Album of the Week: Dan Auerbach, 'Waiting on a Song'

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Dan Auerbach, 'Waiting on a Song'
Dan Auerbach, 'Waiting on a Song' (Courtesy of Easy Eye Sound)
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Russ Pahl, Duane Eddy, Dave Roe, David Ferguson, Bobby Wood. Do those names sound familiar? If you dig into the liner notes of Dan Auerbach's latest album, and second solo record, Waiting on A Song, you'll find a who's who of the Nashville music scene. Google any name and the words "innovator" "genius" and "iconic" usually pop up with a short history typically explaining their connection to Elvis, Willie Nelson, or Johnny Cash and containing the date of their induction into some sort of Hall of Fame. This is a living history lesson, crafted by an adoring fan.

The story goes (God bless an album with an interesting back story) that Dan Auerbach was burned out on performing the same Black Keys tunes day in and day out on tour. He went to his newly formed home and studio in Nashville and, to find some new inspiration, started holding "picking parties" at his place. He invited musicians, including those mentioned above (some of the greatest sessions musicians from Nashville), over to jam. It must have been a lovely time because he decided to make an album honoring the musical history of Nashville, featuring some of its living legends, in the best way Auerbach knows - perfectly catchy pop songs.

The influence and inspiration sparked at those jam sessions radiate on the album. You can practically hear the smile on Auerbach's face in songs like "Shine On Me," which also brings in some trademark guitar riffs from another Auerbach hero, Dire Straits' Mark Knopfler. There's the glittery pop of "Show Me," and the most Black Keys-esque sounding track, "Cherrybomb," which also features some interesting sports-jam type samples. The title track is some sunshine 60s pop that highlights session musician and Memphis Boys member Bobby Wood - who's worked with everyone from Elvis to Johnny Cash to Willie Nelson. Things turn a little more down tempo and gritty with the help of guitar hero Duane Eddy on both "Livin' in Sin" and "King Of A One Horse Town" songs that are perfect pessimistic toe-tappers.

Unsurprisingly, when you take some of the greatest studio musicians and mix them with Dan Auerbach - who I would argue is one of the best current song writers - you get an album without a thunker. Waiting On A Song is a shimmery, head-boppin' fun stroll showcasing the best of Nashville.

Resources


Dan Auerbach - Official Site

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