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The ECMAs for the year have all been handed out, and Maritimer, and frequent St. John’s visitor, Old Man Luedecke has won  Album of the Year for his catchy, sing-along-song-filled country album, Tender is the Night. What a treat to see the honour go to a deserving album instead of some run of the mill candy pop garbage. Here’s a track of it called “This May Hurt a Bit.”

There’s got to be 1000 musicians trying to pull off what this man does so  genuinely and so effortlessly. Old Man Luedecke was rocking the banjo long before it was the staple it is today (in music of his genre), and this old soul is hands down, easily and authentically, the Hank Williams of our hipster generation. He writes A.M. country gold so great Hank himself would be fondly jealous. In fact, songs like “Song for Ian Tyson” sound like Hank crawled out of his grave to write one more song … except for the fact that Chris Luedecke has, officially, eclipsed the legend in songwriting prowess. Not only is he genuinely living the musician’s life (something his endearingly witty lyrics captures to a T), he gives  subtle nods to his genre’s greatest songs and songwriters, and  he’s releasing records at an admirable pace, with each, somehow, topping the last. Particularly from From track 5 to its closer, Tender is the Night showcases Luedecke as a genuine national treasure. It’s a filler-free album, and remains the finest Canadian country album since its 2012 release. With instrumentation as interesting as it is catchy, and lyrics that add depth and distinction to the music, Tender is the Night houses thirteen terrific tunes that’ll make you long for straw in yer mouth, the sun in your eyes, and a simpler life in this woesome, wicked world.