My Postcard2 Top 20 for 2008   Leave a comment

Postcard2 is a list serve that is focused around (mostly) roots music and its various off-shoots. Each year members submit their Top 20 releases of the year. The submissions can be interesting, and can lead to further exporation of artists and albums previously missed. for more information. Anyhow, here is what I submitted, with three comments. One, I missed Darrell Scott’s Modern Hymns. Not sure how, but I did. It would have most likely pushed the Hubbard disc out of the top 20. Second, I hadn’t heard either the Kasey Chambers & Shane Nicholson album nor the Hank Williams unreleased radio show recordings prior to compiling the list. Not sure if Rattlin’ Bones would have made it to the Twenty, but Hank would have made the reissues list. Additionally, Maria Dunn’s album arrived too late to be considered. Again, quite likely it would have made the list; it is an excellent example of the living Canadian folk tradition. Finally, as discussed elsewhere, Carlene Carter’s Stronger is a very fine album, but didn’t make my top 20. Instead, I mention it on the reissues as it was originally issued as a fan club disc a couple years ago. Anyhow…here it is:


Beyond Fred Eaglesmith’s Tinderbox, few of the albums I shortlisted and then finally listed stood-out ‘head and shoulders’ above the rest.

Actually, I had initially believed 2008 was a weak year for the kind of music I like, simply because little separated itself from the pack. Once I started working at it, I discovered there was a lot of music I liked and enjoyed, but the new releases were overshadowed by the volume of catalogue- and in some cases deep catalogue- music I’ve been listening to (Genesis’s Foxtrot, anyone?)

This is a result, I think, of purchasing a lot of music- some I still haven’t got to- from a chain going bankrupt this fall, finding a bunch of $1 CDs I could trade in for three and four times at the local shop for mega-discounted ‘my kind of music’- You’re Never Alone With A Schizophrenic for $4, Martin Sexton Wonder Bar for 6, and various Midnight Oil’s for $3…

In no particular order, beyond Fred being #1…

Fred Eaglesmith- Tinderbox

The Steeldrivers- The Steeldrivers

The Earl Brothers- Moonshine

Kathy Mattea- Coal

Mark Erelli- Delivered

Melonie Cannon- And the Wheels Turn

Blue Moon Rising- One Lonely Shadow

Chip Taylor- New Songs of Freedom

Crooked Still- Still Crooked

Charlie Haden- Rambling Boy

Lucinda Williams- Little Honey

Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper- Leavin’ Town

Jay Clark- I’m Confused

Justin Townes Earle- The Good Life
Brad Paisley- Play

Eliza Gilkyson- Beautiful World

Ray Wylie Hubbard- Snake Farm

Kimmie Rhodes- Walls Fall Down
Kathleen Edwards- Asking for Flowers

Jimmy Gaudreau and Moondi Klein- 2:10 Train


 Subject to change within twenty minutes

 Reissues/compilations, etc

The Wire- …And All the Things Matter

Nick Lowe- Jesus of Cool

VA- Ten Years of European World of Bluegrass

Larry Sparks- Bound to Ride

Ralph Stanley- Old-Time Pickin

Katrina Leskanich- Walking on Sunshine

Carlene Carter- Stronger

Bruce Robison- His Greatest Hits

Jason Ringenberg- Best Tracks and Side Tracks

James King- Gardens in the Sky

And the whole damn Creedence reissue set- How did I ever miss CCR before? What a rhythm section! Much more than the FM singles band I always took them for.

And finally, Ali Thomson’s digital reissue of “Take A Little Rhythm”!


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