Each week the Wide Open Country staff rounds up our favorite newly released country and Americana songs. Here are five new songs we can't stop listening to this week.
"Finish What We Started," The Zac Brown Band Featuring Brandi Carlile
The Zac Brown Band have been internet whipping boys lately because of new album The Owl's more bizarre selections, but don't let that distract from this gorgeous duet with Brandi Carlile. It's a less-is-more pop ballad that shows off both singers' undeniable vocal talents. Carlile's team redeem the whole album, between this song and her twin bandmates Phil and Tim Hanseroth's role in writing an even better song: "Leaving Love Behind."
"Put It Off Until Tomorrow," Crystal Gayle Featuring Loretta Lynn and Peggy Sue
Crystal Gayle quietly released a new album earlier this month featuring covers of some of her favorite songs. One of which, the often-covered Dolly Parton and Bill Owens song "Put It Off Until Tomorrow," teams Gayle with the other Webb sisters to leave Butcher Hollow for success in Nashville: Loretta Lynn and Peggy Sue. Nothing beats sibling harmonies or the involvement of Lynn on anyone's album.
"Teenage Dirtbag," Ruston Kelly
For many of today's country and Americana artists, emo music shared space on mix CDs right alongside country classics. It makes sense, if you think about it -- the confessional lyrics of bands like Dashboard Confessional and Jimmy Eat World aren't too far removed from the heart-on-your-sleeve barroom weepers of country's past and present. Ruston Kelly perfectly blends the two genres on Dirt Emo Vol. 1 (out Oct. 11 on Rounder Records). The album features covers of Dashboard Confessional's "Screaming Infidelities" (featuring the band's lead singer Chris Chris Carrabba) as well as renditions of The Carter Family's ""Weeping Willow" and Taylor Swift's "All Too Well." Last week, Kelly released a live version of his cover of rock band Wheatus' 2000 song "Teenage Dirtbag." In Kelly's hands, the song is transformed into a steel-laden tune for country fans who still rock their old Iron Maiden t-shirts.
"Things A Man Oughta Know," Lainey Wilson
Louisiana native Lainey Wilson moved to Nashville in a bumper-pull camper trailer, which she lived in for three years while rising to the upper ranks of the Music City songwriting heap with grit and raw talent. She brings that scrappy attitude to her latest Jay Joyce-produced EP Redneck Hollywood. To those new to Wilson, it's a brilliant introduction to her self-described brand of "bell bottom country." Check out "Things A Man Oughta Know," which Wilson penned with Jonathan Singleton and Jason Nix, an unflinching letter to a man who let a good thing go.
"Oh, Sister," Logan Ledger (feat. Courtney Marie Andrews)
Logan Ledger's T Bone Burnett-produced forthcoming EP I Don't Dream Anymore (out Oct. 4 via Rounder Records) is one of the most buzzed-about country releases this year. Recently, Ledger teased the upcoming the EP with a spellbinding cover of Bob Dylan's "Oh, Sister," featuring Courtney Marie Andrews acting as the Emmylou Harris to Ledger's Dylan, a cut from the icon's 1976 album Desire.