Fred’s Country Fried Rock

Alestorm, Bob Wayne, Alice Cooper, Hellbound Glory + Others: Fred Phillips’ Best Metal, Country and Hard Rock of 2017

Alestorm, Bob Wayne, Alice Cooper, Hellbound Glory + Others: Fred Phillips’ Best Metal, Country and Hard Rock of 2017

It was, honestly, a pretty lousy year for music. This list of Best Metal, Country and Hard Rock of 2017 highlights five exceptions, and some key honorable mentions.

Fred Phillips’ Best Country and Southern Rock of 2016: Jackson Taylor, Hank Jr., Whiskey Myers

Fred Phillips’ Best Country and Southern Rock of 2016: Jackson Taylor, Hank Jr., Whiskey Myers

A very topical album, a group of overlooked Southern rockers and the return of a country legend highlight this Best Country and Southern Rock of 2016 list.

Hank Williams Jr. – It’s About Time (2016)

Hank Williams Jr. – It’s About Time (2016)

This won’t compete with those classic late-1970s and early-1980s records, but it does seem that Hank Williams Jr. has found his way again. It’s about time.

Jackson Taylor and the Sinners – Cantina del Diablo (2015)

Jackson Taylor and the Sinners – Cantina del Diablo (2015)

Jackson Taylor’s ‘Cantina del Diablo’ reminds us that underneath the fun-loving, boozy persona we often see, there’s a damned good songwriter.

Whiskey Myers – Early Morning Shakes (2014)

Whiskey Myers boasts a classic Southern rock sound, but they also draw from modern rock, country and the Red Dirt scene.

Blackberry Smoke, “Rock ‘n’ Roll Again” (2014): One Track Mind

Blackberry Smoke, “Rock ‘n’ Roll Again” (2014): One Track Mind

With “Rock ‘n’ Roll Again,” Blackberry Smoke got my toes tapping. There’s not much more you can ask for from this type of song.

One Track Mind: Shooter Jennings, “4th of July” from Put the O Back in Country (2005)

One Track Mind: Shooter Jennings, “4th of July” from Put the O Back in Country (2005)

I still can’t figure out why this wasn’t a huge summer hit.

Fred Phillips’ Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Southern Rock and Country): Bob Wayne, Sturgill Simpson, Mat D, Jackson Taylor, Willie Nelson

Fred Phillips’ Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Southern Rock and Country): Bob Wayne, Sturgill Simpson, Mat D, Jackson Taylor, Willie Nelson

Sturgill Simpson? The genuine article. Bob Wayne? Back with his best ever.

Sturgill Simpson – Metamodern Sounds in Country Music (2014)

Sturgill Simpson – Metamodern Sounds in Country Music (2014)

There might not be a more pure and genuine underground country artist.

Hellbound Glory – LV (2014)

This long-awaited EP finds Leroy Virgil seemingly growing up. Is that a good thing?

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