This may have been the most difficult year that I have ever tried to rank my ten favorite albums. There wasn’t a record really–other than perhaps my favorite–that was superior to everything else recorded this year, but there were 100 that were great. I could have easily stretched this into something much longer, but I think I’ve kept at this concise list for a decade or so and there’s no reason to deviate now. It was a great year for pop music, and I didn’t even include the shockingly fabulous Harry Styles debut.
Former Birmingham radio station 107.7 The X was responsible for breaking a lot of acts in the 90s and early 2000s; folks like John Mayer and Train. And matchbox twenty, a band that went on to arena rock success, first found its audience when Program Director Dave Rossi decided to play a cut from the debut, Yourself or Someone Like You, that was not being promoted as the single.
That album would went platinum 12 times. Though lead vocalist Rob Thomas has also gone on to a successful solo career, the band reconvenes as time permits. They’ve released three records since, the most recent, North, in 2012.
Guitarist Paul Doucette named the band. He doesn’t really have an explanation for where it came from, but it was his idea that stuck. Ahead of their return to the Magic City, Doucette chats about Rossi’s decision that propelled the band to superstardom and what to expect of the band’s future. Continue reading
Concerts of the Year 2016
These were, in my humble opinion, the ten best concerts that I saw this year in America. Only one of them was in Birmingham. I’m sorry.
Albums of the Year: 2016
Making this list this year was simultaneously the most difficult it has ever been and the easiest. Ann Powers navigated this better than anyone that I saw, making her list the Top Ten (Beyond the Obvious). In that post, she says:
“The Knowles sisters, David Bowie and Frank Ocean made the best albums of 2016, according to virtually every list; only a handful of others deserve Top 10 status at all. The critical consensus is beginning to feel a bit suffocating; what about the hundreds, nay thousands, of other artists who released music this year to at least some acclaim?”
Write Me a Birmingham
I’m really happy to share that work on book two begins today. This time, I’m going to share the history of Birmingham music.
Best of 2015: Concerts
This may have been the toughest year that I have ever tried to narrow this list down to ten. So, yeah, I took some creative liberties and I added a few special mentions that I felt were noteworthy. There are no geographical boundaries to this list – these are simply the best shows that I saw in 2015.
Best of 2015: Records (That Have No Tie to Alabama)
I split this list up this year because Alabama had a special year in music, and Alabama music was an important part of my year. So here are the ten-ish records that I thought were the best of 2015 that had no connection to the state of Alabama.