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2023 Albums Thing 221a - Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit “Live From Welcome To 1979”

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A recent addition and so here’s one out of alphabetical step for you today…

A 2017 Record Store Day (yeuch <spit>) release, a limited edition of 4000 copies worldwide, that today commands quite the price. Its USP (that’s unique selling point for those of you that haven’t been in sales as long as I have) is that it was recorded live, at Nashville’s Welcome To 1979 studio, direct to acetate and not to tape, so no fixing mistakes, overdubs or remixes, what was played is what you get. 

It’s a six track, what used to be called, mini-album made up of 5 cover versions of songs by the Rolling Stones (“Can't You Hear Me Knocking” and “Sway”), John Prine (“Storm Windows”), Bruce Springsteen (“Atlantic City”) and George Jackson (“Heart On A String”, a version of which is also on on Isbell’s 2011 album “Here We Rest”). The final song is one Isbell wrote for the Drive-By Truckers “Never Gonna Change”.

I acquired this recently in a collection I bought. I don’t know why I didn’t get it at the time as I recall I did get 2 copies from local participating record shops for friends, I just passed on it at the time. It’s an interesting listen, I do like covers albums, but there’s a bit too much fretw@nking going on for my liking. I know Isbell is a frighteningly accomplished guitar player but it’s the songwriter I’m interested in (yes I know, I get the irony that this is chiefly a covers album) so when he lets rip with the extended solos live I tend to zone out. 

My main interest in this particular record is Isbell’s fine cover of Springsteen which I present below for your enjoyment. A record for the completists really.

Atlantic City - https://youtu.be/sqNidJ-cbOY?si=A61d8V00_68Tna2Y

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