In reviewing the music of 2009, I was struck by how good it actually was. My first thought was that no one recording knocked me out as the run away best of the year, but there were so many exceptional ones, it was hard to pick just ten.
Levon HelmOne of the great surprises of Levon Helm's Midnight Ramble at his home studio in Woodstock was finding Larry Campbell was the guitarist, and (presumably) his band leader.
The other great surprise was that the music was better than I ever imagined.
I'm speaking as of a huge fan of The Band. It never occurred to me that Levon and his band could match the Southern Pine/Canadian rock The Band had at the top of their game. I underestimated Levon, and his band.