Pew Playlist: 3 Albums That Should Be On Your Radar, 9/8/17

Jolie Holland & Samantha Parton – Wildflower Blues

The Be Good Tanyas co-founders Jolie Holland & Samantha Parton gracefully wind their twangy way through rootsy folk and ragtime jazz, to soulful R&B and rollicking rock n’ roll on their new album, Wildflower Blues, out today via their own label, Cinquefoil Records.  Featuring originals and covers of Townes Van Zandt’s “You Are Not Needed Now,” Michael Hurley’s “Jocko’s Lament,” and a rewrite of Dylan’s “Minstrel Boy,” Wildflower Blues is a great way send the summer out in style.

Charlie Parr – Dog

Today, prolific Minnesota-based roots man and master of all things stringed, Charlie Parr, released Dog, his most personal album yet via Red House Records. Parr, who has spent years working with the homeless population in his northern Minnesota stomping grounds, confronts life’s great questions, emotional issues, and mental health. Brimming with his signature countrified sonic style, Dog is literal music to the ears and food for the soul. Parr also might have imparted some of the best wisdom ever when explaining the origin of the album’s title track; “I have a dog, her name is Ruby but I call her Ruben, and we go for these long, crazy, chaotic walks,” said Parr of the tune’s inspiration. “Because I decided a long time ago that I get along really well with this dog, and I was taking her for walks, and she wanted to go this way, and I wanted to go that way. And then I thought, why are we going to go this way and not that way? Maybe I should be the one getting walked. Maybe I’ll learn something. So I follow the dog.” There you have it.

Sean McConnell – Undone

Nashville singer-songwriter Sean McConnell has released an acoustic version of his acclaimed self-titled debut titled Undone today via Rounder Records, which includes one new song, a duet with MCP she-ro Lori McKenna titled “Nothing on You.” “I’ve just always known I wanted to have an acoustic version of these songs ready for people to hear,” he says of his reasons for making the stripped down record. “It’s the kind of collection that really calls for it. I could hear it in my head the whole time, that this record had a second life in a different soundscape.” It’s the sound of freedom, and we dig it the most.

Susan Hubbard

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