Kim Simpson’s Top 10

1. Cowboy “Manuel” Donley and His Trio Romantic-o – The Brown Recluse Sessions
An overdue gift from Austin’s godfather of tejano.

2. Kelly Joe Phelps – Brother Sinner and the Whale
One man and one acoustic guitar delivering standard-setting gospel and blues.

3. Chris Smither – Hundred Dollar Valentine
Aphoristic fun from a well-traveled troubadour.

4. The Wandering – Go Home, You Can’t Stay Here
A collective “hang out” cover song album that thwarts all skeptics.

5. Luther Dickinson – Hambone’s Meditiations
Acoustic guitar instrumentals from one very busy dude.

6. Vinicio Capossela – Rebetiko Gymnastas
The Italian Tom Waits goes Greek and sounds better than ever.

7. Maneli Jamal – The Lamaj Movement
Inventive acoustic instrumentals from an Iraqi virtuoso.

8. Angel Olsen – Half Way Home
Arresting songs that succeed in spite of – or because of – the verge-of-sobbing vocals. You decide.

9. Heikki Laitinen and Kimmo Pohjonen – Murhaballadeja: Murder Ballads
Strangely compelling feel-bad music from Finland.

10. Eric Bibb – Deeper in the Well
Another satisfying folk/blues outing demonstrating that time’s on Bibb’s side.

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