Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2019-01-09
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  TODAY'S BUZZ

Ani DiFranco new album out in January
From a news release
2011-11-07

facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email


Powerful collection features array of iconic guests, including Ivan & Cyril Neville, Anaïs Mitchell, and the legendary Pete Seeger.

Singer/songwriter/guitarist Ani DiFranco has announced the upcoming release of her eagerly awaited new album. Which Side Are You On? arrives via the Grammy-winning artist's own Righteous Babe Records on January 17, 2012.

Which Side Are You On? marks DiFranco's first studio album in more than three years. The collection features 11 new songs alongside a radically reworked rendition of the classic title song, famously popularized by the one and only Pete Seeger nearly five decades ago, but no less relevant today. Backing DiFranco is a remarkably diverse line-up of stellar musicians, including members of her own crack touring band as well as such guest players as Ivan and Cyril Neville (of New Orleans' first family of funk and R&B, The Neville Brothers), avant-saxophonist Skerik (Pearl Jam, R.E.M., Bonnie Raitt, The Meters), acclaimed singer/songwriter (and Righteous Babe recording artist) Anaïs Mitchell, guitarist Adam Levy (Norah Jones, Tracy Chapman, Amos Lee), and a host of New Orleans-based horn players known for their work in such outfits as Galactic, Bonerama, and The Rebirth Brass Band.

What's more, Ani is joined on her stunning new version of Which Side Are You On? by the aforementioned Pete Seeger, whom she praises as "my elder, my forefather in folk music and political song." DiFranco was inspired to record the famed protest anthem after being invited to perform at Seeger's 90th birthday celebration at Madison Square Garden in May 2009. She contributed her own straight-from-the headlines verses to the song and has used it to close her own live shows ever since. The newly recorded version of Which Side Are You On? is a funk-fueled epic, incorporating not just Ani's band, but Seeger himself on banjo and vocals alongside The Rivertown Kids, a Hudson Valley-based children's chorus, and The Roots of Music Marching Crusaders, a brass band consisting of students from The Roots of Music, a music education program for at-risk middle-school students in New Orleans.

"All of my musical community, my comrades, are in there," says Ani of the cross-generational recording. Which Side Are You On? was co-produced by DiFranco and her longtime collaborator Mike Napolitano over a series of sessions in 2010 and 2011. The basic tracks feature two slightly different versions of Ani's touring band, recorded at Bogalusa, Louisiana's renowned Studio In The Country, Brooklyn, New York's Brooklyn Bridge Studio, and her own New Orleans home studio, The Dugout.

The album represents an extraordinary snapshot of DiFranco's own life as well as her sense of where the country stands at this particular moment in time. The long gap since 2008's acclaimed Red Letter Year offered an array of new opportunities, including a backlog of songs and the ability to painstakingly fine-tune new recordings. Many of the songs featured on Which Side Are You On? are reflections on growing older and being totally okay with that process. As she sings on "If Yr Not," "If yr not getting happier as you get older/then yr fucking up."

Elsewhere, Ani tackles some of the many crises that are currently confronting the nation and the world, spanning environmental disaster, government inaction, and a culture hooked on comfort and acquisition at any cost. Songs such as "Amendment" and "J" see DiFranco addressing these issues with a directness that is striking even for an artist long known for her activism and outspoken point of view.

"I'm testing deeper waters with the political songs on this album," she says. "I feel a little bit frustrated, politically desperate. After having written hundreds of songs over decades, I think, 'Now what? How far can I go with this? Can you sing the word 'abortion,' can you sing the word 'patriarchy' - what can you sing and get away with? I guess I've been pushing my own boundaries of politics and art. Seeing what people have the ears to listen to. How big is my mouth? What can I get out of it successfully?"

The last two decades have seen DiFranco staking a historic claim on popular music, spanning 16 studio albums and countless live recordings (including 1997's RIAA gold-certified Living in Clip), EPs, and compilation contributions. Along the way she has amassed a devoted fan following, received numerous awards and nominations, earned rapturous reviews, and basically rewrote the rules of the recording industry.

Now Ani's recommendation about the album's opening track "Life Boat" can be said to apply to Which Side Are You On? as a whole: "Just listen, drop your idea of who is singing and what you already know they're saying, and go somewhere else, open yourself up to a new story."


facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Midwest Action; Guided by Voices 2019-01-13
Camper van Beethoven members on coming out, performing 2019-01-09
Sinfonietta's MLK concerts Jan. 20-21 2019-01-09
10 questions with Vic: Rapsody 2019-01-08
Book chronicles local gay disco scene 2019-01-08
Ashley Simpson, Evan Ross aim to be new dynamic duo 2019-01-08
SHOWBIZ Gay wrestler, Black filmmakers, music festivals, Britney Spears 2019-01-08
New CSO recording with Muti available 2019-01-08
NUNN ON ONE MUSIC Bryce Vine grows into the big time 2019-01-01
SHOWBIZ 'Will & Grace,' Martina's flub, Nick Jonas, Aretha, '9 Months' 2019-01-01
Critics' Picks 2019-01-01
MEASURE FOR MEASURE Singing (and playing) in the new year 2019-01-01
Creative Minds Talks: Chance the Rapper + Renee Fleming event cancelled 2018-12-27
CONCERTS William Elliott Whitmore; The Runnies and Bleach Party 2018-12-26
Families of Chicago Banquet Jan. 5 2018-12-24
SHOWBIZ Queer As Folk, Kerry Washington, Mariah Carey, Hugh Jackman 2018-12-24
Bev Rage and the Drinks; John Grant 2018-12-19
WBEZ's 'The Morning Shift' host steps away 2018-12-19
Tanner releases new holiday song 2018-12-18
Jingle Ball Tour, Bright lights and kinky boots 2018-12-18
SHOWBIZ Batwoman, Janet Jackson, Carol Burnett, 'Deadpool' 2018-12-18
Cavalcade of Queens take over Holiday Land in Visual Album, The Holiday Dragtacular 2018-12-14
SHOWBIZ 'Rent,' Ariana Grande, Lena Waithe, Elton John 2018-12-11
Gay chorus, LGBTQ groups mark holidays 2018-12-11
Carlo Chappelle, born to sing 2018-12-11
Grammy Award-winning artist Common to perform with CSO June 2019 2018-12-10
Sinfonietta's MLK concerts Jan. 20-21 2018-12-07
Carlile, Monae, Lamar get Grammy nods 2018-12-07
'We Are Family' Pride Event to Benefit Chicago House Dec. 12 2018-12-05
Event focuses on revolutionary Cuban punk-rock band 2018-12-05
Elton John tribute show Dec. 8 2018-12-05
SHOWBIZ 'Handmaid,' Kristen Stewart, Hugh Jackman, Viola Davis 2018-12-04
'Stand Up for Red' marks World AIDS Day 2018-12-04
MEASURE FOR MEASURE Yuletide tunes 2018-12-03
John Grant weaves 'Magic' spell on fans 2018-12-03
'Santa Speedo Fun Run' on Dec. 8 2018-12-03
Double Door to reopen in Uptown 2018-12-03
Red Bull festival features LGBT talent 2018-12-01
SnowGirls, The Musical 2018-11-28
City Winery's December shows: Macy Gray, more 2018-11-28
 



Copyright © 2019 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Submit an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.