The new album by Louis Johnson has got a physical form!
Louis himself ain’t no talker,yet he has much essential importance to share with his listeners on his album Old Friend. He sings about getting older, and time that apparently evaporates. In the next song, the title track, Louis takes up an even more direct way of expressing his vulnerability and puts things in a perspective context.
On this album he rightly dropped the nickname ‘Cowboy’. That relic from his youth, his rodeo time, might fool potential buyers. Johnson’s music has little to do with cowboys. The purest ingredients of country /folk are present, yet I wouldn’t label the music on Old Friend as country.
All eleven tracks are written by Louis Johnson himself, accept Is she your memory or mine, he wrote that one with no less but Mickey Newbury and Jim Pasquale. Everyone that knows his last album, knows that he carries his relationship with Mickey Newbury under his skin.Recording with Anthony Crawford, Louis laid the vocals and guitar tracks in Alabama and finished i tin Austin with musical support he found in such selected friends as Chris Gage (dobro, mandolin, piano, organ, accordion (and who knows what else), Ephraim Owens (trumpet) and Bradley Kopp on guitar, Phoebe Hunt on fiddle and a choir of Austinites heard in the gospel Standing at the Crossroads. From all what comes out of Austin, Old Friend belongs to the absolute summit. When I pose, this record can be compared to the material of Sam Baker, than it is not a statement to approve my euphoria, but only a plain conclusion. Old Friend is dedicated to Dan Leverenz, Larry John Wilson and Mickey Newbury. Is it to early to conclude this is going to be my number 1 album of 2011?
Dutch original: Rein van den Berg
Transcript: Egbert Meyers