.

Lucinda, Shelby Join White

Swamp rock legend's new album due in September

July 2, 2004 12:00 AM ET
Emmylou Harris, Lucinda Williams and Shelby Lynne are among the "girls" that swamp rock legend Tony Joe White has enlisted for his new album, appropriately tagged The Heroines.

The genesis of the album, due in September, was White's long-running desire to record a set of songs "both with people I admire and people who have recorded my songs through the years," he says. The set also includes White's duets with his daughter Michelle and Jessi Colter.

White recorded the songs with just his voice, guitar, bass and drums at an old sixteen-track studio built into his home. His son integrated ProTools into the system, allowing White to send the tunes to the singers to add their voices. "It's a good system we got working," he says. "We've blended simplicity and something from the Enterprise."

Harris came by White's Tennessee studio to add her vocal to "Wild Wolf Calling Me." "First time Emmy sang her vocal, I knew that was it," he says. "She said, 'I can do better and sang it four or five more times. I played her the original and she was surprised. She said, 'That's the one.' You know magic when you hear it."

Even in the vocal presence of the women, White says the songs retain the muddy sound that has been his trademark for more than three decades, most notably on the 1969 Top Ten hit "Polk Salad Annie." "That sound is always there, I can't get away from it," he says. "We get the swampy tracks doing their thing behind these nice sweet voices . . . well, actually, Lucinda gets down there singing as raw and funky as I do on 'Closing In on the Fire.' She's from Louisiana too."

After a European tour, White is planning to start making calls for The Heroines' companion piece: The Heroes. "This new record is just the first part," he says. He's already put together a list of potential heroes including Hank Williams Jr., Joe Cocker, French rock star Johnny Hallyday, country singer John Anderson and Michael McDonald. "I got several people in mind," he says. "And they all seem ready to do it."

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

prev
Music Main Next
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.

X

We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Vicious”

Lou Reed | 1972

Opening Lou Reed's 1972 solo album, the hard-riffing "Vicious" actually traces its origin back to Reed's days with the Velvet Underground. Picking up bits and pieces of songs from the people and places around him, and filing his notes for later use, Reed said it was Andy Warhol who provided fuel for the song. "He said, 'Why don't you write a song called 'Vicious,'" Reed told Rolling Stone in 1989. "And I said, 'What kind of vicious?' 'Oh, you know, vicious like I hit you with a flower.' And I wrote it down literally."

More Song Stories entries »
 
www.expandtheroom.com