Tag Archives: Dwight Yoakam

Best albums of 2012: number 16 to 20

Van Morrison – Born To Sing No Plan B 16

16. Van Morrison – Born to sing,  No plan B

2012 is a year filled with many great album releases. Almost all “endyear lists” I’ve seen fails to include “Born To Sing, No Plan B”.. and that’s a shame. It might no be among the man’s best albums, but it’s still a fantastic album.

Solid band (as always), great vocal, good songs, interesting lyrics, jazzy, soulful, moody & and a brilliant trombone (Alistair White).

When you’re in need of some VM (as we all are sometimes), please check out this new album.. you will not be disappointed, I promise.

Reminds me of: a Van Morrison in excellent form



  • Egil: Born To Sing, Open The Door, If in money we trust
  • Hallgeir: If in money we trust, Pagan Heart, Mystic of the east

Born to sing (Official video):


Dwight Yoakam 3 Pears 17

17. Dwight Yoakam – 3 Pears

It’s been seven  years since Dwight Yoakam’s last gave us a proper release, 2005′s Blame the Vain. He’s done some acting, he’s done some producing, did some concerts and a tribute album to Buck Owens but he has been sorely missed.

Back on a major label one should think that Yoakam would sound mainstream country, not so at all. He has clearly listened to the new wave of the indie folk/country wave that is happening these last years. Beck is producing on a couple of tracks and Dwight Yoakam produces some tracks himself, they sound very new, almost like a new artist. He has not lost his pop sensibility and his ear for catchy tunes.  That doesn’t mean that he has abandonded his honkey tonk roots, and he really let it comes out in a song like, Dim Lights, Thick smoke.

Dwight Yoakam sounds like a cross between The Monkees and Jerry Lee Lewis on A heart like mine!

Catchy, great tunes and still so goddam cool!

– Hallgeir


  • Egil: Take Hold Of My Heart, Trying, Dim Lights, Thick Smoke
  • Hallgeir: Rock it all away, Missing Heart, A heart like mine and Trying


Shovels and Rope o be joyful 18

18. Shovels and Rope – O’ Be Joyful

Shovels and Rope sounds like children of both punk and country, and their intimate debut   has a brooding  darkness throughout. The southern gothic is prominent, even the name hints at darkness. It excites me that country music can be so bold and so fresh. I say country music but it is just as much rock’n roll.

The couple (Cary Ann Hearst and Michael Trent) released a CD called Shovels And Rope, but this is the first release where they call their band Shovels and Rope. This mix of dark country and old time rock reminds me of Jack White and Loretta Lynn, the rhythm track is simple but the melodies are wonderful.

Dark and haunting contemporary country/rock music.

– Hallgeir


  • Egil: Birmingham, Lay Low, Shank Hill St.
  • Hallgeir: Birmingham, Hail Hail, Tickin’ Bomb and Shank Hill St.


I Was a King You Love it Here 19

19. I Was A King – You Love It Here

I Was A King has a fine mix of powerpop, guitar walls and great song writing. The guitars are “byrdsy” jangly and this time they flirt even more with the American side of indie-americana-pop. So you see, they’re kinda hard to describe. But they sound terrific!

IWAK has  gotten together with two fantastic popmusic masters this time, Norman Blake (Teenage Fanclub vocalist, yes him!) and Robyn Hitchcock (Power-pop godfather, The Soft Boys member and solo artist extraordinaire), what a dream-team!

When i first read about it I really couldn’t believe it, it’s a match made in heaven.

The result of this collaboration is IWAK’s best album, a fully realised record with great songs. It sounds so big and it is full of air, but it’s not pretentious at all. They sound more mature and more pop. The Playing is better than ever and the songwriting is spectacular, I realy love this album (You guessed that, eh?) and it is a quintessential pop album. A love letter to music, no less.

Jangly, infectious and very, very good.

– Hallgeir


  • Egil: Frozen Disease, A Million Signs, Indiana
  • Hallgeir: A Million Signs, Food Wheels, Superhero and Leave


Katleen Edwards Voyageur 20

20. Kathleen Edwards – Voyageur

I really like break-up albums, I love Blood on the tracks, I love Springsteen’s Tunnel of Love and I love when Jackson Browne sing about his break-ups. Kathleen Edwards is now part of this rich tradition of soul wreching songwriters. Maybe not quite on their level, yet, but she is becoming a very good songwriter, and she is at the top of her game on this album.

But it is not all gloom, she sounds as she’s coping. Actually it sounds that she’s on her way up from the bleakness, the album is full of hope. The songs are really strong an Justin Vernon’s involvement has brought out unknown elements in Kathleen Edwards songs.

Spacious, hopeful and sad, in a good way.

– Hallgeir


  • Egil: Chameleon/Comedian, Change The Sheets, House Full of Emty Rooms,
  • Hallgeir: Chameleon/Comedian, House Full of Emty Rooms, Going To Hell


The complete LIST


Dwight Yoakam Top 10 Music Videos

I’ve liked Dwight Yoakam since the late eighties. There was a music magazine here in Norway, Beat, that really championed those new country artists and I was smitten. His first two records really got worn out at my student home in Bergen.

Today I am going to list his 10 best videos (you know he came up at the same time as MTV and he’s always had great music videos). This is my own list and it is not discussed with Egil (the other half of JV) before putting it out here.

1. Guitars, Cadillacs:

2. Streets of Bakersfield (with Buck Owens):

Dwight Yoakam to the magazine Country Guitar in 1994:

‘Bakersfield’ really is not exclusively limited to the town itself but encompasses the larger California country sound of the Forties, Fifties and on into the Sixties, and even the Seventies, with the music of Emmylou Harris, Gram Parsons, the Burrito Brothers and the Eagles — they are all an extension of the ‘Bakersfield Sound’ and a byproduct of it. I’ve got a poster of Buck Owens performing at the Fillmore West in 1968 in Haight Asbury! What went on there led to there being a musical incarnation called country rock. I don’t know if there would have been a John Fogerty and Creedence Clearwater Revival had there not been the California country music that’s come to be known as the ‘Bakersfield Sound’.

Continue reading Dwight Yoakam Top 10 Music Videos

Today: Dwight Yoakam is 56

The primary purpose in [performing] is to receive that pure inspiration that I derived from it when I was a kid the first time I saw one of those guitar slingers on television cock his leg and throw that guitar down and start doing a song and became completely infatuated with that and the moment that I was able to transport myself to another place, another plane of existence, by doing it alone in a room, you know, and realizing the enormous satisfaction from doing that … I don’t ever want to risk losing that as the primary catalyst for what I do musically.~
~Dwight Yoakam

From Wikipedia:

Birth name Dwight David Yoakam
Born October 23, 1956 (age 56)
Pikeville, Kentucky,United States
Origin Columbus, Ohio, United States
Genres Country Rock
Occupations Singer-songwriter, actor, director
Instruments Guitar, vocals
Years active 1984–present
Labels Reprise
New West
Warner Bros. Nashville
Associated acts Buck Owens
Website http://www.dwightyoakam.com/

Dwight David Yoakam (born October 23, 1956) is an American singer-songwriter, actor and film director, most famous for his pioneering country music. Popular since the early 1980s, he has recorded more than twenty-one albums and compilations, charted more than thirty singles on the Billboard Hot Country Songs charts, and sold more than 25 million records.

Guitars, Cadillacs:

From allmusic.com – Stephen Thomas Erlewine:

With his stripped-down approach to traditional honky tonk and Bakersfield country, Dwight Yoakamhelped return country music to its roots in the late ’80s. Like his idols Buck Owens, Merle Haggard, andHank Williams, Yoakam never played by Nashville’s rules; consequently, he never dominated the charts like his contemporary Randy Travis. Then again, Travis never played around with the sound and style of country music like Yoakam. On each of his records, he twists around the form enough to make it seem like he doesn’t respect all of country’s traditions. Appropriately, his core audience was composed mainly of roots rock and rock & roll fans, not the mainstream country audience. Nevertheless, he was frequently able to chart in the country Top Ten, and he remained one of the most respected and adventurous recording country artists well into the ’90s.
…read more over @ allmusic.com 

a medley performed @ The Grand Ole Opry:


Album of the day – Guitars, Cadillacs, etc etc (1986):

From allmusic.com – Thom Jurek:
Dwight Yoakam’s Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc., Etc. began as an EP issued on the California Oak label. When Reprise signed him, they added four more tracks to the mix to round it out as an album. Yoakam, a Kentuckian, brought country music back into its own medium by reviving the classic Bakersfield sound with the help of his producer and lead guitarist, former Detroiter Pete Anderson. As a result, the “new traditionalist” movement was born, but Yoakam was always a cut or three above the rest, as this album displays in spades. Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc., Etc. kicks off with a smoking cover of Johnny Horton’s “Honky Tonk Man,” a song now so closely associated with Yoakam, the original has all but been forgotten. But this is only the beginning. Yoakam’s own songs such as “Bury Me,” a duet with Maria McKee, and “South of Cincinnati” reference both the pastoral and dark sides of his native state. “South of Cincinnati” is a paean to those who left Kentucky for Ohio in search of jobs, and “Bury Me” celebrates the land itself. In addition, the title track, with Anderson’s Don Rich-influenced guitar style, walks the Buck Owens line until the line extends to Yoakam. With fiddles and backing vocals, Yoakam’s street poetry is both poignant and profound, built into a barroom anthem. In addition to this there is the gorgeous “Miner’s Prayer,” an acoustic number powered by dobro (courtesy of David Mansfield), flat-picked guitar, and Yoakam’s singing of his grandfather and generations like him who lived and died in the mines of Kentucky. Here Bill Monroe meets Ralph Stanley meets Bob Dylan.  .. read more @ allmusic.com

Other October 23:

Continue reading Today: Dwight Yoakam is 56