Ry Cooder’s first new album in six years The Prodigal Son and first for Fantasy Records, is now streaming on NPR Music’s First Listen. A masterwork of roots, blues and R&B, The Prodigal Son conjures our own history of the spirit, sounding completely fresh and contemporary, framed by Cooder’s expressive vocals and graceful, elegant guitar work. To Listen to the full album one week ahead of its May 11 release date, click here.
NPR’s Tom Moon notes there’s “big work Cooder is doing here — using earnest melodies from long ago to speak to the mushrooming crises, internal and external, of the present moment.”
The album’s 11 tracks include three Cooder originals along with a carefully selected collection of vintage blues, gospel and bluegrass by the likes of The Pilgrim Travelers, The Stanley Brothers and Blind Willie Johnson. Taken together, it forms an unflinching look at the state of play in modern America.
In addition to NPR’s First Listen, the new album has already generated early acclaim. UNCUT declared, “Cooder plays things both sides of the wire here; the sentiments may be righteous, but the clanging riffs that Ry and Joachim lay down is from the sinners’ side of the tracks, with all the visceral power of Howling Wolf.” And MOJO’s 4-STAR review proclaimed, “…his righteous anger is leavened with dry humour and wonderfully effervescent grooves.”
Leading up to release, Cooder has released a series of live in-studio performance clips that include the tracks, “The Prodigal Son” , “Everybody Ought To Treat A Stranger Right” and “Straight Street”. These live sessions, along with the mini-documentary “Making The Prodigal Son“ feature Ry Cooder on guitar; drummer, percussionist, and keyboardist, Joachim Cooder; singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, Robert Francis and saxophonist, Sam Gendel. The clips were filmed and directed by videographer Jeff Coffman and the audio was engineered and mixed by Martin Pradler.
Catch Ry Cooder on tour this summer in North America and in Europe this fall. For full tour routing and ticket information, please visit: RyCooder.com. Additionally, Cooder is set to join Rosanne Cash for Cash and Cooder on Cash: The Music of Johnny Cash , a special sold-out four show run from May 3rd – 6th, presented by SF Jazz at San Francisco’s Miner Auditorium.
Pre-Order The Prodigal Son: HERE