1. Glorietta — Glorietta
Oh my! Another year, another supergroup on the top list. This one’s a little different with it being a supergroup where I wasn’t very familiar with any of the members beforehand outside of Wild Child — but their end results absolutely blew my mind.
2. Loner — Caroline Rose
Great record, great live show. It’s quite possible nobody has ever had as much fun on a record (or a tour) where they completely reinvent themselves.
3. Western Movies — Traveller
Two supergroups in one year. This long-awaited debut (hyped up by 2 Austin shows they played in 2017) didn’t disappoint with a Benji Hughes level of “goofy yet sincere” going on throughout.
4. The Tree of Forgiveness — John Prine
He looks like death on the cover (no offense intended), but the songs tell you he’s still got it and is totally fine if this ends up being his swan song.
5. Esher Demos — The Beatles
Acoustic demos recorded at George Harrison’s house, officially released as part of the White Album 50th anniversary re-issue.
6. Crazy Love — Will Courtney
Discovery of the year. Saw him on the actual 50th Anniversary of the White Album and he covered “Sexy Sadie” for the occasion. This album is great, but he has an older song called “The Days When Bands Could Make Your Cry” with an acoustic version that absolutely makes me cry.
7. Blaze (Original Cast Recording) – Ben Dickey & Friends
I was super late to the Blaze Foley party, but this soundtrack (and the biopic it comes from, and delving deep into the Blaze back catalogue) were big highlights of the musical year.
- Chevrolet Van – The Nude Party
- Soul #5 – Caroline Rose
- The Movie Song – The Record Company
- 19th Amendment – Dolly Parton
- Resignation – Paul Cauthen
- I’m Not Your Mother, I’m Not Your Bitch* – Courtney Barnett
- I Ain’t Got Nothin’** – Willie Nelson
*Song title of the year
**Lyric of the year: “A lonely summer night and memories linger / of when I gave you a ring and you gave me the finger…”
Rhett Miller @ Antone’s – 1/27
Bahamas @Antone’s – 2/17
Cha! (Police tribute band) @ Elysium – 3/3
Caroline Rose @ SXSW (4 shows!)
Blaze Foley movie & Tribute @SXSW – 3/16
Mason Jennings @ Cactus Cafe – 4/20
The Breeders @ Emo’s – 4/21
Rivers Cuomo @ the Troubadour – 5/30
Paul McCartney @ ACL Fest – 10/5
Jackie Venson @ ACL Fest – 10/5
The Record Company @ Scoot Inn – 11/1
Will Courtney @ Sam’s Town Point – 11/9
Hayes Carll & Jack Ingram @ Luckenbach Dance Hall – 11/17
Glorietta @ the Heights Theater – 12/15
Heart & Bones play the songs of Dirty Dancing @ 3Ten – 12/29