Roots Music

Daniel Lanois, “Iceland” from Flesh and Machine (2014): One Track Mind

Daniel Lanois, “Iceland” from Flesh and Machine (2014): One Track Mind

Daniel Lanois’ “Iceland” is unutterably beautiful at one turn, dark and humid the next

Leonard Cohen – Popular Problems (2014)

Leonard Cohen – Popular Problems (2014)

He remains a mystery, as misunderstood as his most famous song, as purposeful in his third act as he is utterly aware of the creeping shadows all around.

Across the Great Divide: The Band, “Ain’t That a Lot of Love” from Islands (1977)

Across the Great Divide: The Band, “Ain’t That a Lot of Love” from Islands (1977)

Slow to get started, this R&B romp finishes on a high note.

Don Felder on the Eagles’ struggles to complete The Long Run: ‘We kept trying to raise the bar higher’

Don Felder on the Eagles’ struggles to complete The Long Run: ‘We kept trying to raise the bar higher’

Feeling pressure from all sides, the Eagles simply cracked.

Bruce Springsteen Songs about Cars: Gimme Five

Bruce Springsteen Songs about Cars: Gimme Five

They were as ubiquitous, at one point, as songs about girls.

One Track Mind: Thompson, “One Life at a Time” from Family (2014)

One Track Mind: Thompson, “One Life at a Time” from Family (2014)

Richard Thompson sings here about taking a moment to understand blessings, beginning with the blessing of being left alone. Completely understandable, considering the situation.

Deep Cuts from the Band’s Self-Titled 1969 Masterpiece: Gimme Five

Deep Cuts from the Band’s Self-Titled 1969 Masterpiece: Gimme Five

Even lesser-known tracks continue to yield important insights, decades later.

One Track Mind: Pokey LaFarge’s Central Time Tour, “Mama Don’t Allow” (2014)

One Track Mind: Pokey LaFarge’s Central Time Tour, “Mama Don’t Allow” (2014)

They take a kind of orchestral approach to the hootenanny aesthetic.

Across the Great Divide: Rick Danko, “What a Town” from Rick Danko (1977)

Across the Great Divide: Rick Danko, “What a Town” from Rick Danko (1977)

Danko carries this song, as he could most any, by sheer force of exuberance.

One Track Mind: Cat Stevens, “Dying to Live” from Tell ‘Em I’m Gone (2014)

One Track Mind: Cat Stevens, “Dying to Live” from Tell ‘Em I’m Gone (2014)

Both the singer and the song are revitalized here.