Brooke Stephenson – “Backbone”
-If you’re looking for a timeless country music voice, look no further than Brooke Stephenson. I appreciate the earthy lyrics and driving rhythm. Something about the song seems to really defy genre. I’m not sure that it fits in any category, but I’m happy to support the music. Having been married to a great woman (and my best friend) for 13 years, I can’t help but think of her as my own “backbone” in this way. It hits home for me.
Robert Chaney – “Breath”
-I’m sorry but I can’t help but think of Rayland Baxter when I listen to Robert Chaney and that’s a pretty damn high compliment. Chaney’s heart just breaks right through this track. It’s about a breakup and it’s as sorrowful as it is incisive. There’s an intricate truthtelling in the lyrics that is complimented perfectly by a gently countervoice in the electric guitar. I know it was George Harrison’s guitar which once gently wept, but Chaney’s does too. It’s a tearjerker.
Hunter Callahan – “Start with tomorrow”
-This is a love song with a different focus. It’s about the importance of moving on together. There’s a real gospel core to this tune that I didn’t expect at first. But the Americana songwriting style here is captivating. I find Callahan’s vocal tone to be really solid, but it’s the overall production that puts a smile on my face. If you’ve ever experienced the bumps of a real relationship, this song will resonate in the depths of your soul.