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by Josh Hurst

by Josh Hurst Kicking the Canon Music

Johnny Cash | American Recordings

Nobody denies that Johnny Cash was a legend; his mythos looms large in Ken Burns’s Country Music documentary, as good a bellwether as any for how Cash remains one of the genre’s defining personalities. On what foundation does his legacy truly rest, though? For decades, the Man in…

December 11, 2019
by Jonathan Keefe by Josh Hurst Music

Rooted & Restless | December

Our monthly music feature, Rooted & Restless, finds country music aficionados Josh Hurst and Jonathan Keefe wading into all things Americana, expanding the definition of ‘country’ to incorporate all the permutations that the genre has opened itself up to, especially in recent years. We…

December 11, 2019
by Josh Hurst Music Rooted & Restless

Kalie Shorr | Open Book

Contrary to what the country airplay charts may tell you, the last decade has been a creatively fertile season for the women of Nashville: think of Kacey Musgraves’s small-town cynicism, Miranda Lambert’s kerosene-soaked rabble rousing, even the feisty, confessional songwriting of teenage Taylor Swift.…

December 11, 2019
by Josh Hurst Music Rooted & Restless

Tanya Tucker | While I’m Livin’

“I believe, for the most part, I done good,” sings Tanya Tucker toward the end of While I’m Livin’, her first album of original material in more than a decade. It’s a straightforward self-appraisal that caps off an album of knowing retrospection; this isn’t…

October 1, 2019
by Josh Hurst Music Rooted & Restless

The Highwomen | The Highwomen

The Highwomen were convened to address a particular problem: Gender disparity on country radio (thus far in 2019, only one woman has had a #1 single). Amanda Shires had the idea of putting together a posse of righteous singers and songwriters with the intention…

October 1, 2019
by Jonathan Keefe by Josh Hurst Music

Rooted & Restless | Issue 6

Our monthly music feature, Rooted & Restless, finds country music aficionados Josh Hurst and Jonathan Keefe wading into all things Americana, expanding the definition of ‘country’ to incorporate all the permutations that the genre has opened itself up to, especially in recent years. We…

October 1, 2019
by Josh Hurst Music Rooted & Restless

Rodney Crowell | Texas

In 2001, Rodney Crowell released an album called The Houston Kid, a loose collection of autobiographic sketches reflecting on his upbringing in the Space City. His latest is called Texas, the very title suggesting that he’s panned the camera outward and made something closer…

October 1, 2019
by Josh Hurst Kicking the Canon Music

Waylon Jennings | Honky Tonk Heroes

Waylon Jennings may not have invented outlaw country, but with Honky Tonk Heroes he gave the movement its clearest distillation of purpose; its manifesto, its aesthetic framework, even its narrative vocabulary. Naturally, for a movement so rooted in myth-making, there’s an important backstory. Jennings, along with his pal…

August 21, 2019
In Review | Online film and music criticism