Court Yard Hounds Return With ‘Amelita’

Screen Shot 2013-07-20 at 4.04.15 AMThe future of the Dixie Chicks isn’t looking so bright, but Court Yard Hounds is certainly filling the void. The duo, comprised of Chicks co-founders Martie Maguire and Emily Robison, released its sophomore album, Amelita, this week. The collection not only shows a happier side of the Texas sisters, but also solidifies them as a band, and not just a side project.

While the Hounds’ 2010 self-titled debut was largely inspired by Robison’s divorce from country crooner Charlie Robison, Amelita is the product of more diverse songwriting inspiration. “I’ve been freed of all of those time-heals-everything kind of things,” says Robison. “Now, I’ve opened up to other ideas and ways of looking at life and the world. [Amelita is] not only a more hopeful album, but it’s more fun.”

The Texas-bred siblings wrote or co-wrote most songs on the new album and describe it as country meets adult alternative, meets adult contemporary. While their more organic sound is certainly a departure from the Dixie Chicks, an old memory from the superstar trio’s heyday is what inspired the title track, which is about underage prostitution.

“We were shooting the video [for the Chicks’ “Long Time Gone”] across from basically what was a brothel,” Maguire explains to CultureMap Austin. “Women were standing out in the doorways, and we were so naïve and we were going, ‘Why do all these women have their doors open?’”

Maguire, who takes over lead vocals from her little sister on two of the album’s 11 tracks, insists the Hounds’ sophomore disc reflects a stronger backbone. Starting over again after a multi-platinum-selling, Grammy-sweeping run as the Dixie Chicks was somewhat daunting, as they had to prove themselves again. But in the three years between Hounds albums, their musical confidence has skyrocketed.

“We’ve approached it differently because we felt like okay, we are a band,” says the fiddle player. “We aren’t just two ex-Dixie Chicks anymore, we’re a band and we like our sound and we’re going to continue to do this and hopefully get better at it, and share something new this time around.”

As for the Chicks, neither Maguire nor Robison will come right out and say they’re done, but they do warn to not hold your breath for new Dixie Chicks music anytime soon. Lead singer Natalie Maines released her own solo project, Mother, earlier this year and is busy touring in support of the project. And the Court Yard Hounds are quite content concentrating on their own venture – a musical refreshment after being with the Chicks since 1989.

Listen for Court Yard Hounds on our Americana station here. 

Enjoy New Countdowns on Slacker Radio

We know you love countdowns and Slacker has just launched some new countdowns we are sure you will enjoy. Take a look!

Screen Shot 2013-07-16 at 5.59.29 PMThe Twitter Top 50
Welcome to the Twitter Top 50 on Slacker. This station is based on the top 50 songs on the “Superstars” chart, representing the most tweeted-about and shared songs from today’s biggest artists on Twitter. This countdown is updated every Wednesday, so check back every week to hear the hottest music in social discovery.


EAGLES-MUSIC-GUIDE-472x472The Eagles Top 33
The Eagles have finally made their entire catalogue available for streaming, and to celebrate, Slacker has created a station that is filled with the most-loved Eagles songs, as determined by our exclusive E.Q. methodology that measures how often our listeners play, “heart,” and share songs. This is Eagles Top 33: the biggest songs by one of the world’s most beloved bands, as chosen by you!


66-METALmusicguide-472x47266 Greatest Metal Songs of all time
First, your Slacker curators conspired and argued over the 66 Greatest Metal Songs of all time. Then, we asked Metal God Dave Mustaine to host this countdown, which he graciously agreed to. Finally, we asked bands like Korn, Device, Sick Puppies, and Steel Panther to weigh in with their commentary. Put it all together and you’ve got an unholy countdown of 66 songs that are Louder Than Hell.



I Am The DJ Featuring Sara Bareilles

BAREILLES-472x472Slacker sat down with singer/songwriter Sara Bareilles and worked with her to create a radio station of her favorite music.

On her featured I Am The DJ station, you’ll hear the stories about artists and songs that inspired her to become the star she is today, from Tom Waits and Animal Collective to Fiona Apple and Justin Timberlake.

Check out this exclusive look into the musical soul of Sara Bareilles—it’s I Am The DJ on Slacker.

Luke Bryan ‘Tailgates’ in Nashville

When it comes to his whirlwind success, Luke Bryan insists it takes a village. The country music superstar was celebrated at a party Wednesday (July 10) in Nashville, where Slacker joined about 200 music industry colleagues in raising a glass to the double platinum sales status of Bryan’s Tailgates and Tanlines album. Photo by Alan PoiznerThe humble singer used his time in the spotlight to thank everyone from his road crew and co-writers to the head of Universal Music Group Nashville, Mike Dungan (pictured left with Bryan), whom he called a “whiskey drinkin’, partyin’, runnin’ the biggest label in the world kind of guy.”

Tailgates and Tanlines was the eighth biggest-selling album of any genre in 2012 and spawned three No. 1 hits. It was nominated for Album of the Year at both the Country Music Association Awards and Academy of Country Music Awards. Yet selling two million copies of the project is a feat Bryan admits he can’t really grasp.

“I remember when we were celebrating one million. I never imagined getting to two million,” he said from the stage. “It takes so many people to make this happen. Thanks to everyone who helped me do what I’ve always dreamed of. So many people in this room have watched me go from somebody who was so ignorant and naïve to somebody that’s … well, maybe not naïve but there’s still a lot of ignorance. [laughs]”

And a lot of days away from home. Bryan is currently on his sold-out Dirt Road Diaries tour and credits wife Caroline with holding down the fort in Nashville, chasing after their two sons, Bo (5) and Tate (2).

“I want to thank my wife for letting me be on the road and shake my butt,” laughed the “Country Girl (Shake It for Me)” singer. “Caroline busts her butt with the boys and is the perfect wife to let me have this career. We were down in Grayton Beach (Florida) last night, and we had the boys on the bus … Tate was sleeping in the bottom bunk and woke up about what, three times?”

“About 30 times,” Caroline corrected him from the audience.

“Thirty? Well, I was up for two of them,” the singer joked in response, then continuing his little family story with something that might make his youngest child blush in a few years. Bryan was excited to report that Tate “poo pooed on the potty” for the first time last week – another feat to which he credits the tireless parenting of his better half.

Bryan will have very little downtime between his current tour and promotion of his next album. Crash My Party is set to hit stores Aug. 13, and we’re betting it will be another two million-seller. Its title track, which you can hear on our New Country First station, is already No. 4 on the Slacker EQ chart.

New Events Just Added to the Slacker Tour!

Slacker HomepageThe Slacker Tour is ramping up as we are about halfway through summer festival season.  We just announced a slew of new concerts and festivals we are headed to so make sure to take a look at the updated calendar of events.

You can also stay in the loop on all event news and updates on the Slacker Tour page here.

From Forecastle Festival in Kentucky to Culture Collide in Los Angeles  – you will be able to spot  the Slacker Tour bus all across the country. In case you haven’t seen it, the Slacker Tour bus is a pretty fun place to hang out. Take a look:

[SlideDeck2 id=665]

We always have a lot going on at the bus including:

  • Chances to win big prizes–including an Epiphone guitar
  • Live performances (depending on the show).
  • Cell phone charging stations
  • Demos to check out the new Slacker apps
  • Chances to win a free year of Slacker Premium

and much much more! So check out the new events we have just announced and hopefully we will see you on the road this summer.





New Slacker EQ Charts for America’s Birthday

play-1Welcome to the 4th of July version of the Slacker EQ chart, which you can check out here.  Insert your own, clever patriotic verbiage here…while we just get to the business at hand.

For starters, take one quick glance at the Country chart, and you’ll see Little Big Town making the leap of the week with “Your Side of the Bed.” The song is just getting started in the broadcast world, but our rabid country fans are already giving it heavy a thumbs up. This one will contend for #1 someday soon.

As long as we’re making predictions, allow us to point out that Philip Philips’ “Gone, Gone, Gone” is now hanging out in our Pop Top 10. Again we have the case of a song that is pulling in EQ scores that exceed its progress in the non-Slacker world. Since EQ is powered by actual audience engagement rather sales or spins, we’re thinking this song is destined for big-ish things.

And on the Electronic front, this is what our in-house expert, Party Ben, thinks you should know: “Look out for Sebastian Ingrosso ‘Reload.’ This is a member of the gargantuan and recently disbanded Swedish House Mafia making a track that aims right at the ‘Save the World’/’Don’t You Worry Child’ type of epic festival jam. Oh yeah and Bastille ‘Pompeii,’ a recent Slacker Song Stuck in My Head feature, is perhaps destined for some out-of-left-field success (already a top 5 hit around Europe).”

Make sure to also check out our Slacker EQ Top 40 station, updated every week based on our EQ scores. Not sure what the EQ score is? Read more here or check out our nifty infographic here.

Happy 4th!

The Best American Divas of All Time

Screen Shot 2013-07-01 at 6.08.06 PMTo celebrate the 4th of July, we are presenting a patriotic, one-of-kind special that salutes the game-changing ladies of American pop. Hosted by Ciara, who’s new self-titled album drops on July 9th, 33 Greatest All American Divas is a countdown of the greatest divas from past and present.

What does it take to be one of the best American Divas? Take a look at five of the top ladies and see what makes them stand out as true divas and American icons.

Aretha Franklin
Aside from the massive hits spanning over three decades, 20 Grammy awards, and being the first female artist to enter the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1981- there is that distinctive and timeless voice that puts Aretha at the top of the list. With classics such as “Respect” and “Chain of Fools” loved by the young and old alike, the “Queen of Soul” is unquestionably the Queen American Diva.

barbra-streisand-7Barbara Streisand
Barbara Streisand isn’t just a pop diva. “Babs” is a singer, songwriter, author, actress, writer, film producer and director – and she happens to be great at doing it all. Streisand holds the record for the most top-ten albums of any female recording artist – a total of 32 since 1963. She has won two Academy Awards, eight Grammy Awards, five Emmy Awards including one Daytime Emmy, a Special Tony Award, an American Film Institute award, a Kennedy Center Honors award, a Peabody Award, and is one of the few entertainers (less than 20) who have won an Oscar, Emmy, Grammy, and Tony Award – dubbed the EGOT.

It takes a real diva to dance in public wearing a coned bra and yet still be admired as one of the top businesswoman in the music industry – and Madonna pulls it off with chutzpah. Guinness Book of World Records considers Madonna the most successful female artist of all time – but we don’t need a book to tell us that. Madonna needs no explanation for being one of the greatest All American Divas. She is a true American icon like no other in pop music.

Mariah Carey
Let’s work out some numbers here. Mariah has more #1 pop hits in the US than anyone but the Beatles. Her voice can cover an unbelievable five octaves. She has won five Grammy awards and, after a few years in the early 2000s where her career faltered, she came back with “We Belong Together,” which went on to spend 14 weeks at #1 making it one of the biggest pop singles of all time. Not bad Mariah… not bad at all.

Whitney+Houston+Whitney+HQ+2Whitney Houston
The late great Whitney Houston was a true force of nature- with a flawless voice and staggering beauty that made her a sensation all over the globe. Her career saw six studio albums, three movie soundtracks, one holiday album and a greatest hits collection- all of which have sold over 200 million records worldwide. She is also in the Guinness Book of World Records for being the most awarded female act of all time. This was a diva that sadly departed too soon.





They are back! New Music from Franz Ferdinand

Franz_Ferdinand_Launch__Photo_credit_Andy_Knowles_01-472x472Scotland’s Franz Ferdinand is back with their first new album since 2009.  “Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action” has been in the works since 2010, and is finally slated for release. The LP, which is the follow-up to their 2009 effort ‘Tonight’, will be released on August 26 and was recorded in frontman Alex Kapranos’ Scottish studio and guitarist Nick McCarthy’s Studios in London.

The album is set to have  number of collaborations but no names have been mentioned. However it has been reported that one such collaboration is Roxanne Clifford of Veronica Falls as a guest vocalist.

You can hear their new tracks “Right Action” and “Love Illumination” now on Slacker’s New Alternative First!

Check out the trailer and tracklisting for “Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action” below.




‘Right Action’
‘Evil Eye’
‘Love Illumination’
‘Stand On The Horizon’
‘Fresh Strawberries’
‘Treason! Animals’
‘The Universe Expanded’
‘Brief Encounters’
‘Goodbye Lovers & Friends’

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