Today’s gift guide pick is “Welcome To Alabama,” the debut album from frequent guests of The Empty Glass and The Boulevard Tavern, The Kenneth Brian Band.

This album, available anywhere CDs are sold, features Charleston’s Travis Stephens, Brian’s bandmate, on harmony vocals and rhythm guitar is a primer on the New South, with a modern fusion of blues, outlaw county, and just enough roots-rock energy to warm the hearts of any Southern Man. Produced by the legendary Johnny Sandlin (Allman Bros. Band), the album features an impressive line-up of Southern music-makers including David Hood, Randall Bramblett, Bonnie Bramlett, Jason Isbell, and more.

Standout tracks include the slow groove, “Last Call,”which features guest vocals by Lillie Mae Rische, the crunchy rock tune, “Tonight We Ride,” the tender “Cry To The Dark,” and the catchy title track.

The playing and vocals are near perfect throughout, and the production well serves Brian’s skillful songwriting. Also of note are the guest vocals by Bonnie Bramlett on the album’s sole cover tune, Dicky Bett’s “Nothing You Can Do.”

This CD is the perfect gift for any country music fan, alt-country afficianado or roots-rock enthusiast on your Christmas list. “Welcome To Alabama” is pure Americana gold.