In House #1626: Slaid Cleaves' Unsung; Johnny Cash's Personal File
Singer-songwriter (and former English major) Slaid Cleaves has built his reputation as a wonderful songwriter and storyteller on albums like Broke Down (2000) and Wishbones (2004). For his latest, however, Cleaves puts away his pen and relies on the writing of names like Karen Poston and Adam Carroll-- talented songwriters in their own rights, but with comparatively lower profiles. Unsung features the songs of thirteen songwriters whom Cleaves has come across in one place or another, though you'd barely know they were covers the way he delivers them. While the album isn't as consistently flavored, nor as consistently solid, as Wishbones, there's plenty here to like, highlighted by versions of Poston's "Flowered Dresses," and J.J. Baron's elegy for June Carter-Cash, "Song for June."
Also out today is the 2-disc, 49-track Personal File, delivered by the estate of the late Johnny Cash. No deliberate cash-cow, the collection features all-new material in the form of spare voice and guitar recordings made by Cash at his own House of Cash Studios throughout the 1970's. The collection, simply labeled "Personal File," was unearthed in 2004 by Cash's son, John R. Cash.
Meanwhile, Shooter Jennings, Waylon's son, plays Boise's Big Easy tonight. Jennings is currently touring in support of his recent release, Electric Rodeo, the follow-up to last year's snidely-titled Put the 'O' Back in Country.
In House #1626.
Focus: New releases out today from Slaid Cleaves, Unsung, and Johnny Cash, Personal File, plus Shooter Jennings in Boise tonight and new music from Dave Alvin, Tim Easton and more.
In House PODCAST #109