Wien Solo – “The Line”
-There’s a raw energy to this song that wins me over right away. The steel guitar is great, of course, but the vocals are really incredible as well. The lonesome style of the vocals really helps this slow western swing aesthetic. It’s truly a creative mashup of old time styles for something that feels lyrically quite present. This is an important song for the Americana genre in 2020.
Michael McArthur – “Oh Sedona”
-The lyrics of this song are about the Sedona desert in the American southwest, but it has that transcendent power of classic tune. It reminds me a little of “Sittin’ on the Dock of the Bay” for some reason. Even if you’ve never seen the red rocks of Sedona, there’s a core to the song about a memory of a loved one that almost anyone can relate to. Sit down and focus on McArthur’s songwriting here; it’ll enrich your soul.
Kurtis James – “Where I was”
-If you’re a fan of the rambling country singers from the 70s like Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson, give Kurtis James a spin. This was one of those songs that I clicked on and kind of couldn’t believe my ears. Was this really written in 2020, or was it a classic country deep cut? But the more I listen to the song, the more evident it is that James is the real deal in songwriting. I’d like someone to fly him to Nashville (or better yet Austin) to work with some like minded classic country folks. He could write some great stuff!