Steve Earle Breaks Bad With “Calico County”

Videos by American Songwriter

Videos by American Songwriter

steve earle

While juggling a memoir, a fiction novel and a recent collaboration with Pete Seeger, Steve Earle, also found some time to wrap up The Low Highway. The new album, his first since I’ll Never Get Out Of This World Alive, is due April 16.

In the meantime, “Calico County” — a greasy slab of roadhouse country-rock — gives us a taste of what’s to come (listen here). Driven forward by electric guitar and a sneering verse that owes much of its swagger to Bob Dylan’s “Subterranean Homesick Blues,” it spins a tale of meth production way out in the boonies. Earle certainly knows his drugs, and he knows his rootsy rock & roll, too. In other words, this is believable stuff, sung by a rusty-throated man who’s spent some time with the desperate characters who populate his songs.

Who knows where the real Calico County is located, but we bet Copperhead Road runs right through it.

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