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John Prine

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Playlist: John Prine

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Adored by Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Bonnie Raitt, Johnny Cash, Margo Price, Bon Iver and countless others, John Prine will remain as one of the great portrait painters of his generation. He balanced creaky humor with a sense of causticity, embodying the everyday characters of his songs with a kind of humanity that might come with being an Army vet mail ...

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John Prine

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Title Artist Album Duration
1
Sam Stone
John Prine John Prine 00:04:17

Bobby Emmons, Organ - John Prine, Composer, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist - John Christopher, Guitar - Bobby Wood, Piano - Arif Mardin, Producer - Gene Chrisman, Drums - Reggie Young, Electric Guitar - Bishop Heywood, Percussion - Leo Leblanc, Pedal Steel Guitar - Mike Leach, Bass Guitar

© 1972 Atlantic Records ℗ 1972 Atlantic Records

2
Grandpa Was a Carpenter (LP Version)
John Prine Sweet Revenge 00:02:10

John Prine, Composer, Lyricist, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist - John Christopher, Guitar - Arif Mardin, Producer - Reggie Young, Acoustic Guitar - STEVE GOODMAN, Acoustic Guitar - Kenny Malone, Drums - Mike Leach, Bass Guitar - Dave Prine, Banjo

© 1973 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States. ℗ 1973 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States.

3
Lake Marie
John Prine Lost Dogs + Mixed Blessings 00:06:00

John Prine, MainArtist - Weona Music, MusicPublisher

(C) 1995 Oh Boy Records (P) 1995 Oh Boy Records

4
Angel from Montgomery (feat. Bonnie Raitt) (Live)
John Prine John Prine (Live) 00:04:16

John Prine, MainArtist - BONNIE RAITT, FeaturedArtist - Walden Music, MusicPublisher

(C) 1990 Oh Boy Records (P) 1990 Oh Boy Records

5
In Spite of Ourselves (feat. Iris DeMent)
John Prine In Spite of Ourselves 00:03:33

John Prine, Producer, MainArtist - Iris DeMent, FeaturedArtist - JIM ROONEY, Producer - Bug Music o/b/o Weona Music, MusicPublisher

(C) 1999 Oh Boy Records marketed and distributed by Thirty Tigers (P) 1999 Oh Boy Records marketed and distributed by Thirty Tigers

6
Illegal Smile
John Prine John Prine 00:03:13

Bobby Emmons, Organ - John Prine, Composer, Lyricist, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist - John Christopher, Guitar - Bobby Wood, Piano - Arif Mardin, Producer - Gene Chrisman, Drums - Reggie Young, Electric Guitar - Bishop Heywood, Percussion - Leo Leblanc, Pedal Steel Guitar - Mike Leach, Bass Guitar

© 1972 Atlantic Records ℗ 1972 Atlantic Records

7
Egg & Daughter Nite, Lincoln Nebraska, 1967 (Crazy Bone)
John Prine The Tree of Forgiveness 00:04:05

John Prine, MainArtist

(C) 2018 Oh Boy Records (P) 2018 Oh Boy Records

8
The Great Compromise (LP Version)
John Prine Diamonds in the Rough 00:04:55

John Prine, Composer, Lyricist, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist - Arif Mardin, Producer

© 1972 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States. ℗ 1972 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States.

9
The Sins of Memphisto
John Prine The Missing Years 00:04:13

John Prine, MainArtist - Weona Music, MusicPublisher

(C) 1991 Oh Boy Records (P) 1991 Oh Boy Records

10
Paradise
John Prine John Prine 00:03:14

John Prine, Composer, Lyricist, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist - Arif Mardin, Producer - Neal Rosengarden, Bass Guitar - STEVE GOODMAN, Acoustic Guitar - Dave Prine, Violin

© 1972 Atlantic Records ℗ 1972 Atlantic Records

11
The Oldest Baby in the World (Live)
John Prine John Prine (Live) 00:06:50

John Prine, MainArtist - Donnie Fritts Music, MusicPublisher - Big Ears Music, Inc., MusicPublisher - Bruised Oranges Music, MusicPublisher

(C) 1990 Oh Boy Records (P) 1990 Oh Boy Records

12
When I Get to Heaven
John Prine The Tree of Forgiveness 00:03:42

John Prine, MainArtist

(C) 2018 Oh Boy Records (P) 2018 Oh Boy Records

13
That's the Way That the World Goes 'Round
John Prine Bruised Orange 00:03:18

John Prine, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - STEVE GOODMAN, Producer

© 1978 Elektra Entertainment, manufactured and marketed by Rhino Entertainment Company, a Warner Music Group company ℗ 1975 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States.

14
Souvenirs (LP Version)
John Prine Diamonds in the Rough 00:03:33

John Prine, Composer, Lyricist, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist - Arif Mardin, Producer - STEVE GOODMAN, Acoustic Guitar, Harmony Vocals

© 1972 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States. ℗ 1972 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States.

15
Unwed Fathers
John Prine Aimless Love 00:03:30

John Prine, MainArtist - Sony/ATV Tree Publishing, MusicPublisher - Big Ears Music, Inc., MusicPublisher - Bruised Oranges Music, MusicPublisher

(C) 1989 Oh Boy Records (P) 1989 Oh Boy Records

16
Speed of the Sound of Loneliness
John Prine German Afternoons 00:03:29

John Prine, MainArtist - Big Ears Music, Inc., MusicPublisher - Bruised Oranges Music, MusicPublisher

(C) 1986 Oh Boy Records (P) 1986 Oh Boy Records

17
How Lucky
John Prine Pink Cadillac 00:03:38

John Prine, Writer, MainArtist

© 1979 Elektra Records ℗ 1979 Elektra Records

18
Come Back to Us Barbara Lewis Hare Krishna Beauregard (LP Version)
John Prine Common Sense 00:03:20

John Prine, Composer, Lyricist, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist - Peter Bunetta, Drums - JAMES BROWN, Organ - Steve Cropper, Producer - BONNIE RAITT, Harmony Vocals - Rick Vito, Slide Guitar - STEVE GOODMAN, Guitar - Leo Leblanc, Pedal Steel Guitar - Paul Cannon, Guitar - Larry Muhoberac, Piano - Tommy Cathey, Bass Guitar

© 1975 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States. ℗ 1975 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States.

19
It's Happening to You
John Prine Storm Windows 00:02:18

John Prine, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - STEVE GOODMAN, Producer - John Burns, Writer

© 1980 Elektra Records ℗ 1975 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States.

20
Christmas in Prison (LP Version)
John Prine Sweet Revenge 00:03:12

John Prine, Composer, Lyricist, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist - Grady Martin, Contributor - Arif Mardin, Producer - DAVID BRIGGS, Organ - Reggie Young, Acoustic Guitar - Kenny Malone, Drums - Mike Leach, Bass Guitar - Jerry Shook, Harmonica

© 1973 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States. ℗ 1973 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States.

21
Bruised Orange (Chain of Sorrow)
John Prine Bruised Orange 00:05:20

John Prine, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - STEVE GOODMAN, Producer

© 1978 Elektra Entertainment, manufactured and marketed by Rhino Entertainment Company, a Warner Music Group company ℗ 1975 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States.

22
Your Flag Decal Won't Get You into Heaven Anymore
John Prine John Prine 00:02:52

Bobby Emmons, Organ - John Prine, Composer, Lyricist, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist - John Christopher, Guitar - Bobby Wood, Piano - Arif Mardin, Producer - Gene Chrisman, Drums - Reggie Young, Electric Guitar - Bishop Heywood, Percussion - Leo Leblanc, Pedal Steel Guitar - Mike Leach, Bass Guitar

© 1972 Atlantic Records ℗ 1972 Atlantic Records

23
Please Don't Bury Me (LP Version)
John Prine Sweet Revenge 00:02:49

John Prine, Composer, Lyricist, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist - John Christopher, Guitar - Arif Mardin, Producer - Reggie Young, Acoustic Guitar - STEVE GOODMAN, Acoustic Guitar - Kenny Malone, Drums - Mike Leach, Bass Guitar - Dave Prine, Band Member - Raun MacKinnon, Harmony Vocals

© 1973 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States. ℗ 1973 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States.

24
All the Best
John Prine The Missing Years 00:03:28

John Prine, MainArtist - Weona Music, MusicPublisher

(C) 1991 Oh Boy Records (P) 1991 Oh Boy Records

25
Mexican Home (LP Version)
John Prine Sweet Revenge 00:04:36

John Prine, Composer, Lyricist, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist - John Christopher, Guitar - Arif Mardin, Producer - DAVID BRIGGS, Organ - Reggie Young, Acoustic Guitar - Cissy Houston, Backing Vocals - STEVE GOODMAN, Acoustic Guitar - Kenny Malone, Drums - Bobby Woods, Piano - Mike Leach, Bass Guitar

© 1973 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States. ℗ 1973 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States.

26
Fish and Whistle
John Prine Bruised Orange 00:03:13

John Prine, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - STEVE GOODMAN, Producer

© 1978 Elektra Entertainment, manufactured and marketed by Rhino Entertainment Company, a Warner Music Group company ℗ 1975 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States.

27
Spanish Pipedream
John Prine John Prine 00:02:41

Bobby Emmons, Organ - John Prine, Composer, Lyricist, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist - John Christopher, Guitar - Bobby Wood, Piano - Arif Mardin, Producer - Gene Chrisman, Drums - Reggie Young, Electric Guitar - Bishop Heywood, Percussion - Leo Leblanc, Pedal Steel Guitar - Mike Leach, Bass Guitar

© 1972 Atlantic Records ℗ 1972 Atlantic Records

28
Blue Umbrella (LP Version)
John Prine Sweet Revenge 00:03:30

John Prine, Composer, Lyricist, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist - Kenny Ascher, Electric Piano - Steve Burgh, Electric Guitar - Arif Mardin, Producer - STEVE GOODMAN, Acoustic Guitar - Hugh McDonald, Bass Guitar - Steve Mosley, Drums

© 1973 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States. ℗ 1973 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States.

29
Jesus, The Missing Years
John Prine The Missing Years 00:05:57

John Prine, MainArtist - Weona Music, MusicPublisher

(C) 1991 Oh Boy Records (P) 1991 Oh Boy Records

30
Summer's End
John Prine The Tree of Forgiveness 00:03:29

John Prine, MainArtist

(C) 2018 Oh Boy Records (P) 2018 Oh Boy Records

31
Long Monday (Live)
John Prine In Person & On Stage (Live) 00:03:48

John Prine, MainArtist - Keith Sykes Music, MusicPublisher - Walden Music, MusicPublisher

(C) 2010 Oh Boy Records (P) 2010 Oh Boy Records

32
Let's Talk Dirty in Hawaiian
John Prine German Afternoons 00:03:13

John Prine, MainArtist - Lucrative Music, MusicPublisher - Pink Sky Music, MusicPublisher

(C) 1986 Oh Boy Records (P) 1986 Oh Boy Records

33
Hello in There
John Prine John Prine 00:04:31

Bobby Emmons, Organ - John Prine, Composer, Lyricist, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, MainArtist - John Christopher, Guitar - Bobby Wood, Piano - Arif Mardin, Producer - Gene Chrisman, Drums - Reggie Young, Electric Guitar - Bishop Heywood, Percussion - Leo Leblanc, Pedal Steel Guitar - Mike Leach, Bass Guitar

© 1972 Atlantic Records ℗ 1972 Atlantic Records

34
The Oldest Baby in the World
John Prine Aimless Love 00:03:05

John Prine, MainArtist - Donnie Fritts Music, MusicPublisher - Big Ears Music, Inc., MusicPublisher - Bruised Oranges Music, MusicPublisher

(C) 1989 Oh Boy Records (P) 1989 Oh Boy Records

About Playlist

Adored by Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Bonnie Raitt, Johnny Cash, Margo Price, Bon Iver and countless others, John Prine will remain as one of the great portrait painters of his generation. He balanced creaky humor with a sense of causticity, embodying the everyday characters of his songs with a kind of humanity that might come with being an Army vet mail carrier with family ties to coal country Kentucky. Few others knew how to touch the heart with such empathy and humility.

Photo © Danny Clinch

John Prine in 10 Songs

by © Robert Baird

Much beloved in life and now mourned and celebrated after an untimely death, urban troubadour, master storyteller and folksy yet sophisticated ruminator on all things human, John Prine will always be one of the music world's greatest losses to the COVID-19 pandemic, passing in Nashville on April 7, 2020 at age 73.

"The Oldest Baby in the World" from Aimless Love (1984, Oh Boy)
Fed up with the machinations of the music business, anxious to take control of his own music and career, Prine and his manager, the late Al Bunetta, formed Oh Boy Records in Nashville in the early 1980s. The first album, recorded when money was tight, was Aimless Love, which was also his first collection of new material in four years. Not surprisingly given that length of time, there were some gems in this collection, headlined by yet another amusing yet slightly sad tale, this one co-written with the great and sadly late Donnie Fritts. Set to a slow tempo with a steel guitar crying in the background, this is an affectionate musing on an older woman who "would if she could/ And she should but nobody will," and who still holds out hope for love with Prine generously recognizing that "youth is a costume/ And the beauty within lies unfurled."

"The Sins of Memphisto" from The Missing Years (1991, Oh Boy)
Timing, often the key to life, is also the principle behind the success of 1991's The Missing Years. After five years of silence, Prine and manager Al Bunetta decided that a band record would be a healthy change, and along with producer Howie Epstein collected an all-star group including Albert Lee, Mike Campbell, Tom Petty, Phil Everly, Bonnie Raitt, Bruce Springsteen, all of whom had by then come to respect Prine's incredible body of songwriting. As far as recognition among your peers goes, this is the pinnacle of Prine's career. Happily, he had a batch of new songs—single efforts and co-writes—strong enough to showcase all this instrumental firepower and in the end win him his first Grammy Award. The sound is the most produced of Prine's career, with a more aggressive mix and larger overall sonic image. Mischievous is a word that has long been applied to the image of Prine that emerges from his songs. Here he begins with the chorus—a new device he was enamored with at that point in his career—before talking his way through verses which when read on a page are more of a word jumble than a coherent story. Listen closely and it slowly begins to sink in that instead of any grandiose voodoo yarn about making the same mistakes over and over again, this is just Prine having fun—a conclusion supported by Esmeralda's post-coital whispering in the Hunchback's ear, "Exactly-odo, Quasimodo."

"Lake Marie" from Lost Dogs + Mixed Blessings (1995, Oh Boy)
Among Prine aficionados there will always be a debate over whether Prine was better solo or fronting a band and here on the second of the early 1990s albums produced by Tom Petty's bassist Howie Epstein a convincing case was made for collaborators. With a large all-star ensemble that included Epstein, another Heartbreaker—keyboardist Benmont Tench, string virtuoso John Jorgenson, Marianne Faithful on background vocals and many more, Prine cut another strong band album headlined by this impassioned tale that like so many Prine originals mixes very specific autobiography, in this case a failing marriage, with the naming story of two lakes in Northern Illinois, but adds as a twist a double murder in a forest preserve. As incongruous as that all sounds, it works, thanks to a lilting, repeated chorus hook of "Standing by peaceful waters/ Whoa wah oh wah oh." When stuck for words Prine could always come up with a wordless interpolation to save the day. The song—with Prine talking the verses and singing the choruses—wrapped with this stanza: 

 
"You know what blood looks like in a black and white video?
Shadows. Shadows! That's what it looks like
All the love we shared between her and me was slammed
Slammed up against the banks of old Lake Marie; Marie."

As impressionistic, draw-your-own-conclusion endings go, this is a masterful mingling.

"In Spite of Ourselves" from In Spite of Ourselves (1999, Oh Boy)
Miraculously, neck and throat cancer did not take away John Prine's voice though it did lower its range, steal away much of its former elasticity, and add a coarse tone that the canny singer-songwriter immediately learned to use to add extra gravity to many of the treasures in his catalog. To offset these rough vocal edges, he wisely recorded a pair of duet albums with female singers, one focused on country music classics—For Better, or Worse—and his first release after surgery and radiation In Spite of Ourselves recorded before, during and after surgery. Not surprisingly, Prine's idiosyncratic voice was simpatico with another singer whose warbling can also be an acquired taste: Iris DeMent. Here Prine pulls out the stops on his gifts for the high/low art of rhyming such, uh, common pursuits as "sniffin' undies," "drinking beer like oxygen" and being a "wacked out weirdo and a love bug junkie." There probably isn't a better example of why Prine has fans of all ages, genders, education and income brackets than this hilarious and ultimately very endearing love story.

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