Even before Bonnie Raitt took home the Grammy for Song of the Year on Feb. 5, she was a decades-long hitmaker. And before that, she was an in-demand session musician, collaborating with other artists on their own hits.
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Raitt had her hand in many projects across throughout her career, from Little Feat and James Taylor to Willie Nelson and Jackson Brown. Here we will dive into 10 legendary albums you didn’t know featured the “Something to Talk About” singer.
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1. Dixie Chicken – Little Feat
Raitt lends her voice to Little Feat’s 1973 album, Dixie Chicken. Her husky wail can also be heard on several of the rock band’s other releases like Feats Don’t Fail Me Now, Down on the Farm, Let It Roll, and many more.
2. The Missing Years – John Prine
A long-time John Prine collaborator, Raitt is featured on his tenth studio release, The Missing Years. She was featured on the track, “Unlonely,” and provided backing vocals throughout.
3. That’s a Plenty – The Pointer Sisters
Raitt’s voice is not her only talent in demand. She assisted The Pointer Sisters on their 1974 album, That’s a Plenty, playing slide guitar on the tune “Grinning in Your Face.”
4. Warren Zevon – Warren Zevon
Raitt provided harmonies to the Warren Zevon song “Join Me in L.A.” for his self-titled sophomore release. Raitt is in good company on the album, sharing credits with the likes of Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham, Don Henley, Glenn Frey, Jackson Browne, and so many more hitmakers.
5. In the Pocket – James Taylor
Raitt appears on another star-studded album, James Taylor’s 1976 LP In the Pocket. She provided backing vocals to the song “Family Man” as other tracks were harmonized by Stevie Wonder, David Crosby, Linda Ronstadt, and several other musical colleagues.
6. Bluebird – Emmylou Harris
Emmylou Harris’ 1989 album, Bluebird, saw Raitt’s vocal stylings and her slide guitar skills, especially when it comes to the track “Icy Blue Heart.”
7. The Distance – Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band
Raitt’s backing vocals elevate Bob Seger’s 1982 album, The Distance. She can be heard on the tune, “Makin’ Thunderbirds.” Glenn Frey also offers vocal assistance to the record.
8. Across the Borderline – Willie Nelson
Raitt duets with Willie Nelson on the song “Getting Over You” from his album Across the Borderline. On harmonies and slide guitar, she’s a force alongside other famed backups featured on the album, like Paul Simon, Bob Dylan, Kris Kristofferson, and even Sinéad O’Connor.
9. Taking the Long Way – The Chicks
Another album in which she’s in good company, The Chick’s Taking the Long Way features Raitt on background vocals, as well as sees assistance from John Mayer and Benmont Tench.
10. For Everyman – Jackson Browne
Raitt lends her voice to Jackson Brown’s 1973 release, For Everyman. She can be heard on the track, “The Times You’ve Come.” Other guests on the album include David Crosby, Glenn Frey, Elton John, Don Henley, and Joni Mitchell.
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Raitt’s musical assistance can be found in other projects of Browne’s, including his album The Pretender.
Photo by Gijsbert Hanekroot/Redferns