Paisley Field: “Glitter and Sawdust” by Eileen Shapiro

On April 27th, the new release from Paisley Field will be officially unleashed to the entire world. The country sensation and front man James Wilson will be celebrating its release with the band and a host of many at C’Mon Everybody, and you’re all invited…


The album has one of the coolest names on the planet, “Glitter and  Sawdust”, as well as many great new country tunes.  In support of the album the band will be heading out on tour and also will be playing Detroit Pride. 


I spoke with James and below is a full itinerary of his whereabouts, or how you can find him aside from playing piano at some of New York’s finest clubs and bars. 


With your album coming out so soon, what do you have planned for an album release party?

We’re throwing a big party at C’Mon Everybody April 12th with our good friends Karen & the Sorrows and Mylo! It’s a night to celebrate the album with everyone, play some music and have a good time. The album officially comes out April 27th, but you can hear the new songs live and pre-order a copy of the record at the show. Tickets are available now:

How are you preparing for Chicago Pride?

It’s actually Detroit Pride! Listening to a lot of Smokey Robinson. Detroit has such a rich musical history. 


Since we last spoke what have you been up to?

We just finished up a residency at Hank’s Saloon which was amazing. I love that place and it was a thrill to have our first NYC residency be at Hank’s. We put out “The Door”, the first single from Glitter & Sawdust, and we started taking pre-orders. Now we’re gearing up for April 12th and preparing for our tours this spring and summer.

Are you planning to tour in support of the album?

Yes! We start touring the end of April with dates in Toronto, Rochester, Ottawa and Kingston. In May we are heading to California to play with some of our musical inspirations Lavender Country. They were the first band to put out a gay country album and it’s revolutionary. You need to hear it if you haven’t. Our good friend Eli Conley hosts the Queer Country West Coast shows at El Rio where we’ll be playing in San Francisco. This concert series was created by Karen Pittelman and it’s really grown. We’re thrilled to be a part of it. We have a whole bunch of other dates including a big queer music festival I’m putting on June 2nd at Drom in NYC. You can find a full list of dates in the tour section on our website.


Who named the album and what was the inspiration?

I’ve been thinking a lot about gender identity and gender roles lately. Glitter & Sawdust is about embracing both the masculine and feminine sides of yourself. There are always those people who want to put you in a box and say you’ve got to be this way, or you’ve got to be that way. I’ve always felt like a bit of an enigma and I’ve never really fit into one category. And I don’t think as humans we are meant to fit into one category. Even when it comes to the gay community. Like as a gay dude you’re expected to be a twink or a bear or a theater queen or whatever. I never identified with any of that. I always thought, can’t I just be me? Glitter & Sawdust is my clumsy way of trying to explain that. I came up with the title, but the album itself is very collaborative. 


I loved your behind the scenes video, where can someone view it?

Thank you!! You can see it on our youtube channel. Subscribe while you’re there!

What will your next single be off the album?

The next single is “Keep Swimming,” the first track on Glitter & Sawdust. I’m excited to be working with director Matthew Pandolfe for the first time. We’re coming up with some really fun ideas for the video.  

Anything I forgot?


I think that pretty much covers it! We are ready to get out on the road and for people to hear Glitter & Sawdust. 



Follow Paisley Fields on Twitter @ThePaisleyField


John Errol just premiered his second single, “Dead Man Walking” last week (FADERNylonHype Machine). 

John wrote, produced, mixed & mastered “Dead Man Walking” himself,  as well as all of the songs from his unreleased EP. In terms of instruments, John is credited for vocals, guitar, bass, drums, programming, organ, and synth.

It’s kind of a huge departure from his first release, but is the first, formal introduction to the sound & texture of his upcoming material.

Review from MyKindCountry.
Even if the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band had never made another album after this one, they would have still deserved a place in country music history. This groundbreaking album teamed up the young folk-rockers with country hearts with a selection of veterans including some from the early days of recorded country music, performing music mostly from the same era. It was a triple LP, but was remastered and released as a double CD in 2002, and is also available digitally. There is a friendly living room atmosphere, with snippets of the chat in the studio between tracks.
The various instrumental tracks and backings are brilliantly played by the Nitty Gritties and their guests, often anchored by Earl Scruggs and fiddler Vassar Clements.

The album opens with bluegrass singer Jimmy Martin (1927-2005) singing Hylo Brown’s ‘Grand Ole Opry Song’, which pays affectionate tributes to the stars of the Opry past and present. The song’s subject sets the mood for the whole project. This was one of the singles released to promote the album. It is very charming, but wasn’t very commercial even in the 1970s. Martin’s former boss Bill Monroe had declined to take part in the sessions, distrusting the young men from California, and reportedly regretted that decision once he heard the end result; but Martin’s piercing tenor is a strong presence on a number of tracks. ‘Sunny Side Of The Mountain’ and ‘My Walkin’ Shoes’ are a bit more standard pacy bluegrass – brilliantly performed, but they don’t really hit the heartstrings. The plaintive ‘Losin’ You (Might Be The Best thing Yet)’ is more affecting, and ‘You Don’t Know My Mind’ is also good.

Roy Acuff (1903-1992) was also dubious about the project, but having agreed to take part was quickly won over by the long haired youngsters’ genuine love of country music and their musicianly skills. Known as the King of Country Music, Acuff was the biggest star in country in the 1940s, and one of the influences on artists like George Jones. Even after his commercial star had faded, he remained a very visible presence in the genre, as a stalwart of the Opry and as co-owner of the music publishing company Acuff Rose. He sings some of his signature gospel-infused tunes ‘The Precious Jewel’, the gloomy ‘Wreck On The Highway’, plus the lonesome love song ‘Pins And Needles In My Heart’. He also takes the lead on Hank William’s joyful country gospel classic ‘I Saw The Light’, enthusiastically backed by the NGDB and Jimmy Martin on the chorus.

Mother Maybelle Carter (1909-1978) represents the earliest country recordings and the crystallization of country as a genre from Appalachian folk and the popular music of the day. She sings the lead on the optimistic ‘Keep On The Sunny Side’, a turn of the century religious tune which was one of the Carter Family’s first recordings in the 1920s. Her vocals are thickened with age (and she was never the lead voice in the original Carter Family, taking second place vocally to sister in law Sara), but backed by a chorus of other participants there is a warm familial atmosphere which is quite endearing, and the playing is impeccable. ‘I’m Thinking Tonight Of My Blue Eyes’, another Carter Family classic, and ‘Wildwood Flower’ are also charming.

Flatpicking guitarist Merle Travis sings ‘I Am A Pilgrim’, the coalmining ‘Dark As A Dungeon’ and ‘Nine Pound Hammer’; these are delightful and among my favorite tracks, particularly ‘Dark As A Dungeon’. Another guitar legend, Doc Watson, who surprisingly only met Travis for the first time at these sessions, takes on vocal duties for Jimmie Driftwood’s always enjoyable story song ‘Tennessee Stud’ as well as the traditional ‘Way Downtown’.

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band harmonise nicely on a tasteful version of A P Carter’s delicately pretty ‘You Are My Flower’. Their vocal style betrays their folk-rock roots, but the instrumentation is perfectly authentic. They also picked out some Hank Williams classics to spotlight their own vocals. Jimmie Fadden leads on ‘Honky Tonking’, and Jeff Hanna gives ‘Honky Tonk Blues’ a Jimmie Rodgers style edge with his voice sounding as though at any moment he’s going to break into a fully fledged yodel. Jimmy Ibbotson takes on ‘Lost Highway’ (penned by Leon Payne but most associated with Hank)..Their vocals sound a little tentative compared with their more confident later work, but the songs are beautifully played. That is actually a reasonable assessment of the whole album – there is nothing to criticise musically, but the vocals, while honest and authentic, are not up to the standard of, say, today’s best bluegrass.

Pretty much the entire lineup participates in the title song, an inspired choice. The song’s own message is a spiritual one but in the context of this project it has a metaphorical second meaning. The messages of unity and tradition are underpinned by the cover art with its use of US and Confederate flags, and the legend “Music forms a new circle”.

This album is a towering achievement and one of the most significant in country music history. It united two generations, linking the up and coming country rockers with the men and women who had in effect created country music as a unique and definable genre. If you have any interest in music history, it’s a must-have.


Review form Pitchfork.
Blitzen Trapper’s breakthrough album, Wild Mountain Nation (which they self-released last year), caught fire thanks, in part, to its eclecticism and try-anything-once spirit. The Portland, Oregon-based sextet poured twangy Deadhead jams, loose, do-it-yourself Pavement sprawl, muscular Lynyrd Skynyrd riffs, anachronistic synthesizer bursts, and scruffy Band melodies into a rangy collection that was as thrilling for its stylistic alchemy as it was for its infectious good vibes. Precisely what made it so beguiling, however, also made it slightly infuriating: there was no cohesion between all of the diverse yet charmingly shaggy tracks, each one representing a specific sliver of Blitzen Trapper’s multiple personalities. It was a gripping mishmash, and it proved that its creators had an obsession with the sounds of the 1970s and a gift for ramshackle melodies. But it left curious listeners wondering who Blitzen Trapper really were. For their follow-up (and Sub Pop debut), the band has narrowed its scope, sharpening their focus, and the result proves they don’t need to try so many different approaches when they’ve found one that works so well.
Furr, the band’s fourth full-length, finds the six-piece giving in to their Basement Tapes urges. On acoustic tracks “Lady on the Water” and “Black River Killer”, singer Eric Earley offers the most convincing Dylan vocals of this young century. And though the latter– a gothic fugitive tale of sin, sheriffs, and stolen horses– is bolstered by an unexpectedly spacey synth line, the former is the sort of sensual, stripped down song that Bob could have performed before he went electric at Newport. The band further pays homage to Mr. Zimmerman with the harmonicas they’ve spackled onto the title track’s folky strummed tale of a wolfman’s transformation and the spare, bittersweet piano hymn “Not Your Lover” (incidentally, the album’s standout track).

Blitzen Trapper’s more cohesive approach has yielded something that is becoming increasingly rare these days: An essential 13-song LP with no filler. There isn’t an extraneous verse, much less a superfluous track here. Though they have more clearly defined their shambolic Americana this time around, they still show great range and unpredictability with their songwriting. The harmony-laden, 40-second pastoral coda to “Love U” and the entirety of the drawling, honeyed pedal-steel showcase “Stolen Shoes & a Rifle” make a convincing argument that the dominant sound of Sub Pop in 2008 owes more to the country-rock poignancy of CSNY than the label’s punk past (see also: Fleet Foxes, Hardly Art’s Moondoggies). The first two and a half minutes of “Love U”, however, are a fuzzy, howling soup of reverberating guitars and jittery drum fills set amidst a molasses-slow dirge. And “Echo/Always On/EZ Con” pulls their organic, earnest sound into strange territory, bleeding a “See The Sky About to Rain”-like piano weeper into a brief, burbling mess of tech sounds that evolve into a funky disco strut. It is those sorts of unexpected flourishes that keep the album crackling with excitement and separate Blitzen Trapper from the rest of the bands that are trying their hands at a similar throwback sound.

It would have been hard to follow Wild Mountain Nation with anything as sprawling, expansive, or diverse, so Blitzen Trapper didn’t try. Instead, they settled down, focused, and managed to create something even better. This imaginative, heartfelt collection is more intimate than its predecessor, reveling less in boundless stylistic freedom and more in the creativity afforded by structure. Blitzen Trapper are no longer talented jacks-of-all-trades, but a master of one, and Furr is proof that this already-great band gets even better as they define themselves more specifically.


Review from NoCountryforNewNashville.
It was Liz Cooper & The Stampede’s turn to put it down. This version of their lineup was a three piece, and I was immediately struck by how full and tight their sound was; chilled out psychedelic work, with tasty elements of jam mixed in for good measure. Liz is a super talented player, and was orchestrating the arrangements in this wonderful laissez faire yet intentional manner that was cool to watch; in complete control, while still keeping the jam fluid. By the last song of their set, they were completely in the zone, until their time came to an end. It was obvious they could have gone for at least another thirty minutes… or more! I look forward to seeing them again in the future, when they can keep the vibes going even longer.


Message from Tom Kitty Oliver:

“I’ve got a new single, ‘Know Everybody You Meet’. You can stream it now on @spotify , at the link below. The song is about discovering the divine within all: ‘God is Love, You are Love, We are Love, Love is Everything’. Special thanks to @matjownz who helped to bring it together, and channeled that ‘Kenny Buttrey’ feel. Also, I’m singing .”

Review from .

This 6th release from Los Angeles’ The Dustbowl Revival finds this band evolving in new directions; shaping and refining their music.  Self-titled, the band that’s gained a reputation for a good-time vibe has expanded its sound to include a soulful, funky groove that exudes deeper emotion and thus taps a more now/modern vibe.  This band has been known for their heady stew of quasi-Beale Street brassiness, mixed with some groove and roots music and yet again, they’ve raised their own bar higher.

“Call Me Now” kicks off the proceedings with a raucous, down-home, groove (yep, right there) filled with on-the-one harmonies, rousing horn charts and a get-down vibe; “If You Could See Me Now” has a sinister soundtrack feel – kind of a spy vibe mixed in with the clever melodic construction – and once again, those horns take center stage, punctuating the verses and lifting up the space between the choruses.  “The Story” has a slightly ’70’s funk feel, although the tempo moves in a 4/4 Motown time – it’s a stomper that’s a definite centerpiece; “Debtors’ Prison” goes in a completely different direction as it’s got a country feel; acoustic based and slower – and another high point and “Gonna Fix You” immediately reminds me of Dexy’s Midnight Runners’ “Let’s Make This Precious”, with its breezy soul feel and uptempo motor.  “Got Over” is another “quieter” piece; acoustic guitar and mandolin surround sweet harmonies and mournful horn interludes and “Leaving Time” is slick, in a New Orleans way – sly and no messing about.

All in all, a fine and solid effort from this ensemble.  I could rhapsodize about the philosophy behind The Dustbowl Revival’s sound and style but this is one of those cases where I don’t need to explain.  Put this album on and let the music do the talking.  I think it’s evident that what I hear in their music, you will too.  Which is more than enough reason to give this a spin.


The Sheepdogs are a rootsy, Americana influenced band from the open plains of Saskatchewan. They’ve been writing playing and touring across the US and Canada since their formation in 2006. In 2011 they became the first unsigned band to be on the cover of Rolling Stone by winning a “Choose the Cover” contest, beating out 15 other bands to clinch the spot. This lead to performances on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, Bonnaroo and Osheaga Festival, showing their signature lead guitar harmonies to a wider audience than ever before. They’ve since had placement in commercials, television series and even at the 2015 IIHF world championship hockey performance with the single “Feeling Good” blasting over the speakers after every goal scored by Canada’s National team.

The band tours constantly and strongly believe in the power of winning over a crowd with a tight, energetic live performance. Their newest release, “Future Nostalgia”, was produced by lead singer and songwriter, Ewan Currie who strove to replicate the band’s original loose and lively sound. It showcases the Sheepdogs’ experience as players, featuring clean, ripping guitar work and a six song medley featuring solo contributions from each member to close the record. It’s a retro, “good-time” record that bridges the gap between garage, rock n’ roll and Americana.