Signup for a folk alley account
Folk Alley Listener Poll - Best of 2014
 

 

Folk Alley Listener Poll Results: Top 50 Folk & Americana Albums of 2014

2014 proved to be, yet, another outstanding year for new folk, roots and Americana music! Exciting new artists like Parker Millsap, Sturgill Simpson and Hurray for Riff Raff emerged on the scene. And we were treated to long-awaited releases from artists who had been sitting it out for a while (Nickel Creek, The Duhks, Jackson Browne, etc...)

Over a two week span, Folk Alley listeners were invited to vote for their Top 10 albums of the year, and the results are in. 

Below are Folk Alley Listeners' Top 50 Folk & Americana Albums of 2014!

Click HERE to listen to the Best of 2014 Stream that features the Listener Poll results, plus Folk Alley Host & Staff Top Picks of the year!

Folk Alley Music Director, Linda Fahey's Top Picks for 2014 at NPR Music - HERE

2013 Listener Poll results - HERE
2013 Folk Alley host & staff picks - HERE


 

ArtistNameLabel
1Rosanne CashThe River & The ThreadBlue Note Records
2The Stray BirdsBest MedicineYep Roc Records
3Bela Fleck & Abigail WashburnBela Fleck & Abigail WashburnRounder Records
4Nickel CreekA Dotted LineNonesuch
5Hurray for the Riff RaffSmall Town HeroesATO Records
6Lucinda WilliamsDown Where the Spirit Meets the BoneHighway 20 Records (Thirty Tigers)
7Rodney CrowellTarpaper SkyNew West
8John FullbrightSongsBlue Dirt Records (Thirty Tigers)
9Old Crow Medicine ShowRemedyATO Records
10John GorkaBright Side Of DownRed House
11Will KimbroughSideshow LoveDaphne Records
12Eliza GilkysonThe Nocturne DiariesRed House Records
13Mary GauthierTrouble and LoveIn the Black Records
14Red MollyThe Red AlbumRed Molly
15First Aid KitStay GoldColumbia Records
16Jesse WinchesterA Reasonable Amount of TroubleAppleseed Recordings
17Parker MillsapParker MillsapOkrahoma Records/Thirty Tigers
18Shovels & RopeSwimmin' TimeDualtone
19Sturgill SimpsonMetamodern Sounds In Country MusicHigh Top Mountain (Thirty Tigers)
20Chris SmitherStill On the LeveeSignature Sounds
21Bob DylanThe Basement Tapes Raw: The Bootleg Series Vol. 11Columbia/Legacy
22Jackson BrowneStanding In The BreachInside Recordings
23The DuhksBeyond the BlueCompass Records
24Ellis PaulChasing BeautyBlack Wolf Records
25Hard Working AmericansHard Working AmericansMelvin Records/Thirty Tigers
26Steve Martin & The Steep Canyon Rangers feat. Edie BrickellLiveRounder Records
27Justin Townes EarleSingle MothersVagrant Records
28Chatham County LineTightropeYep Roc Records
29Mark ErelliMilltownsHillbilly Pilgrim Music
30The Infamous StringdustersLet It GoHigh Country Recordings/Thirty Tigers
31John HiattTerms of My SurrenderNew West
32Cahalen Morrison & Eli WestI'll Swing My Hammer With Both My HandsCahalen Morrison & Eli West
33Dave Alvin & Phil AlvinCommon Ground: Dave Alvin & Phil Alvin Play and Sing the Songs of Big Bill BroonzyYep Roc Records
34Anais MitchellxoaWilderland Records
35Willie WatsonFolk Singer Vol.1Acony Records
36VARIOUSLooking Into You: A Tribute to Jackson BrowneMusic Road Records
37Joe CrookstonGeorgia I'm HereMilagrito Records
38The Hello StrangersThe Hello StrangersIMI Music
39The Honey DewdropsLive from Folk Alley at Fayetteville Roots FestivalThe Honey Dewdrops
40Keb' Mo'BluesamericanaKind of Blue Music
41Loudon Wainwright IIIHaven't Got the Blues (Yet)429 Records
42ThompsonFamilyFantasy Records
43Robert EllisThe Lights from the Chemical PlantNew West Records
44Kris DelmhorstBlood TestSignature Sounds
45The Early MaysThe Early MaysThe Early Mays
46Hot RizeWhen I'm FreeTen In Hand Records (Thirty Tigers)
47Leonard CohenPopular ProblemsColumbia Records
48Trampled By TurtlesWild AnimalsBanjoDad Records (Thirty Tigers)
49Red JuneAncient DreamsOrganic Records
50The New Basement TapesLost on the River: The New Basement TapesElectromagnetic Recordings / Harvest Records


You must be logged in to leave a comment
Comments


A mere two Canadians and nothing from the rest of the world. How can you possibly call this the best of 2014?

Posted by Roddy Campbell on January 29, 2015

 
Red Molly new album has some beauties, so many originals and a couple covers that with knock your socks off. Moll Venter's "Sing to Me" is amazing. Abbie's dobro strumming is amazing!

Posted by Ginger Fowler on December 20, 2014

 
Red Molly new album has some beauties, so many originals and a couple covers that with knock your socks off. Moll Venter's "Sing to Me" is amazing. Abbie's dobro strumming is amazing!

Posted by Ginger Fowler on December 20, 2014

 
Missing: Natalie Merchant, Natalie Merchant. Alexa Woodward, Might Nigh. Jenny Scheinman, Littlest Prisoner. Gregory Page, One Way Journey Home. Claudia Schmidt, New Whirled Order. Dave McGraw & Mandy Fer, Maritime. Steve Dawson, Rattlesnake Cage and several British folk albums.

Posted by Hans Jansen on December 18, 2014

 
Chris Smither for certain. What an accomplished singer songwriter

Posted by John Jordan on December 16, 2014

 
Will Kimbrough and every groove he is part of!!

Posted by Ford G. on December 16, 2014

 
Will Kimbrough !

Posted by on December 16, 2014

 
Anything that Will Kimbrough is involved with

Posted by tim huffman on December 16, 2014

 
A few that I didn't see on the list: Robyn Hitchcock (The Man Upstairs), Richard Thompson (Acoustic Classics), Chrissie Hynde (Stockholm)

Posted by Brian M. on December 16, 2014

 

Posted by on December 16, 2014

 
Love Will Kimbrough - awesome talent!

Posted by Lisa on December 16, 2014

 
LOVE Will Kimbrough!

Posted by Cheryl Kayser on December 16, 2014

 
LOVE Will Kimbrough!

Posted by Cheryl Kayser on December 16, 2014

 
Sideshow Love is a great album and so is Willy Sugarcapps first album.

Posted by Mary Bonnell on December 16, 2014

 
Great year for great music.

Posted by Will Kimbrough on December 16, 2014

 
Love the mix of instruments & the sweet, gentle voices!!!

Posted by Jane Weissert on December 15, 2014

 
Lots of great music this year. Tough to pick just 10

Posted by Jeff from Lancaster on December 15, 2014

 
Birds of Chicago released Live From SPACE in 2014. It's a great album.

Posted by Furry Lewis on December 15, 2014

 
Love the harmonizing of The Early Mays!!

Posted by John Pinkerton on December 14, 2014

 
The Early Mays and The Sea The Sea both released amazing albums this year!

Posted by Linda Holsing on December 14, 2014

 
The Early Mays and The Sea The Sea both released amazing albums this year!

Posted by Linda Holsing on December 14, 2014

 
I picked 10 with "Carter Girl" by Carlene Carter as my number one!

Posted by Patti Timmerman on December 14, 2014

 
I picked 10 with "Carter Girl" by Carlene Carter as my number one!

Posted by Patti Timmerman on December 14, 2014

 
Feisty, sexy, funny. Don't talk, just listen... to the Hello Strangers.

Posted by Erk on December 14, 2014

 
The Hello Strangers get my vote! Awesome music! Every song!

Posted by Bill Hose on December 14, 2014

 
I vote for The Hello Strangers.

Posted by Candy on December 13, 2014

 

Posted by on December 13, 2014

 
Hello Strangers!

Posted by Tracy Salka on December 13, 2014

 
I'm really into Shook Twins right now. What We Do is a very good album.

Posted by Dave on December 12, 2014

 
Voting for The Hello Strangers!

Posted by Joel on December 12, 2014

 
Voting for The Hello Strangers

Posted by Robert Mathieson on December 12, 2014

 
The Hello Strangers

Posted by Pattie K on December 12, 2014

 
The Hello Strangers

Posted by Ryan on December 12, 2014

 
TheHello Strangers

Posted by Laurie MUfson on December 12, 2014

 
Hello Strangers!!!

Posted by on December 12, 2014

 
The Hello Strangers

Posted by Laurie MUfson on December 12, 2014

 
The Hello Strangers!

Posted by Brian on December 12, 2014

 
'Hello Strangers' - oh, yeagh!

Posted by JES on December 12, 2014

 
Love "Departures" by The Once!! Happy Holidays, All!!

Posted by Randy on December 12, 2014

 
The Hello Strangers!! Love them : )

Posted by Donna on December 12, 2014

 
The Hello Strangers, album "The Hello Strangers"

Posted by Barbara on December 11, 2014

 
Wish we were allowed to pick more, maybe 20? :0)

Posted by Monica on December 10, 2014

 
I don't see several of the albums I picked as 'best of 2014' before I looked at your list. I would definitely include Nathan Bell's BLOOD LIKE A RIVER, Mark Viator & Susan Maxey's BOTTOM OF THE BLUES, Richard Berman's YOU'RE HOME NOW, Larry Kaplan's SONGS FOR AN AUGUST MOON, Nathan Bowles NANSEMOND, Matt Harlan's RAVEN HOTEL, and Malcomb Holcombe's PITIFUL BLUES, just to name a few.

Posted by Larry Looney on December 10, 2014

 
Love to see the Run Boy Run, Littlest Birds, and Michael Barnett added to the list. Three of my favorite releases this year.

Posted by Matt on December 08, 2014

 
Thanks Linda, I thought 'Quiet About It: A Tribute to Jesse Winchester' had just come out 5-6 months ago. Dumb of me.

Posted by Art Pacheco on December 08, 2014

 
Great supporting so many singer-songwriters who've played in our Bowman House Concert Series, metro Atlanta's longest-running house concert series. Spreading the word for others to join in the voting.

Posted by bowman on December 08, 2014

 
Art, 'Quiet About It: A Tribute to Jesse Winchester' isn't on the list because it came out in September of 2012. (It was on our 2012 list.)

Posted by Linda Fahey on December 08, 2014

 
Some of you are mentioning albums that are from last year (e.g. Emmylou Harris,Rodney Crowell-Old Yellow Moon, Aoife O'Donovan Fossils). D.T., it's in the introduction that you can "select up to 10."

Posted by Art Pacheco on December 08, 2014

 
Why is "Quiet About It a Tribute To Jesse Winchester" by Various Artists not on this list? To me, it is a major omission, particularly by a folk music oriented station.

Posted by Art Pacheco on December 08, 2014

 
Thanks for publishing this list. I voted for my faves and discovered many new releases to try.

Posted by Grateful Dud on December 06, 2014

 
So much great new stuff this year, it was difficult to narrow it down to 10 favorites.

Posted by Peggy Szymeczek on December 06, 2014

 
Whoops, just saw it. My bad!

Posted by BJ on December 06, 2014

 
The Early Mays, self titled. 2nd on the folk DJ charts in October. Where is it in the list above? Really great stuff!

Posted by BJ on December 06, 2014

 
It says above "one vote per person" so what gives with people saying it's hard to pick 10?

Posted by D.T. on December 05, 2014

 
I'd like all 10 votes cast for Carrie Newcomer's "A Permeable Life"

Posted by Kathleen Hanika on December 05, 2014

 
Victoria Blythe's just released Silver Flyer--seriously gorgeous folk-jazz cross-over.

Posted by Greg B on December 05, 2014

 

Posted by Supr on December 04, 2014

 

Posted by Supr on December 04, 2014

 
Love them Stray Birds!

Posted by Marcelle on December 04, 2014

 
Old Yellow Moon-Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell

Posted by Sharolyn Bennett on December 04, 2014

 
Best Album: The Willows - Amidst Fiery Skies - Elk Records

Posted by David Savage on December 04, 2014

 
Best Album: The Willows - Amidst Fiery Skies - Elk Records

Posted by David Savage on December 04, 2014

 
Oh, and Bradford Loomis and Beth Whitney - The Banner Days

Posted by Michael Stover on December 04, 2014

 
Jiggley Jones - A Mountain, A Struggle, A Tunnel, A Light Ed Roman - Letters From High Latitudes

Posted by Michael Stover on December 04, 2014

 
At some point in time the generation that experienced talent like The Byrds, Niel Young, Crosby, Stills and Nash had to have a come back. That time has come, but with a little more diversity in the form of: The Stray Birds.

Posted by Junita Hahn on December 04, 2014

 
Aoife O'Donovan Fossils!

Posted by Larry Rose on December 04, 2014

 
In case you missed it in the above paragraph...(and it seems like some of you have!) In the ballot below (viewable only after you log-in on the website) there are over 190 albums that include music Folk Alley added to the steam this year (plus a few others). It's very possible that one of your favorites might be missing from the ballot. Don't take it personally. We receive well over a 1000 CDs each year, and we can't possibly add everything that comes through the door. If you don't see one of your favorite 2014 releases on the ballot, by all means, please write the artist and album title in the comments box below.

Posted by Linda Fahey on December 04, 2014

 
This list is poorly and desperately incomplete. Can't vote because 90% of my favorites are not on the list. The Littlest Birds - Live & Lucky Sweetwater String Band - River of Rhymes Run Boy Run - Something to Someone Lake Street Dive ??????!!!!! How could you not have Lake Street Dive!!!! etc etc etc...

Posted by Dave H on December 04, 2014

 
Where are The Littlest Birds (Live & Lucky) or Sweetwater String Band (River of Rhymes) or Run Boy Run (Something to someone), or Lake Street Dive (bad self portraits), or Quiles and Cloud (Seminole Star). Can't vote until more of the Albums I'm digging are on this list!

Posted by Sharon on December 04, 2014

 
I wish very well-known people were not on the list, much as I like and admire the likes of John Hiatt and Leonard Cohen. Need more room for struggling greats :)

Posted by Guy Johnson on December 04, 2014

 
RUN BOY RUN's latest album "Something to Someone" released October 2014 deserves to be #1

Posted by Peter Rolland on December 04, 2014

 
Only 10 votes makes that tough, I really wanted 13 or 14 votes.

Posted by Nathan on December 04, 2014

 
Lynne Hanson's album "River of Sand" was released in September and deserves a place of honour on this list!

Posted by Grant on December 04, 2014

 
Leonard Cohen Popular Problems... it was a tough choice, as there are so so many good albums out there.

Posted by Renee Weitzner on December 04, 2014

 
Ari Hest - Shouts and Whispers

Posted by Stan Garfield on December 04, 2014

 
Slightly confused. Lucinda Williams but no Lydia Loveless. Baffling...

Posted by Stevo on December 04, 2014

 
Connor Garvey - Meteors & Beating Hearts

Posted by Jill Padua on December 04, 2014

 
*If you're looking for the Chris Smither 'Still On the Levee' album to vote for, it's last on the ballot. Sorry, Jim! :-)

Posted by Linda Fahey on December 04, 2014

 
Maz O'Connor "This Willowed Light"

Posted by Matt Bittner on December 03, 2014

 
Album: Future Pilot Group: We're about 9

Posted by on December 03, 2014

 
 
Support Folk Alley During Our Spring Fund Drive!

 

Share on Facebook