Sign up for newsletter
 

Ramblin' Jack Elliott enters studio

Monday, August 18, 2008 – Ramblin' Jack Elliott entered the studio with producer Joe Henry (Bettye LaVette, Solomon Burke, Elvis Costello/Allen Toussaint) to record the follow-up to his Anti- Records debut, 2006's "I Stand Alone." Elliott, 77, sings and plays acoustic guitar, and is backed by musicians including Van Dyke Parks, Brian Wilson's collaborator on "SmiLE," and David Hidalgo of Los Lobos fame on guitar.

Together, musician and producer examine a carefully selected number of pre-WWII blues songs. "Jack Elliot had never approached this music before," said Henry, "but it's important to understand that many of the country blues masters represented here were friends of Jack's. These blues share a tremendous amount - in both form and substance - with the folk music of the same era, the 1930s; and few people made any such distinctions during that day. Everybody was dipping from the same stream, be it Woody Guthrie or Tampa Red, Jimmie Rodgers or Furry Lewis; and Jack drank it all in. His approach is fresh, but authentic. He's using an old language, but he's speaking in the present tense."

The CD will be out next year.

As a budding musician, Jack developed his voice under the tutelage of Woodrow Wilson Guthrie, truck hitching across the country off and on for a couple of years with Guthrie, carrying "only razors and guitars." The pair eventually landed in Topanga Canyon Cal. in the 1950s, where Elliott played for James Dean and stole his girl (who later became Elliott's first wife). On the other coast, Elliott was also a fixture of the Greenwich Village scene, and once spent "three days and a lot of wine" listening to Jack Kerouac read "On the Road." But it is his relationship with a young Bob Dylan that Elliott is perhaps most famous for. Though back in the 1960s the up-and-coming Dylan was often mistakenly dubbed the "son of Jack Elliott," today Elliott simply states "Dylan learned from me the same way I learned from Woody."

More news for Ramblin' Jack Elliott

CD reviews for Ramblin' Jack Elliott

A Stranger Here CD review - A Stranger Here
Now in his late 70s, Ramblin' Jack Elliott has been a presence on the American folk music scene for more than a half-century, and other than Woody Guthrie's own kids is pretty much the last direct link to Guthrie and the Depression-era folk music that Elliott grew up on. A large part of that music was the "country blues" being performed and recorded by people like Mississippi John Hurt, Rev. Gary Davis, Son House and Blind Lemon Jefferson. Elliott pays tribute to all these and »»»
The Long Ride
Ramblin' Jack Elliot, with his shaky yet sure voice, has been telling stories for longer than some of us have been alive, and with this, his story trail continues undeterred. The song selection supports the idea that a great story is a great story - no matter how old or young it is. If that were not true, than why does Elliott sound equally convincing on a new Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan song "Pony" and the Stones' "Connection," as he does on so many of these public domain numbers? Elliott »»»
Friends of Mine
We should all be lucky enough to have Jerry Jeff Walker, Emmylou Harris and Tom Waits for friends. We should all lucky enough to have lived and toured with Woody Guthrie or influenced Bob Dylan early in his career. And while most of us can't, Ramblin' Jack Elliot can. As a human confluence of 40 years of people, places and songs, Elliot draws from a bottomless well of experience in this series of duets. He recalls his earliest influence with Guthrie's "Hard Travelin'," and his Greenwich Village »»»
Editorial: Walking the talk – When names like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Waylon and the Hag are invoked, you're talking hard core country. These are the touchstones of country , the guys who made country music what it was and still is (or maybe can be). When these folks would sing about being down-and-out and the rough-and-tumble, they knew of what they were singing about. Fast forward a few years to the country singers of today. »»»
Concert Review: LSD tour provides a lot of highs – This was not your grandkids' country, that's for sure. Even the name of the tour - the LSD Tour - was a throwback (albeit far before the principals were making music). But make no mistake about it. With the ever cool country traditionalist Dwight Yoakam, the country with some rock and blues and rabble rousing of Steve Earle thrown in and the... »»»
Concert Review: Alvin, Gilmore fortunately get together – Dave Alvin and Jimmie Dale Gilmore had known each other for decades, but it wasn't until last year that they toured together in a guitar pull setting. What started as a small Texas tour mushroomed into points east and west and eventually the release earlier this month of their blues-based disc, "Downey to Lubbock." And now we have the... »»»
Follow Country Standard Time  Subscribe to Country News Digest  Follow Country Standard Time on twitter  Visit Country Standard Time on Facebook 

Elsewhere in the news

Currently at the CST blogs

Tyminski goes dark Dan Tyminski (known simply as "Tyminski" on his 2017 release "Southern Gothic") has traditional music roots and unassailable bluegrass street cred especially given his membership in Alison Krauss' Union Station. He is also a powerful songwriter and has been writing songs for himself and others for years now.... »»»
Washburn, Fleck create "Echoes" Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn have powerhouse individual talents; each has followed an estimable career path to where they find themselves today: making complex, but spare, records, writing music together and touring with their son Juno. Their new release, "Echoes In The Valley" features mostly songs written by Fleck and Washburn, banjos, Washburn's strong vocals and very little else.... »»»
Hillman bides his time Legends don't come any more legendary than Chris Hillman. The roll call of bands that comprises Hillman's half century in music reads like a wing exhibit at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame; Byrds, Flying Burrito Brothers, Manassas, the Souther Hillman Furay Band, the Desert Rose Band,... »»»
Bigger CD review - Bigger
Sugarland is back with "Bigger," its first studio album in nearly a decade. And its arrival says more about branding, than anything else. Although his voice is heard often enough on this album to make his presence felt, it's still difficult to get away from seeing Kristian Bush in the Oates to Hall or Ridgeley to Michael role in this duo.  »»»
This One's For You Too CD review - This One's For You Too
Luke Combs has gotten a lot of life out of his album "This One's for You," which includes his breakthrough hit "Hurricane," as well as the popular single "When It Rains It Pours." This deluxe edition includes five new tracks, many of which are just as strong as the original 12.  »»»
Things Change CD review - Things Change
There may be no other CD title this year quite as apropos as this one. Things have indeed changed for American Aquarium since their previous studio album (2015's underrated "Wolves"). For one thing 80 per cent of the band quit, leaving only lead vocalist and songwriter BJ Barham. »»»
Dancing With The Beast CD review - Dancing With The Beast
Informed by the renewed strength of today's woman's movement, particularly in light of recent cultural social and political upheavals, Gretchen Peters' "Dancing With the Beast" finds her sharing stories about loss, struggle, upheaval, tragedy and turmoil in ways that resonate with a common bond, though told from a woman's perspective. »»»
Hard Times Are Relative CD review - Hard Times Are Relative
Jason Boland and The Stragglers serve up the ninth helping of their unapologetic, get it or not, country, in the past 20 years. This appears to almost be two EP's with the first mostly being a hard country dance cd and the second being a little more "out there" mix of fun and contemplative tunes, much less easy to categorize. »»»