Lucinda Williams starts new release season

As the calendar turns to March, it is time to take a look at some upcoming new music releases we will be listening to this spring and possibly summer.

In fact, on Tuesday, March 1, Lucinda Williams will release “Blessed,” her ninth album since 1979’s “Ramblin” and her seventh since 1988’s “Lucinda Williams,” which is unofficially her debut.

I remember that record well because it was released during our first year in business and is a really good record. Williams has since become a well-respected singer/songwriter and is, in my opinion, one of the very best out there.

From what I have heard of “Blessed” it could be one of Williams’ best albums because it is more rounded and balanced than her last two or three records and more like “Sweet Old World” in style.

Also coming Tuesday is “Big Head Blues Club 100 Years of Robert Johnson” featuring Colorado’s own Big Head Todd and the Monsters as they pay tribute to blues legend Robert Johnson for his 100th birthday.

Joining the band are such greats as BB King, Hubert Sumlin, David “Honeyboy” Edwards and Charlie Musselwhite as they reinterpret Johnson’s songs with a smooth, soulful, funky jazz style that I haven’t heard before when artists inevitably cover Johnson.

I really like the sound of this CD and am hopeful it will bring Big Head Todd and the Monsters some of the national recognition the band deserves.

Buddy Miller’s newest project is called “Majestic Silver Strings.” Miller, former lead guitar player for Emmylou Harris Spyboy, is joined here by three other acclaimed guitarists — Bill Frisell, Greg Leisz and Mark Ribot — giving a unique spin to some classic country tunes such as “Cattle Call,” “Dang Me” and “Bury Me Not on the Lone Prairie.” Providing vocals are Emmylou Harris, Patty Griffin, Shaun Colvin, Lee Ann Womack, Chocolate Genius and Miller’s wife and recording partner Julie Miller.

New releases coming March 8 include R.E.M.‘s much anticipated “Collapse Into Now,” Bruce Cockburn’s “Small Source Of Comfort,” Avril Lavigne’s “Goodbye Lullaby” and Dr. John with “Zoo Zoo Soire.”

Reissues include Simon and Garfunkel’s “Bridge Over Troubled Water,” Tommy Bolin’s classic “Teaser” with bonus tracks, a two-CD set of Traffic’s classic “John Barleycorn Must Die” and Neil Diamond with “The Bang Years 1966–1968” a two-CD set featuring his 23 original mono recordings and, in my opinion, the bulk of his best work.

On April 19, The Steve Miller Band will release a new album, “Let Your Hair Down.” Significant to me is that after an 18-year hiatus from recording, this is Miller’s second release in less than a year.

On June 15, 2010, Miller released “Bingo” an album of mostly blues covers. In addition to the new album release, a spring tour also will kick off on April 19 with a show in Charleston, S.C., with special guest, Gregg Allman, who will also appear at other shows following the April 19 performance.

Also on April 19, Rolling Stone will release “The Rolling Stone Singles 1971–2006,” a 173-track box set featuring 45 singles from the band along with 80 previously unreleased rarities, re-mixes and live versions of the tracks.

It comes in a pink box with the band’s trademark tongue logo and includes a 32-page hardback book packed with memorabilia, period photos and features an exclusive new interview with Bill Wyman, the band’s former bassist.

Stay tuned for more new release information as well as special releases coming for Record Store Day.

Rock Cesario owns Triple Play Records, 530 Main St., and hosts “Acoustic Sunday” from 9 a.m. to noon Sunday on Drive 105.3 FM. E-mail him at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


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