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XPN Fest Recap: The War on Drugs and Sturgill Simpson deliver guitar jams of different sorts at BB&T

The War on Drugs | photo by Ashley Gellman for WXPN | agellmanphotos.com

While the night one headliners at #XPNFest were cerebral, experimental and beat-oriented, night two shifted the focus to a rock festival classic: the guitar.

Adam Granduciel of The War on Drugs is a master of instrumental tone and texture, of soundscaping — as well as atmospheric lead licks that transport the band and the crowd to the stratosphere. Sturgill Simpson is more down and dirty, an adherent of country / blues riff rock tradition, but played louder and faster than most of his peers (and heroes). Together, they treated the BB&T Pavilion crowd to expansive jams, but of two very different sorts.

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Watch #XPNFest headliner Sturgill Simpson perform with Chris Stapleton on SNL

Sturgill Simpson and Chris Stapleton | still from video

Call it a meeting of metamodern country greats. Last night on Saturday Night Live, Nashville’s Chris Stapleton was the musical guest, in support of last year’s two-volume From A Room project. As a surprise for fans, Stapleton’s lead guitarist was his Kentucky neighbor Sturgill Simpson, who co-headlines this year’s Saturday night concert at the XPoNential Music Festival alongside The War on Drugs. Continue reading →

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Just Announced: Sturgill Simpson will play The Fillmore in October

Sturgill Simpson | Photo by Reto Sterchi
Sturgill Simpson | Photo by Reto Sterchi | courtesy of the artist

On the heels of his acclaimed 2016 LP A Sailor’s Guide to Earth, Kentucky singer-songwriter Sturgill Simpson just announced a U.S. tour that brings him to Philadelphia on October 7th to headline The Fillmore. Tickets to the show go on sale this Friday, May 20th at 10 a.m., more information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →

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Sturgill Simpson rearranges the nightmare on A Sailor’s Guide To Earth

Sturgill Simpson | Photo by Reto Sterchi
Sturgill Simpson | Photo by Reto Sterchi

An outlaw’s work is never done: Sturgill Simpson‘s latest album, A Sailor’s Guide To Earth, is now streaming on First Listen via NPR Music.

On his last release, Metamodern Sounds In Country Music, Simpson challenged the preconceived notion of establishment Nashville by giving the world a record of old-school country filtered through a lens of psychedelia and back-breaking introspective folk music.

With this new record, Simpson continues to break down genre walls by teaming up with Sharon Jones’ horn squad The Dap Kings to combine his modernist country with 60’s soul and rock & roll. Continue reading →

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Sturgill Simpson releases video for “Brace For Impact (Live A Little)” from upcoming A Sailor’s Guide To Earth

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Sturgill Simpson | Photo by Joe Del Tufo | joedeltufo.com

Country mind-eraser Sturgill Simpson continues to stun with his old-school outlaw rock and roll, from 2014’s terrific Metamodern Sounds In Country Music to contributing the song “Sugar Daddy” to HBO’s Vinyl. His new album A Sailor’s Guide To Earth is out this April, and this week he shared the video for it’s lead single “Brace For Impact (Live A Little).” Continue reading →

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Listen to a new song by Sturgill Simpson, “Brace For Impact (Live A Little)”

Sturgill Simpson | Photo by Reto Sterchi
Sturgill Simpson | Photo by Reto Sterchi

Singer and songwriter Sturgill Simpson recently announced the release of the followup to his critically acclaimed 2014 album Metamodern Sounds in Country Music. The new album, A Sailor’s Guide To Earth, is out April 15th on Atlantic.

The Americana Music Award winning Simpson self-produced the album, recorded mostly at the Butcher Shoppe in Nashville. It features Simpson’s touring band, and additional contributions from Dan Dugmore on steel guitar, the Dap-Kings, and others.

Sailor’s Guide was written — beginning to end — as a letter to his first child, born during the summer of 2014 and features eight original songs as well as a cover of Nirvana’s “In Bloom.” Continue reading →