When I was growing up in East Texas, my family hosted annual (and epic) 4th of July BBQs. Some of my earliest memories are of shaking my tail feathers to country music and zydeco at these get-togethers, and every year I honor the tradition by playing a motley assortment of blues, folk, bluegrass, gospel, and rockabilly. This year I've decided to share some of my favorites, which I always find add a bit of pep to any shindig.
You can find the full mix streaming on Spotify here, or you could follow the links below to Amazon to purchase the tracks individually.
1. Kitty Wells—"Hey Joe"
2. Patsy Cline—"Walking After Midnight"
3. Robert Johnson—"Cross Road Blues"
4. Howlin' Wolf—"How Many More Years"
5. Leadbelly—"Black Betty"
6. Carl Perkins—"Matchbox"
7. George Jones—"White Lightnin'"
8. Earl Scruggs—"Don't Get Above Your Raisin'"
9. Elizabeth Cotten—"Vastopol"
10. The Carter Family—"Will the Circle Be Unbroken"
11. Woody Guthrie—"This Land is Your Land"
12. Porter Wagoner & Dolly Parton—"The Last Thing on My Mind"
13. The Louvin Brothers—"My Baby's Gone"
14. Johnny Paycheck—"She's All I got"
15. Bobbie Gentry—"Ode to Billie Joe"
16. Ricky Nelson—"Boppin' the Blues"
17. Memphis Slim—"Boogie Woogie"
18. Loretta Lynn—"Coal Miner's Daughter"
19. Doc Watson—"Liza Jane"
And for an added bonus, here are a few non-classic tracks that I think are equally well-suited for the 4th:
(Image: Everett Collection/Shutterstock)