BONUS TRACKS: Remembering David Lindley, LGBTQ Support in Tennessee, and More
David Lindley at Mountain Stage in 2016 (photo by Amos Perrine)
When the news spread last weekend that multi-instrumentalist David Lindley had died, musicians from virtually every modern genre expressed sadness and appreciation. He recorded and toured with hit singer-songwriters in the pop world like Jackson Browne, Warren Zevon, and James Taylor, as well as some familiar roots names: John Prine, Ry Cooder, Graham Nash, and David Crosby, to list just a few. (Before all that, of course, he was a member of Kaleidoscope in the 1960s.) You can get an idea of the scope of his sideman magic just by browsing his vast credits (though some of his contributions on recordings were uncredited), or get a lovely overview in this remembrance from Rolling Stone aptly titled “There Were Sidemen. And Then There Was David Lindley.”
In the aftermath of Tennessee’s passage of bills banning gender-affirming health care for transgender children and prohibiting vaguely defined “adult-oriented entertainment,” including “male and female impersonators,” from performing on public property, a large roster of musicians who call the state home announced plans to gather for a concert titled “Love Rising” to support the LGBTQ community and raise money for the state’s advocacy groups. The show, March 20 at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena, will include music from Jason Isbell, Allison Russell, Maren Morris, Yola, Sheryl Crow, and many others, as well as dancing and, hell yes, drag performances. “These bills add up to an attempt to eradicate a valuable part of our community and force good people to live in fear,” Isbell said in a statement. “We can’t in good conscience just stand by and let that happen.” Learn more about the Love Rising concert in this story from The Tennessean.
Other musicians have expressed opposition to these bills as well, on social media and at shows. The Vandoliers, based in Texas, marked their latest visit to Tennessee with a show in which all six members wore dresses. The dresses were then auctioned to raise money for Knoxville-based Knox Pride and the Tennessee Equality Project. Read more about the show (and don’t miss the photo!) in this coverage from Rolling Stone.
The application window opened this week for the 2023 FreshGrass Awards. The awards, whose final competitions take place at the FreshGrass Festival in North Adams, Massachusetts in September, celebrate and empower emerging roots music artists via a cash prize and other rewards. Past winners of the FreshGrass award, given in the categories of Band, Fiddle, Banjo, and Guitar, include AJ Lee and Blue Summit (band), Tray Wellington (banjo), Julian Pinelli (fiddle), Bronwyn Keith-Hynes (fiddle), Catherine Bowness (banjo), and Twisted Pine (band). Learn more about the awards and find the submission form here, and be sure to get your submission in by May 11! The FreshGrass Awards and festivals are part of the FreshGrass Foundation, publisher of No Depression.
Rufus Wainwright is celebrating his upcoming 50th birthday with a new album that reinvents some folk deep cuts with a long list of musical guests. Folkocracy, out June 2 on BMG, features Brandi Carlile, Sheryl Crow, David Byrne, Chaka Khan, John Legend, and many more performing songs that Wainwright, son of Loudon Wainwright III and Kate McGarrigle, grew up listening to around the house and at folk festivals the family attended. “The older I get, the more I appreciate how valuable my folk knowledge is, to have had it ingrained in me as a child,” Wainwright said in a press release announcing the album. “I’m from a bona fide folkocracy who mixed extensively with other folkocracies such as the Seegers and the Thompsons. I spun off into opera and pop. Now I’m back where it all began.” The album’s first single, the murder ballad “Down in the Willow Garden,” finds Wainwright in tight harmonies with Brandi Carlile, as seen and heard in the video below:
WHAT WE’RE LISTENING TO
Here’s a sampling of the songs, albums, bands, and sounds No Depression staffers have been into this week:
Peter One featuring Allison Russell – “Birds Go Die Out of Sight (Don’t Go Home),” from his new album, Come Back to Me, coming in May
Slaid Cleaves – “Through the Dark”
Page McConnell and Trey Anastasio – “Dancing in Midair”
North Americans – “The Last Rockabilly,” from their new album, Long Cool World, coming in April
Anaïs Mitchell – Anaïs Mitchell
Dylan Earl – I Saw the Arkansas
Cruz Contreras – “Doin’ Time,” from his new album, Cosmico, coming in June
Sturgill Simpson – “The Promise” (When in Rome cover)
Fantastic Cat – “Keep Me in Your Heart for a While” (Warren Zevon cover)