Top new release of 2015: Mike + Ruthy Band, Bright as You Can

This year's Top Spins list is a bit less Michigan-oriented than the past few years. Though Mike + Ruthy are good friends of the Earthwork crew. I'm almost tempted to make them honorary Michiganders! A lot of our Michigan chart-toppers have been touring this year (e.g. Accidentals, Joshua Davis, Billy & Don) while others seemed to be between big projects (Joe Wilson of True Falsettos, for example) or just didn't release a new CD for 2015 (e.g. Jeff Haas, Blake Elliott). Overall, Michigan artists still get loads of attention here in spite of the relative dearth of chart-toppers, and we hope for a boatload of new material to play like crazy in 2016! Meanwhile, enjoy some music that the rest of the world brought us in 2015 . . .

Accidentals in-studio Thurday 12/3 at 2pm!
Yes, all Michigan at the top of the list. We're such homers! On this one more so than the others perhaps, since Savannah, the fiddle player in the Accidentals, is also one of our Late Nite hosts. They played a Louis-Armstrong-like 220 dates last year. They're still quite young. And they have our ...
Click to hear Gregory Alan Isakov Playing Live in studio @ WNMC
Gregory Alan Isakov & Steve Varney do a duo version of The Stable Song, live at WNMC. They performed as part of a full group on Jan 19th at the City Opera House.
WNMC Favorites from 2014: #1. The Accidentals, Bitter Sweet
Yes, all Michigan at the top of the list. We're such homers! On this one more so than the others perhaps, since Savannah, the fiddle player in the Accidentals, is also one of our Late Nite hosts. They played a Louis-Armstrong-like 220 dates last year. They're still quite young. And they have our ...
WNMC Favorites from 2014: #2. The True Falsettos, Cadillacin'
Joe Wilson & Kevin Gill's second full-length effort was even more popular down here than their first, but just missed taking the prize as our most played disc. True Falsettos work the realm of small band swing, western swing and other hot, hybrid style that thrived in the late 1930s and 1940s, an...
WNMC Favorites of 2014: #3. Blake Elliot & the Robinson Affair
Blake Elliot has been rocking the local scene for a couple of years now, and if you haven't seen her yet, you gotta. Like a lot of acts in Traverse City, Blake's range of influences is pretty broad . . . but, she is a singer powerful enough to front a dance band, but also subtle and controlled en...
WNMC Favorites from 2014: #4. John Hammond, Timeless
Like Catherine Russell (#6) Hammond is the product of a great musical legacy: his father was the man who discovered the Count Basie Orchestra, who pushed Benny Goodman to integrate his band, who produced Billie Holliday's earliest (and best) recordings. Who produced Dylan. His father, in short, w...
WNMC Favorites from 2014: #5. Billy Strings & Don Julin, Fiddle Tune X
These two have already attained the status of local legends, so this one wasn't the revelation that their first disc was. We knew what to expect this time! And, no doubt, these two can make some serious music. Don is a seasoned musician, bandleader, arranger, composer, writer and teacher who has ...
WNMC Favorites from 2014: #6. Catherine Russell, Bring It Back
This was a particular favorite of mine (Eric's)--Russell does a great job with a traditional, but personal approach to standards and late-40s R&B, and seems to be able to dig out a forgotten gem or three on every album. Russell's father (Luis) was the leader of Louis Armstrong's big band for many...
WNMC Favorites from 2014: #7 Mac DeMarco, Salad Days
#7 Mac DeMarco, Salad Days (Captured Tracks), our top rock disc of 2014.
". . . therein lies ‘Salad Days’’ triumph. Sweet, soulful little man that he is, Mac knows better than to let his bellyaching get in the way of everyone else's good time — instead, he’s simply dialled down the quirk and wri...