Roots Music

James McMurtry – Complicated Game (2015)

James McMurtry – Complicated Game (2015)

‘Complicated Game,’ James McMurtry’s first album in seven years, finds his narrative rigor once again in sharp focus.

John Oates – Another Good Road (2015)

John Oates – Another Good Road (2015)

John Oates’ intimate forthcoming live release, ‘Another Good Road,’ gives us new perspective on an exciting period of musical growth.

Robbie Robertson, “It Is a Good Day to Die” (1994): Across the Great Divide

Robbie Robertson, “It Is a Good Day to Die” (1994): Across the Great Divide

Crazy Horse, as Robbie Robertson’s “It Is a Good Day to Die” makes clear, wasn’t being boastful. This wasn’t a warrior’s cry.

Inside the sessions for Bob Dylan’s gutsy new standards album: ‘People broke down crying’

Inside the sessions for Bob Dylan’s gutsy new standards album: ‘People broke down crying’

‘Shadows in the Night’ engineer Al Schmitt is still marveling over the chances taken by Bob Dylan on the forthcoming project.

Gregg Allman prepares his next, typically uncategorizable move: ‘Everybody seems to want some kind of label’

Gregg Allman prepares his next, typically uncategorizable move: ‘Everybody seems to want some kind of label’

Gregg Allman has turned his attention to a new solo album. Just don’t ask him to define it — or even nail down an exact release date.

Pops Staples, “Somebody Was Watching” from Don’t Lose This (2015): One Track Mind

Pops Staples, “Somebody Was Watching” from Don’t Lose This (2015): One Track Mind

Fifteen years after his death, Pops Staples returns — as sweetly vibrant, as light-filled and meaningful, as deeply soulful as ever.

Mickey Newbury, “The Long Road Home” (2002): One Track Mind

Mickey Newbury, “The Long Road Home” (2002): One Track Mind

An ailing Mickey Newbury saved one of his best songs for the final album released during his lifetime.

Levon Helm, “Even a Fool Would Let Go” from Levon Helm (1982): Across the Great Divide

Levon Helm, “Even a Fool Would Let Go” from Levon Helm (1982): Across the Great Divide

A journeyman country tune makes the case all over again for Levon Helm’s tender, heart-openingly emotional side.

Butch Walker + Bob Mould, “Father’s Day” from Afraid of Ghosts (2015): One Track Mind

Butch Walker + Bob Mould, “Father’s Day” from Afraid of Ghosts (2015): One Track Mind

Bob Mould’s scorching turn might have obscured a lesser singer. But Butch Walker’s resonant voice carries “Father’s Day.”

Joni Mitchell’s intriguing jazz period began 41 years ago: ‘An incredible legacy in music’

Joni Mitchell’s intriguing jazz period began 41 years ago: ‘An incredible legacy in music’

Robben Ford discusses Joni Mitchell’s jazz period in the 1970s. He performed on some of her most closely dissected, if not always best loved, albums.