July 4, 2010
"Broken Hearts and Dirty Windows: The Songs of John Prine" - Guest Review by Ragtime Ralph
There are certain musical artists in this world whose songs are so basic and vital and "tell it like is" that countless covers and variations of their themes will never dilute the hidden truth and beauty behind the song titles and lyrics...to my mind John Prine is my favorite example...his bittersweet tales of the human condition (tempered by ironic exasperation) have echoed in my mind for over thirty years.
This CD brought back many pleasant memories of John Prine and (the late, great) Steve Goodman at the Queen Elizabeth Theater in Vancouver, BC, Canada...a simple acoustic stage setup was all Prine needed to impress upon us his visions of life, love and the absurd little moments we all encounter.
It seems to me it would be meaningless to review each contributors versions of Prine's songs (although...I was broiling a rack of lamb during Lambchops version of "6 O' Clock News!") because each and every contributor has (to me anyways) nailed each song on the head and drove it appropriately home!
John Prine is a treasure trove of emotion, humor and truth in the cold, calculating, disappointing world we all live in...and this CD finds all the contributors in fine fettle!
- Review by Ralph Johnston
1. Justin Vernon of Bon Iver - "Bruised Orange (Chain Of Sorrow)"
2. Conor Oberst And The Mystic Valley Band - "Wedding Day In Funeralville"
3. My Morning Jacket - "All The Best"
4. Josh Ritter - "Mexican Home"
5. Lambchop - "Six O'Clock News"
6. Justin Townes Earle - "Far From Me"
7. The Avett Brothers - "Spanish Pipedream"
8. Old Crow Medicine Show - "Angel From Montgomery"
9. Sara Watkins - "The Late John Garfield Blues"
10. Drive-By Truckers - "Daddy's Little Pumpkin"
11. Deer Tick featuring Liz Isenberg - "Unwed Fathers"
12. Those Darlins - "Let's Talk Dirty In Hawaiian"