Steve Earle :: Ghosts Of West Virginia  

Steve Earle maakte het afgelopen decennium veel goede muziek, maar nimmer brandde het heilig vuur zo fel als op Ghosts Of West Virginia. Van de gospel-opener Heaven Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere tot de ontroerende afsluiter The Mine, in elke noot van Earle en zijn Dukes zit een hart en een ziel. Rode draad van de plaat is de explosie van de Upper Big Branch-mijn in 2010, waarbij 29 mannen om het leven kwamen. Sommige nummers schreef hij voor het theaterstuk Coal Country, de rest kwam er later bij. Gospel, country, bluegrass, folk en rock, het komt allemaal voorbij. In het jaar dat Steve Earle 65 is geworden en waarin hij het gehoor in één oor verloor, levert hij een van de allerbeste albums uit zijn lange en rijke carrière af.

Ghosts of West Virginia centers on the Upper Big Branch coal mine explosion that killed twenty-nine men in that state in 2010, making it one of the worst mining disasters in American history.  When asked about what drove him to craft his deeply evocative new album, Steve Earle says, “I thought that, given the way things are now, it was maybe my responsibility to make a record that spoke to and for people who didn’t vote the way that I did,” he says. “One of the dangers that we’re in is if people like me keep thinking that everybody who voted for Trump is a racist or an asshole, then we’re fucked, because it’s simply not true. So this is one move toward something that might take a generation to change. I wanted to do something where that dialogue could begin.”
In ten deftly drawn, roughly eloquent, powerfully conveyed sonic portraits, Earle and his long-time band the Dukes explore the historical role of coal in rural communities. More than merely a question of jobs and income, mining has provided a sense of unity and meaning, patriotic pride and purpose.
“I said I wanted to speak to people that didn’t necessarily vote the way that I did,” he says, “but that doesn’t mean we don’t have anything in common. We need to learn how to communicate with each other. My involvement in this project is my little contribution to that effort. And the way to do that – and to do it impeccably – is simply to honor those guys who died at Upper Big Branch.

NEW YORK, NY – December 14, 2019 – Steve Earle and the Dukes, Electric Lady Studios.

Heaven Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere
Union, God and Country
Devil Put the Coal in the Ground
John Henry was a Steel Drivin’ Man
Time is Never on Our Side
It’s About Blood
If I Could See Your Face Again
Black Lung
Fastest Man Alive
The Mine





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