Brace For Impact (Live A Little),” as “thrilling new music,” while Stereogum calls “In Bloom,” “transcendent…Simpson turne d ‘In Bloom’ into first a weepy, twangy ballad and then a celebratory blast of brass, his drawl doing justice to Cobain’s lyrics all the while.” Earlier this year, Simpson performed “All Around You” on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” “Brace For Impact (Live A Little)” on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” “In Bloom” and “Call To Arms” on “The Daily Show with Trevor Noah” and “Oh Sarah” on “Conan.” Produced by Simpson, A Sailor’s Guide To Earth was written—beginning to end—as a letter to his first child, who arrived during the summer of 2014. Recorded primarily at Nashville’s The Butcher Shoppe, Simpson was joined in the studio by Grammy Award-winning engineer David Ferguson (Johnny Cash, John Prine, “Cowboy” Jack Clement) and assistant engineer Sean Sullivan. Along with members of his touring band, Continue reading Sturgill Simpson performs "Welcome To Earth (Pollywog)" on "Late Night with Seth Meyers"