Alabama music and artists are the focus of the 12th Annual Southern Music Issue of Oxford American magazine now on newsstands. The Alabama Tourism Department coordinated the special issue with the magazine in preparation for 2011’s Year of Music campaign. The 86-page Alabama music section of the magazine features stories about the musicians and their songs from the free CD that accompanies the magazine. The genre of music varies from soul and blues to gospel, country, Rock-A-Billy and Southern rap. The musicians profiled in the magazine include Ralph “Soul” Jackson, Charlie Louvin, Curley Money and His Rolling Ramblers, The K-Pers, The Maddox Brothers and Rose, Mary Gresham, Odetta, Black Haze Express, Dan Pickett, Sammy Salvo, Sam Dees, and Lil Greenwood. The free music CD inserted in the magazine features 27 songs with ties to Alabama. Some of the songs include Hank William’s “Cold, Cold Heart” sung by Dinah Washington, “Abalabip” by Eddie Cole, “Huntsville International” by G-Side and a new song from 2010, “It’s Hard to Be Humble (When You’re From Alabama) by Phosphorescent.
“It’s great honor to have Alabama music featured in a prominent national magazine of this scope,” said tourism director Lee Sentell. “This provides a great background and lead up to our 2011 campaign, the Year of Alabama Music.” A pull-out ad promoting the Year of Alabama Music along with a list of live music venues from Anniston to York are the first pages readers come to upon opening the magazine. The pull-out also features a list of classic hits that were recorded in Muscle Shoals. The Alabama Tourism Department will officially kick off the Year of Alabama music campaign Jan. 20, 2011 in Montgomery.Oxford American and the tourism department are planning several special events for the year. The first event is a concert Sat. Feb. 5, 2011 at the Alabama Theatre in Birmingham. The event, called “Abalabip,” after a song by Eddie Cole, will feature Ralph “Soul” Jackson, The Sex Clark Five, Mary Gresham, Arthur Doyle, and the Secret Sister Band. Tickets are $20.
Information on the Year of Music will be available on the tourism website www.yearofalabamamusic.com and www.facebook.com/AlabamaMusic.