“This [album]’s not nearly as depressing. It’s a bit more celebratory,” Jason Isbell told Rolling Stone Country last spring, sitting on a couch outside of the Sound Emporium studio where his newest album, Something More Than Free, was recorded in four inspired weeks.
Nowhere is that celebratory feel more prevalent than on “Palmetto Rose,” a swampy, swinging rocker that takes an anthemic turn during every chorus. A tribute to Charleston, South Carolina — where, coincidentally, 400 Unit guitarist Sadler Vaden lived before relocating to Nashville in 2011 — the song has since become a staple of Isbell’s shows, even serving as the opening number during a recent show at the House of Blues in Boston. Slightly slower in tempo, “Palmetto Rose” takes on new life during the Boston performance, with Isbell and his five-piece band moving between the loose blues-rock of the song’s verses to a taut refrain.
Watch the black-and-white clip, filmed in front of a sold-out audience, above.