If anyone in music today has lived a country or roots music lifestyle it is Sturgill Simpson. Born in the South (Kentucky) his parents worked in the coal mines and as police officers. He also, as a younger man, did a stint in the Navy before working for the railroad and a shipping company. Regular blue collar types. His music has that working class, don’t mind getting my hands dirty feel to it. Authentic.
After leaving his bluegrass group he self-released a solo album, High Top Mountain, in 2013, Simpson signed with a British independent label called Loose. They then released High Top Mountain themselves in 2014. The album is named after a cemetery in which his family is buried. Critics compared his sound to that of the legendary Waylon Jennings while others thought it was more like Merle Haggard. He would have been at home on Country radio during the 70s when there were plenty of thoughtful lyricists whose songs had a conversational style. Whatever you classify it as there was no denying its lush sound that features a nice mix of sad ballads and upbeat romps.
His sophomore album, Metamodern Sounds in Country Music, followed in 2014 and his third, A Sailor’s Guide to Earth, was released earlier this year. In between the two his profile was elevated when he was asked to pen and record the theme song for the HBO television series Vinyl.
He has toured plenty whether solo or opening for the likes of the Zac Brown Band, Dwight Yoakam, Merle Haggard, and Willie Nelson.
-Date: August 4, 2016
-Venue: Corona Theatre
-Ticket Purchase: www.evenko.ca
-Ticket Price: $48.50 (plus handling charges)
-Show Time: 8:00 p.m. (Doors @ 7:00 p.m.)