Haven?t Got the Blues (Yet)--or HGTB(Y), for short?is the 26th album in the long and illustrious career of Loudon Wainwright III. It follows his acclaimed Older Than My Old Man Now album??my death n? decay opus,? as Wainwright calls it, and 2010?s Grammy-winning High Wide & Handsome. In HGTB(Y) he broadens his scope with a 14-song, genre-bounding set (?eclectricity,? he calls it) dealing with varied subject matter including depression, drinking, senior citizenship, gun control, heartbreak, pet ownership and New York City?s arcane practice of alternate side-of-the-street parking. Uproariously rocking lead track ?Brand New Dance,? which evokes The Big Bopper?s classic ?Chantilly Lace,? is ?me moaning and groaning about the horror and embarrassment of personal physical diminishment in the wider context of the world in which we live today,? Wainwright states. Continuing this theme, ?The Morgue,? which Judd Apatow originally commissioned for Wainwright?s dysfunctional dad character to sing to Adam Sandler in an episode of Undeclared, finds ?death and decay meeting shit love,? he says. Likewise, ?Harlan County? was written as a theme song for the TV show Justified, and also like ?The Morgue,? was rejected. Wainwright?s version on HGTB(Y), however, features the beautiful vocal harmonies of singer-songwriter Aoife O?Donovan. The backup vocals of Wainwright?s daughter Martha, meanwhile, appropriately grace ?I Knew Your Mother.? Other cuts of special Wainwright interest include ?Man & Dog,? which was motivated by his dog Harry (the inspiration of other Wainwright ditties, including, he says, his yet-to-be-recorded ?Puppy Hate?), and ?Spaced,? a klezmer/Balkan gypsy-styled look at that alternate street parking theme. He takes a typically topical turn on ?God & Nature? (?A bit of Episcopalian gospel composed after watching the 2012 Vice Presidential Debates?) and his new seasonal favorite, ?I?ll Be Killing You This Christmas.? Wainwright notes that he toyed with the idea of calling the album Town & Country, then saw the cover photo of the famous forlorn clown Emmet Kelly, after which ?Haven?t Got the Blues (Yet)? became the title track. Another standout track, ?Depression Blues,? invokes such great blues men as Blind Lemon Jefferson and Sleepy John Estes, not to mention Shakespeare and ?old Sigmund.? Producing HGTB(Y) was Wainwright?s long time musical collaborator David Mansfield, who has backed him on numerous previous recordings as instrumentalist/arranger, including the 2010 Grammy Award winning High Wide & Handsome-The Charlie Poole Project. ?I got to know L?il Davey about 23 years ago, on a flight back from Vancouver?I think?to New York,? Wainwright recalls. ?I?ve worked on and off with him ever since, on TV, in the recording studio, and on the road. He?s been featured as a player and arranger on some of my best records including History, Grown Man, Last Man on Earth, and High Wide & Handsome.? Other top players grace HGTB(Y), and include ace banjoist Tony Trischka, saxophonist Steve Elson, drummer Sammy Merendino, bassist Tim Luntzel, and another longtime musical cohort, Chaim Tannenbaum, on background vocals. Born in Chapel Hill, N.C. in 1946, Loudon Wainwright III came to fame when ?Dead Skunk? became a Top 20 hit in 1972. He had studied acting at Carnegie-Mellon University, but dropped out to partake in the ?Summer of Love? in San Francisco, and wrote his first song in 1968 (?Edgar,? about a lobsterman in Rhode Island). He was soon signed to Atlantic Records by Nesuhi Ertegun, and was lured by Clive Davis to Columbia Records, which released ?Dead Skunk.? His songs have since been recorded by Bonnie Raitt, Johnny Cash, Earl Scruggs, Kate & Anna McGarrigle, his son Rufus Wainwright, and Mose Allison, among others. In 2011, they were commemorated by the comprehensive five-disc retrospective 40 Odd Years. Additionally, Wainwright has co-written with songwriter/producer Joe Henry on the music for Judd Apatow?s hit movie Knocked Up, written music for the British theatrical adaptation of the Carl Hiaasen novel Lucky You, and composed topical songs for NPR?s Morning Edition and All Things Considered and ABC?s Nightline. An accomplished actor, he has appeared in films directed by Martin Scorsese, Hal Ashby, Christopher Guest, Tim Burton, Cameron Crowe, Judd Apatow, and Steven Soderbergh. Wainwright has also starred on TV in M.A.S.H. and Undeclared, and on Broadway in Pump Boys and Dinettes. Most recently, he appeared in Soderbergh?s film Mosaic, and has been performing a one-man theatrical show, Surviving Twin, which combines his songs and the writings of his late father: Initially developed as part of University of North Carolina's Playmakers series, Surviving Twin focuses on fatherhood?both being a father and having one?and also explores the issues of birth, self-identity, loss, mortality, fashion, and of course, pet ownership. www.lw3.com Title: Liner Notes Subtitle: On Parents & Children, Exes & Excess, Death & Decay & a Few of My Other Favorite Things Pub date: September 5, 2017 Online listing: http://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/319142/liner-notes-by-loudon-wainwright-iii/ Loudon Wainwright III, the son of esteemed Life magazine columnist Loudon Wainwright Jr., is the patriarch of one of America's great musical families. He is the former husband of Kate McGarrigle and Suzzy Roche, and father of Rufus Wainwright, Martha Wainwright, Lucy Wainwright Roche, and Lexie Kelly Wainwright. With a career spanning more than four decades, Wainwright has established himself as one of the most enduring singer-songwriters who emerged from the late 1960s. Not only does he perform regularly across America and in Europe, but he is a sought after actor, having appeared in many movies and TV series. There is probably no singer-songwriter who has so blatantly inserted himself into his songs. The songs can be laugh-out-loud funny, but they also can cut to the bone. In this memoir, Wainwright details the family history his lyrics have referenced and the fractured relationships among generations: the alcoholism, the infidelities, the competitiveness?as well as the closeness, the successes, and the joy. Wainwright reflects on the experiences that have influenced his work, including boarding school, the music business, swimming, macrobiotics, sex, incarceration, and something he calls Sir Walter Raleigh Syndrome. Wainwright writes poignantly about being a son?a status that dominates many of his songs?but also about being a parent, a brother, and a grandfather. His lyrics are featured throughout the book, amplifying his prose and showing the connections between the songs and real life. Wainwright also includes selections from his father's brilliant Life magazine columns?and, in so doing, reestablishes his father as a major essayist of his era. A funny and insightful meditation on family, inspiration, and art, Liner Notes will thrill fans, readers, and anyone who appreciates the intersection of music and life. Loudon Wainwright III is a singer songwriter and actor. In 1968 he began to write songs and in 1969 recorded his first album. Wainwright has recorded twenty-seven albums, including his 2010 Grammy Award winning High, Wide, & Handsome. His songs have been covered by Johnny Cash, Mose Allison, Rufus Wainwright, Bonnie Raitt, and Earl Scruggs among others. As an actor he has appeared on TV (M*A*S*H, Ally McBeal, Undeclared), in movies (Big Fish, The Aviator, Knocked Up), on Broadway (Pump Boys and Dinettes) and Off (Hot Lunch Apostles , Surviving Twin). ?Mr. Wainwright wrings more human truth out of his contradiction than any other songwriter of his generation.? (The New York Times, Stephen Holden
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