Trailer for Hank Williams Biopic “I Saw the Light”

Hank Williams Movie

Earlier this year, we saw a short preview of actor Tom Hiddleston as country music legend Hank Williams in the upcoming movie I Saw the Light. Now, we get a longer look at the Hank Williams biopic in a new trailer.

Hiddleston did all of his own singing in the film, so in the two-minute trailer, we hear Hiddleston singing Williams’s 1951 song “Hey Good Lookin’.” The clip also illustrates that the movie explores Williams’s turbulent love life and problems with alcoholism. Check it out.

I Saw the Light hits theaters in general release on March 25, 2016.

What do you think of the trailer for the Hank Williams movie? Leave your two cents in the comments.

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    Dwight Yoakam on Acting and Music

    Dwight Yoakam interview
    In this new video from the Weekly Feed, country singer-songwriter Dwight Yoakam discusses acting, country music, and his next CD. Yoakam explains to interviewer Kyle Meredith how he came to sing a Creedance Clearwater Revival song recently as a character on CBS’s Under The Dome. He also explains why when he does cover songs, he usually tries to avoid iconic recordings. Other topics include Yoakam’s thoughts on David Bowie, Buck Owens, T-Rex, and the state of the music industry.

    Yoakam is one of the more intelligent artists around and he has a great understanding of history, so it is always enlightening to hear him talk about various subjects. So check out this interview from the WFPK studios in Louisville, Kentucky.

    Below is the clip from Under the Dome that he discusses, where his character sits in jail and sings “Who’ll Stop the Rain.”

    If all that leaves you wanting more Yoakam, below is the song he mentions at the end of the interview, “A Heart Like Mine,” from his 3 Pears (2012) CD. The song was co-produced by Beck.

    What is your favorite Dwight Yoakam song? Leave your two cents in the comments.

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    Marty Brown in Middletown, NY (Concert Review)

    Marty Brown New York As a long-time fan of country singer-songwriter Marty Brown, I was happy to finally see him sing live with a relaxed intimate performance at Brian’s Backyard BBQ & Blues in Middletown, New York on Saturday, July 5. And I was not disappointed.

    Brown performed his main set solo with an acoustic Gibson guitar, and he also sang several songs with the opening act, country rock band Blanco Diablo. The different accompaniments allowed the singer to show his versatility and his voice that still hits the same broad range from his younger days. One minute with the band he had the crowd clapping along on Johnny Cash’s “Folsom Prison Blues.” Then, a little while later, one could hear a pin drop when he gave a moving solo acoustic rendition of Hank Williams Jr.’s “Blues Man.”

    Brown, who released several albums in the 1990s and had a career resurgence after several appearances last year on America’s Got Talent, gives a show that any fan of classic country music should check out. He covered songs like Willie Nelson’s “Whiskey River” and George Jones’s “He Stopped Loving Her Today.” He performed Merle Haggard’s “Sing Me Back Home,” where in the closing verse he tacked on the similarly themed “Green, Green Grass of Home.” His wife Shellie Brown joined the singer on stage for a few songs, including an excellent version of the Cash-Carter staple “Jackson.” Brown also put his own stamp on a few non-country songs, getting the crowd to join in on Don McLean’s “American Pie.” And, of course, he sang the song that started his run on America’s Got Talent, “Make You Feel My Love,” explaining in the introduction that he had just recorded the Bob Dylan song for upcoming release.

    Marty Brown BannerBecause I own every Marty Brown album, my highlights occurred when Brown performed his own songs (or put his stamp on something obscure). Brown is a great songwriter, so I would have liked to have heard even more songs from his own pen as well as other songs from his own albums. The songs he performed near the end of the show, including his composition “Jackpot Lucky,” created the most memorable moments for me. When he sang his recent single “Whatever Makes You Smile,” it reinforced the fact that his own songs stand up favorably even when played next to the classics.

    During the show, Brown also kept the audience entertained by telling stories and interacting with the audience. He and his wife mingled with the audience before, after, and between sets, making themselves available to fans for photos, questions, song requests, autographs, etc. Brown reveals a refreshing joy in his music and an appreciation of his fans, both qualities that are genuine, heartfelt, and rare.

    Overall, it was a great show and music fans should check out Brown if he comes to your area. His website lists upcoming shows, some of which feature his own band, in New York, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, California, etc. You can find out how to order his latest CD, Country Strong, through his Facebook page. If you are unfamiliar with his music, check out this acoustic performance of “The Day the Bootlegger Died,” which appeared on his album, Here’s to the Honky Tonks (1996).

    The venue, Brian’s Backyard BBQ & Blues, provided an intimate setting for the performance, as well as some excellent barbeque. If you live anywhere near New York City, it is only a little more than an hour outside the city and worth checking out for its live music and food.

    Photo of Marty Brown performing in Middletown, NY by Chimesfreedom. Leave your two cents in the comments.

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    A Lost CD of Marty Brown: “American Son” (Review)

    Last April in “The Great Lost Career of Marty Brown,” I bemoaned the fact that country singer Marty Brown had not had a major label CD release since 1998, and I imagined how one day Brown would be rediscovered with a pile of songs he had been writing and recording for more than a decade. While I still wait for Brown to recapture the fame he deserves, the many responses to that post revealed that many people still love his music. Fortunately, Brown continues to perform at local venues and continues to write new songs at a healthy rate. He recently even put out a new homemade music video. And back in 2002, Brown put together a collection of songs on an album called American Son as a comeback of sorts, but it was never released. I recently discovered that Marty Brown and his wife Shellie Brown were making that CD available for the first time, so I ordered one immediately. I was not disappointed.

    Marty Brown American Son American Son is a collection of the type of songs fans might expect from Brown, as he sings about love (i.e., “Love Happens,” “Make My Heart Your Home,” “Where’d You Come From?”), country fun (“Work Hard Havin’ Fun,” “Crackerjack”), and perhaps influenced by the time the album was recorded not long after 9/11, a couple of patriotic songs, including the title song and the still relevant “P.O.W.’s at the V.F.W.”

    Many of my favorite Marty Brown originals are his heartbreak songs, and that is true for American Son too. Brown always has had a great talent for turning a clever phrase and when he combines that writing skill with his great classic country twang, he cannot be matched by anyone recording today. His heartbreak songs on this album include “Friends,” where the singer tells a love that he cannot “just” be friends, and “The Devil Was an Angel Too.” The latter song has a refrain from the apologizing man that seems so clever I wonder why nobody else has thought of it. I also wonder why nobody else has covered the outstanding song.

    I have had the CD on repeat play for the last two weeks, and today my favorite song on the CD is “Leavin’ Side of Me.” The title tells you what it is about, but when you hear Brown’s voice say, “And I think it’s time you saw/ The leavin’ side of me,” the vulnerability and pain breaks your heart like what you hear in the great songs of Waylon Jennings, Hank Williams, and Otis Redding.

    Because the album was not an official release, there is no fancy CD packaging, but Brown will autograph the CD for you for free. More importantly, it is the music you want, and they did not skimp on the recording. The quality of the sound, the musicians, and Brown’s voice, are all top notch.

    Conclusion? If you are not familiar with Marty Brown’s work, you may want to check out some of his other music first, but if you are a fan, American Son is another excellent CD to add to your collection (or a great holiday gift for someone who likes genuine country music). You may order American Son by emailing Shellie Brown at ilikeitthatwaymusic@yahoo.com for more details. They also have other new music from Marty Brown, including Marty Brown: All American Cowboy, Marty Brown Exclusive, and a Christmas CD. (FYI, I have no affiliation with the sales of the new CDs and am providing the ordering information as a service to other fans like me.) You may find updates on upcoming shows on Marty Brown’s Facebook page and in the comments to our previous post on Marty Brown’s career.

    What is your favorite Marty Brown CD? Leave your two cents in the comments.

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    Troubadour George Strait Announces His Final Tour

    George Strait press conference

    Although I have never been a big follower George Strait‘s career, like most fans of country music, I am surprised by how many songs of his I know. And I cannot dispute that he is a country music legend. Because of all that, I was sad to hear that he recently announced at a press conference that he is beginning his final tour, the “The Cowboy Rides Away Tour,” which will end in 2014. But he does not rule out making appearances after this tour ends. At the beginning of the press conference below, several country music stars pay tribute to Strait.

    So we wish Strait good luck as he embarks on this final tour. One of my favorite songs he recorded was a duet he did with Alan Jackson, “Murder on Music Row,” from the Latest Greatest Straitest Hits (2000) CD. The song laments the Nashville trend toward pop and away from traditional country music. Certainly, after Strait rides off into the sunset, there will be even less country music coming out of Nashville.

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