TIME JUMPERS AND WILLIE AND MERLE HEADLINE NU COUNTRY TV
Veteran Nashville session band The Time Jumpers headline Nu Country TV this Saturday February 18 at 9 pm on Channel 31/44 when they honour their late singer Dawn Sears in our Behind Bars segment.
Shotgun Willie Nelson and the late Merle Haggard also pay tribute to Johnny Cash in the show hosted by Mid Pacific Bob Olson and filmed and edited by Laith Graham.
Traditional singers Mo Pitney and Granger Smith keep the pure country flame burning in their new videos.
And Melbourne indigenous singer Adrian Thomas visits an Abbotsford bar to illustrate his new song about passion and pain.
Port Macquarie born singer-songwriter Aleyce Simmonds also explores the topical subject of domestic violence in her new video.
Nu Country TV is a highlight of C 31 streaming list on Digital 44.
Just follow this link on your computer or mobile phone - http://www.c31.org.au/series/487
Viewers can access new and previous Nu Country TV shows at the same link.
DAWN SEARS EVOKES TEARS
The illustrious Time Jumpers honour their revered Minnesota born singer Dawn Sears who died at 53 on December 11, 2014, in their new video for I Miss You .
Oklahoma star Vince Gill and Dawn's fiddler widower Kenny Sears perform an evocative tribute to Dawn who recorded three solo albums and joined the Time Jumpers in 1998.
I Miss You is on the band's third album Kid Sister.
Sears was born in East Grand Forks - she released debut 1990 solo album What a Woman Wants to Hear on Warner Brothers.
Dawn joined Gill's road band as a harmony vocalist and was known for her Another Dream Away - theme song for the newer Smokey & The Bandit movies starring Brian Bloom.
Sears also provided duet vocals on An Out of Control Raging Fire on Texan Tracy Byrd's 1994 debut album.
In 1994 her second album Nothin' But Good was released on Decca and lead single Runaway Train charted.
Dawn released an indie self-titled third album in 2002 and returned as backup vocalist for Gill and appeared on several Vince discs including 2003 album Next Big Thing.
But in February 2012 Sears was diagnosed with Stage 3B lung cancer.
She died in Gallatin, Tennessee on December 11, 2014, aged 53, and survived by husband Kenny and their daughter Tess.
The Time Jumpers scored major popularity with a Monday night residency - their usual day off the road - at Nashville club 3rd & Lindsley.
The band includes Gill vocals-guitars, Kenny Sears fiddle-vocals, Joe Spivey and Larry Franklin, fiddles-vocals, steel guitarist Paul Franklin, Ranger Doug Green, guitars-vocals, Billy Thomas, drums-vocals, Jeff Taylor, accordion-piano-vocals, guitarist Andy Reiss and bassist Brad Albin.
The band received four Grammy nominations including two each their 2012 self-titled album and Kid Sister.
Gill produced Kid Sister with the entire band creating arrangements.
Further info - http://www.thetimejumpers.com/
WILLIE AND MERLE MISS JOHNNY CASH
Shotgun Willie Nelson, now 83, and late Californian legend Merle Haggard honoured late mate Johnny Cash in their video shortly before Merle died on his 79th birthday on April 6
Missing Old Johnny Cash is on their third duet disc Django & Jimmie.
Cash toured Australia many times - some with Willie and The Highwaymen - and died at 71 on September 12, 2003.
Willie's next album God's Problem Child is out on Legacy Recordings on April 28, eve of his 84th birthday.
It features 13 new songs including Still Not Dead that reflect on mortality while marvelling at its beauty and absurdity.
Nelson and long-time collaborator-producer Buddy Cannon co-wrote seven songs for the album.
Jamey Johnson and Tony Joe White wrote the title track, with both singers and Leon Russell contributing guest vocals.
It may be Russell's last recording before he died on November 13.
Russell was one of Nelson's closest friends and first musician to sign his famous acoustic guitar, Trigger.
The opening song is Little House on the Hill, written by Lyndel Rhodes - Cannon's 92-year-old mother.
Texan songwriter Gary Nicholson's Merle Haggard tribute He Won't Ever Be Gone closes the album.
Willie included satirical song Delete and Fast-Forward about Donald Trump and the 2016 presidential election.
“You can't watch TV without seeing something about the inauguration,” Nelson joked.
“The polarising process is a circus and the funniest thing I've ever seen.”
Willie sings “Delete and fast-forward, my friend / the elections are over and nobody wins / but don't worry too much, you'll go crazy again / delete and fast forward, my friend.”
God's Problem Child is Willie's ninth studio album with Legacy since 2012's Heroes.
His seventh Legacy disc, Summertime: Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin , was nominated for best traditional pop vocal album at the 59th annual Grammy Awards on February 12.
MO PITNEY EVERYWHERE
Illinois young gun Mo Pitney returns to Nu Country with his video for new single Everywhere from his acclaimed debut solo disc Behind This Guitar.
Mo, just 24, is accompanied by singing spouse Emily of The Bankesters bluegrass fame, his band and their dog.
Mo and Emily were engaged in September of 2015 and wed in March, 2106, in Emily's hometown of Carbondale, Illinois.
Their daughter Evelyne Nadine Pitney was born on January 12.
Everywhere is a driving tune about taking love on the road with you everywhere you go even when you can't be with the one you love.
It's not always glamorous.
Life on the road is tough and full of sacrifices, big and small. But it makes it easier knowing that their love is, like Pitney sings, “everywhere” you go.
The pair met there as teenagers, performing at a bluegrass festival.
They reconnected a couple of years ago, after both had similar faith-related experiences; the two began talking regularly, and “all of a sudden, we both kind of realised that we weren't just friends anymore.
“We realised we wanted to be more than just friends,” Mo revealed of a long distance romance.
“From there things moved pretty quickly.”
Pitney bought an engagement ring after they'd been dating for 10 months.
GRANGER SMITH – TRACTORS AND TEACHERS
“Before the sun came up / he sipped that coffee black / slid on his muddy boots / pulled down his feed store cap,” Smith sings. “He taught me how to grease the points / on that Massey 240.”
The Tractor music video's personal elements make it a truly special viewing experience - and filming it was special for Smith.
“Making this video was very special to me,” Smith explained.
“The man isn't an actor, it's my dad's lifelong best friend. This isn't a music video set. It's dad's barn, dad's field, dad's tractor. I still miss him every day.”
Smith didn't write Tractor for Remington but his family convinced him to add it to the project.
“If other people could hear it, and hear the story and relate to that in any way, and maybe if that helps them get through a similar situation,” Smith reflects, “that's what music's all about.”
Granger worked in Nashville for five years but now lives back in Texas with actress wife Amber whom he met in one of his videos.
She has featured in several of his music videos and they have a daughter, London, born in October 2011, and son, Lincoln Monarch Smith, born January 7, 2014.
Further info - http://www.grangersmith.com/
ADRIAN THOMAS BLEEDING IN AN ABBOTSFORD BAR
Melbourne martial arts teacher Adrian Thomas brings tears to the Boogieman bar in Hoddle St, Abbotsford when he performs with a vast cast.
Bar owner Dave Battersby and younger female and male patrons help Thomas illustrate his vivid video When A Man Can't Cry He Bleeds about personal pain and suffering.
Adrian, now 40, knows plenty about family anguish.
He helped his dad raise his three younger siblings after his mum died when he was just two.
They were in foster care until his dad took over parenting in Warrnambool when he was seven and they attended St Pius primary school.
Thomas grew up in Warrnambool, the Gold Coast, Nerang and Melbourne's fringes.
He now runs local indigenous self-defense and songwriting workshops.
With a black belt in Wing Chun Kung Fu , he teaches young kids discipline and strength, and runs song writing workshops to express themselves creatively.
“I ran self-defense /anti bullying and songwriting classes in St Kilda for the City of Port Phillip ,” Thomas explained.
“I've just taken another job working with music in a Special School.”
“My dream is a world where we encourage understanding, support and give everyone equal opportunities to wake our dreams. I believe we are all capable of great things if we work hard, work together and don't give up.”
Further info - http://adrianthomasmusic.com.au/
ALEYCE SIMMONDS GOLDEN GUITARS AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
Port Macquarie born singer-songwriter Aleyce Simmonds explores pain of domestic violence victims in her video for Defeated.
Inspired by her own personal experiences and also those derived from her role as a hands-on ambassador for Tamworth Family Support Services , Aleyce says the full chorus section was written in a dream.
"I woke one morning, ran to where my phone was charging and recorded the chorus immediately into voice memos,” Aleyce added.
“I pressed stop record to realise that I was standing in blinding sunlight. I felt this weird energy around me as though the darkness had lifted somehow. Maybe for me, maybe for others that would one day hear this song and find a little more strength to change their situations."
Aleyce last appeared on Nu Country when she honoured her brother, who died 23 years ago as a baby, in her evocative video for Joshua from her second album Believe in 2015.
“I had feedback from Van Morrison that Joshua was the most heartfelt song that he'd heard in recent times after its showcase on BBC2 in the UK,” said Aleyce after she won three Southern Star indie music awards in Mildura.
“I'm extra happy about this announcement because the song that I was nominated for was Joshua that I wrote about my baby brother who would be 21 years old if he was alive today.”
Further info - www.aleycesimmonds.com
HOW TO KEEP NU COUNTRY ON AIR
We need your support as we celebrate Nu Country TV's 32nd series with Australian record companies and artists teaming to ensure our survival.
We have Kasey Chambers 11 th CD Dragonfly and Blake Shelton's 12 th CD If I'm Honest from Karen Black and Tony Midolo at Warner Music.
We also have other CDS by major artists you can win by becoming a Nu Country TV member or renewing membership.
They include singing actors Tim McGraw and Toby Keith, Ashley Monroe, Brad Paisley, Carrie Underwood, Gary Allan, Dierks Bentley, Eric Church and more.