The Joup Friday Album: “Traveller” — Chris Stapleton

TravellerWhen I was tagged for the Joup Friday Album, I had already been thinking for weeks that it was time to write about Chris Stapleton’s album, “Traveller.” This album won’t get out of my head, and I realize now why that is: It hasn’t been since U2’s “The Joshua Tree” that an album has had such a profound and personal impact on my life.

On Silver Wings: Remembering Merle Haggard

MerleIt was cold, windy and gray the day that I heard Merle Haggard died — in other words, a typical Midwestern spring day. It seems right, though, given the news.

The Joup Friday Album: Willie Nelson – Stardust

Willie-Nelson-StardustIn 1978, there was no bigger band than the Bee Gees. The Brothers Gibb dominated the charts with disco hits such as “Stayin’ Alive” and “Night Fever,” and also contributed amazing songs such as “How Deep Is Your Love,” while Brother Andy charted with “(Love Is) Thicker Than Water” and “Shadow Dancing.” It was also the year that saw John Travolta’s astronomical rise to stardom with lead roles in “Saturday Night Fever” and “Grease,” which spawned the hit single “You’re the One that I Want.” Even the Stones had a hard time catching up to the cultural zeitgeist; “Miss You,” their only real hit in ’78, spent just one week at the top of the Billboard heap.

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