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In Spite of Ourselves

John Prine

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Album Review

In Spite of Ourselves is John Prine's tribute to the music he grew up with — good country songs written by folks like Roger Miller and Jack Clement. It is, at the same time, a golden opportunity for him to collaborate with some of his all-time favorite female vocalists. In the liner notes booklet, Prine tells the story: "I made a list of my favorite girl singers and the first nine I called said 'yes.' I nearly fell over." One of Prine's favorites is Iris DeMent, and her unique vocals grace four of the tracks here, including "(We're Not) The Jet Set," "We Could," and Prine's lone songwriting appearance, "In Spite of Ourselves," a song written for the upcoming Billy Bob Thornton film, Daddy & Them, in which Prine appears. Trisha Yearwood, Connie Smith, Fiona Prine, Melba Montgomery, Emmylou Harris, Delores Keane, Patty Loveless, and Lucinda Williams all share the studio with Prine, creating some mighty powerful duets. From Freddie Hart's "Loose Talk" to Don Everly's "So Sad (To Watch Good Love Go Bad)," the album manages to create a seamless scrapbook of both old and new songs, artists and memories. Prine's duets are backed by some of the very best musicians available. Buddy Emmons and Dan Dugmore, two incredible pedal steel players, and Sam Bush, Kenny Malone, Jason Wilber, Jim Rooney, and Marty Stuart are just a few of the stellar players featured on the album. Overall, In Spite of Ourselves ranks as one of Prine's finest works, a scrapbook of country classics, interpreted by some of the genres best female vocalists, in duet with one fine American singer and a great songwriter. ~ Michael B. Smith, Rovi

Biography

Born: 10 October 1946 in Maywood, IL

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

An acclaimed singer/songwriter whose literate work flirted with everything from acoustic folk to rockabilly to straight-ahead country, John Prine was born October 10, 1946, in Maywood, IL. Raised by parents firmly rooted in their rural Kentucky background, at age 14 Prine began learning to play the guitar from his older brother while taking inspiration from his grandfather, who had played with Merle Travis. After a two-year tenure in...
Full bio