Album: Colvin & Earle

Artist: Shawn Colvin & Steve Earle

Label: Fantasy

Release Date: June 10, 2016


The Upshot: Nary a false moment or a bad song.


One of the beautiful things about the implosion of major record label (aside from the obvious schadenfreude of watching folks who exploited their artists for decades while lining their own pockets suddenly be out of work via consolidations, much like they tossed out their musicians), is that a record like Colvin & Earle likely never would have surfaced when both were signed to major labels.

The self-titled album is a mix of Folk, Blues, Country and Americana without any hint of an obvious radio single or trying to appeal to the widest audience possible. It’s simply two talented artists playing music that they obviously dig and the result is just as fun to listen to. Steve Earle and Shawn Colvin sound remarkable together, sharing vocals and guitars on all 10 tracks.

The two go back 30 years, when Colvin opened a show for Earle, but it wasn’t until 2014 when they finally teamed up for a proper tour together. Along with breathing new life into The Stones “Ruby Tuesday,” Emmy Lou Harris’ “Raise the Dead” (as well as two other covers), Colvin and Earle offer a full range of emotions on this record from the beautiful Blues/Gospel-tinged “Tell Moses,” to the irresistibly cheery “Happy and Free” and the more maudlin “You’re Still Gone.” There is not a false moment or bad song on the album.

Yet one more positive thing to come from the collapse of the old school record label.

DOWNLOAD: “Tell Moses,” “Ruby Tuesday” and “Happy and Free”

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