Thursday, October 27, 2016

The 2015/1967 Countdown - 10/27/2016 Update

Today, in (I promise) our very last post before moving on to our 2015/1967 countdown proper, we listen to songs from two of the most exciting names to emerge in country music over the last few years.

Let's start with 2015, and in 2015, no country artist had a bigger commercial breakthrough than songwriter Chris Stapleton.

An industry veteran who had already written over 150 produced songs for other artists in the previous decade (including six number ones on the country charts), Stapleton finally branched out on his own in 2015 with his solo debut Traveller and boy did he hit it big.

Traveller went on to become the best-reviewed country album of 2015, won several Grammys, and spawned a number of fantastic tracks, including the rousing Parachute, featured on our 2015 Crowd Pleasers mix.

We'll talk at a later date about another Traveller track, Stapleton's unreal cover of the country standard Tennessee Whiskey, in our actual Best Songs Of 2015 countdown, but for now, here's the Saturday Night Live performance of Parachute.

Now let's move on to a song from 2014's biggest breakout country artist.

Turtles All The Way Down is a wonderful little faith-questioning ballad from a man many are starting to believe represents the future of country music, Sturgill Simpson.

A musical omnivore, Simpson is well versed in country tradition, but much like Kanye West with regards to hip-hop, has an innate ability and seemingly unrelenting desire to expand his music beyond those traditional genre boundaries, hence his logical inclusion on the 2015 Coachella line-up and his representation on our 2015 Coachella Starters mix.

The album from which Turtles was pulled, Metamodern Sounds In Country Music, the top-reviewed country album of 2014, is excellent and well worth checking out, even for those that don't consider themselves everyday country fans...and in a bit of Best of 2016 foreshadowing, I can say his follow-up album A Sailor's Guide To Earth is even more expansively genre-bending and adventurous.

Without question, Simpson is one to keep an eye on.

Here's a nifty acoustic solo performance of Turtles from Live In The Morgue.

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