In July of 2007, a wonderful thing happened to me. I was already a hard-core country music fan by then. I was a steadfast reader of the CMT blog and their news section. I also tried to keep up with country music through various google alerts – and still do. But one day while searching for some particular tidbit of information, I stumbled upon the Granddaddy of Country Blogs, The 9513. I found an early mailbag, and after reading, I decided to poke around the site. I found intelligent reviews and well-thought editorials, all crawling with comments from just the kind of country fans I had been looking to interact with. (I still love the CMT blog, but the regulars there are a bit untamed.) From my new discovery, and mostly thanks to the daily news roundups, I began exploring the wealth of country music journalism all over the web, all suited to my own tastes, and even beyond that. I was soon reading Country Universe, the Photocrap blog (now Farce the Music), and even found the Country California site before John Maglite sold it to C.M. Wilcox, who took the humor to another level. There was also many more, and you can find them on this site’s blogroll.
There was something for everybody already by then, but I still jumped right in with my own comments. It wasn’t long until I was bitten by the blogging bug, and the idea struck me for this site. Knowing I couldn’t do it on my own, I set out to scoop up as many of the great writers as I could, and get them on my side, before the other blogs wanted them. We started in December of 2008, with a simple idea: to write about the music we loved. It became evident that mainstream country wasn’t going to accomodate us on a daily basis, so we sat out to write about the rich history of country music, alongside the latest releases. And by March of this year, My Kind of Country was a genuine country music blog property, thanks in no small part to the big blogs lending us their readers. Thanks again, you guys. But enough about us.
We’ve all been very fortunate this year to be able to read a rich tapestry of entries from countless writers in the country blogosphere. We’ve read scathing reviews and glowing ones, we’ve listened to candid and revealing interviews, and of course the oft-needed bitching and moaning to get things back the way we want them. Country blogging has run the gamut this year and I’m so very proud to have been a small part of it. I also look forward to what the new year will bring, as online literature continues to grow, and we drag country music, kicking and screaming, into the 21st century. Here’s to you, the pioneers of country blogging. You are my heroes.
When I started thinking about reviving this post – an idea from the mind of C.M. Wilcox – I knew, like everything else in life, that I’d need the help of my friends to compile a truly worthy list. So I sent out an email to every country blogger in my address book asking them their favorite blog posts of the year. The consensus seemed to run towards interviews as personal favorites, with country blogging heavyweights Brady Vercher, Leeann Ward, and Blake Boldt all citing various interviews as the best articles of the year. Here’s a few of the choice picks for best country blog posts of the year. These are just what we came up with as a preliminary list. With your help, we’d like to create a complete list of the 50 greatest posts from the past 12 months. So be sure to jump in the comments section and tell us your picks so we can add them to the final ballot.
Charlie Louvin: Exclusive Pre-Grammy Interview – The 9513 – by Juli Thanki
A Conversation with Kathy Mattea – Country Universe – by Kevin Coyne
Heart, soul, and talent: Connie Smith’s recipe for great country music – My Kind of Country – by Razor X
Does Swift Have Tubb Appeal? – Country California – by C.M. Wilcox
Giving The People What They Want: Nashville’s Changing Music Business – The 9513 – by Chris Neal
John Rich: The Interview – The 9513 – by Jim Malec
‘All White’ Darius Rucker Parody – Farce The Music – by Trailer
What would you add to the list? What writers and blogs have you discovered this year and made part of your daily reading?