Uncle Tupelo, “Gun”

Jeff Tweedy is probably best known today as the leader of Wilco, the alternative rock band he’s been with for a quarter-century. And because of his Grammy-nominated work in recent years as a writer and producer with Mavis Staples, he’s more respected today than ever. In the beginning, though, he was a member of Uncle Tupelo, the western Illinois alt-country band that, though they weren’t the first, helped introduce a generation to what country could sound like if, instead of being watered down for the radio masses, it was infused with some punk and rock energy. One of Tweedy’s best-known solo writing efforts with Uncle Tupelo – though it’s usually, apparently incorrectly, credited to him, guitarist/vocalist Jay Farrar and drummer Mike Heidorn – was “Gun,” a cryptic breakup composition from the band’s 1991 album Still Feel Gone. In his new book Let’s Go (So We Can Get Back): A Memoir of Recording and Discording with Wilco, Etc., Tweedy talks about what led him to write “Gun.” “’Gun’ is the first song that made me feel like I was getting somewhere. It wasn’t a moment of divine inspiration, where the clouds of uncertainty magically parted and this perfect little song floated into my…

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