By JOHN DALY
Sheryl Crow has announced a new album of collaborations, her first collection since Be Myself in 2017. Will it be her last?
“I mean, never say never, but yes. I feel like this will be my last album,” she told iHeart Radio. “I’ll continue to probably do things here and there.”
She said though, that she will never give up on performing.
“I will always play music. I mean, it’s the thing that I know how to do. I would go crazy if I didn’t play music.”
In addition to The Rolling Stones’ Richards, Crow’s new album features collaborations with Joe Walsh, Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac fame, Willie Nelson and James Taylor. Additional players are Brandi Carlile, Gary Clark Jr., Jason Isbell, Lucius, and St. Vincent.
Sheryl said she chose her collaborators carefully.
“The people I chose to be on the record were just people that I have loved and admired and had relationships with,” she said in the interview. “Many of these people, I owned their records when I was seven and eight years old. I mean, I can remember unzipping the zipper on Sticky Fingers, and I remember the cover of Rumours and wanting to look like Stevie Nicks. And, who would have thought somebody, you know, a young girl from a tiny town in Missouri would wind up working with these people and having relationships with them. So, when it came time to make the record, there was an obvious list of people I wanted to ask. And luckily most of them said yes.”
She added: “Keith [Richards], it was definitely a go-to. Don Henley gave me one of my first gigs. Stevie Nicks, Joe Walsh, Vince Gill, who’s practically my neighbor, James Taylor, Kris Kristofferson, Willie Nelson, who, I mean, he’s my favorite duet partner on the planet.
“And there are quite a few young people that really inspire me and that I feel like are gonna go on and carry on the tradition of what we’ve all been doing, and that’s writing songs and playing. And that’s Gary Clark Jr. and Brandi Carlile, and Jason Isbell and Lucius, and Annie Clark [St. Vincent], obviously. It’s a long list. I’m sure I’m leaving people off, but just people I’ve loved and wanted to make music with.”
The first single that Crow is sharing from this new album is “Redemption Day” and features vocals from the legendary Johnny Cash. She said she got the go-ahead from the Cash family.
“He was a part of my music dictionary,” she said. “And then to know he and June, and to have a relationship with them and the family, it feels very sacred.”
“It’s a song I wrote in ’95 or ’96. [It] came out on my [second] record, and cut to 15-18 years later, June Carter passed, and the Carter family asked me to sing at her funeral. And Johnny called me after she passed a couple of months later and said, ‘I’m feeling like making a record and my son-in-law gave me this song and I’d like to cut it.’ And it was ‘Redemption Day.’
“He passed away pretty shortly after that,” Crow said. “The song kind of got pushed back and pushed back, and eventually came out, but it didn’t make much noise. And when I got ready to make the record and with what we’re going through, just historically right now, it seemed like a great time to revisit that song and grab his demo vocal and recreate it. So that’s what we did, with the blessings of his family.”
She adds of the song, “I hope that, to quote Carlos Santana, ‘I hope it moves the molecules.’ I hope people feel what the song has to say and that they feel the impact of his vocal on it and the timeliness of it.”