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No Depression has been the foremost journalistic authority on roots music for well over a decade, publishing 75 issues from 1995 to 2008. No Depression ceased publishing magazines in 2008 and took to the web. We have made the contents of those issues accessible online via this extensive archive and also feature a robust community website with blogs, photos, videos, music, news, discussion and more.

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Author: Geoffrey Himes

The Long Way Around - Feature from Issue #37 Jan-Feb 2002

Kasey Chambers – Sweet Emotion

“This is a song,” Kasey Chambers tells the audience at Wolf Trap, “that I wrote about all the radio stations around the world who play Britney Spears and not me.” She chuckles at her own joke. The very idea of this Australian singer-songwriter competing for airplay and audience with the Pepsi commercial icon is amusing [...]

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The Long Way Around - Feature from Issue #33 May-June 2001

The Blind Boys Of Alabama – H A L L E L U J A H ! Yeah Yeah Yeah !

Clarence Fountain knows just how thin the line is between gospel and rock ‘n’ roll. A word here and a word there, and a song can leap from one field to the other. He and his group, the Five Blind Boys Of Alabama, were there when gospel first turned into rock ‘n’ roll. They were [...]

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The Long Way Around - Feature from Issue #31 Jan-Feb 2001

Rodney Crowell – Born on the Bayou

One morning in the summer of 1956, when Rodney Crowell was not quite six years old, his father rousted him from bed before dawn and hustled him into the back seat of a borrowed 1949 Ford. Three cane fishing poles leaned out the window of the jet-black, white-walled roadster, and with his chin resting on [...]

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The Long Way Around - Feature from Issue #30 Nov-Dec 2000

Los Lobos – Not Just Another Band from East L.A.

I’m going to write about East L.A. I’m going to write about the fruit vendors, the sewing women in the sweatshops, the smell of the tortilleria, the sounds that waft through the air on Saturdays from backyard parties, the Mexican music that was played, the dresser-top altars in Catholic homes. – Louie Perez, Los Lobos [...]

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The Long Way Around - Feature from Issue #29 Sept-Oct 2000

Amy Rigby – Just like a woman

There have been approximately 111,000 rock ‘n’ roll songs written about 17-year-old girls. Their names are “Michelle”, “Maybellene”, “Sheena”, “Sherry”, “Wendy”, “Amie”, “Carrie-Ann”, “Bernadette”, “Georgy Girl”, “Gloria”, “Little Sister”, and “Ruby Tuesday”. These girls are always pretty and eager for fun. They are unencumbered by jobs, children, or any challenge more severe than algebra. They [...]

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The Long Way Around - Feature from Issue #28 July-Aug 2000

John Doe – Border X-ing

X was the American Clash. During a brief window between 1976 and 1981, when the definitions of punk rock were still up for grabs, X and the Clash took the broadest possible approach. They didn’t accept the narrow view that only the new, the angry, the fast and the hard qualified. For John Doe and [...]

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The Long Way Around - Feature from Issue #25 Jan-Feb 2000

Marah – Street Smarts

Marah’s fans are not multitudinous yet, but the fans this Philadelphia group does have include some of the most respected figures in roots-rock. When Cary Hudson and Laurie Stirratt of Blue Mountain, for example, heard a tape of Marah’s first album-in-progress, the Mississippi couple insisted on releasing it on their own label, Black Dog Records. [...]

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The Long Way Around - Feature from Issue #24 Nov-Dec 1999

Sacred Steel – A joyful noise

It was a sunny Memorial Day, and as boats cruised up the river toward the spires of Georgetown University, a stiff breeze whipped across a temporary stage, perched on an outdoor balcony overlooking the Potomac River. Phil Campbell, a portly black man in glasses and neat gray slacks, stepped to the microphone, and said, “We’d [...]

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The Long Way Around - Feature from Issue #23 Sept-Oct 1999

David Ball – For the sake of the single

Just like St. Paul, David Ball had his life changed by a sudden revelation. Ball, though, wasn’t riding a donkey on the road to Damascus when the epiphany arrived. He was driving his car through South Carolina. “I was at a stop light on the Isle of Palms,” the singer recalls, “and Randy Travis’ ‘On [...]

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The Long Way Around - Feature from Issue #19 Jan-Feb 1999

Don Williams – Hank, Tennessee, and Don

In most cases, when you drain all the energy and tension from a song, you end up with easy-listening, middle-of-the-road pabulum, or perhaps pretentious, artsy twaddle. When Don Williams removes all the strain from a song, however, you get something else entirely. When Williams strips away the “look-at-me, see-how-hard-I’m-working” ego from the vocal, the song [...]

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From the Blogs

  • By the Time You Read This, It'll Be Over: A Pre-Newport Ramble
    Missing the first night -- likely the best of the three, given my taste and interest -- is sort of a bummer. But, on the other hand there's still two more days and nights to wander around the festival site, to hopefully discover a new act or the reinvention of something old. And, to be completely honest, the music and performances will run second to jus […]
  • Your Interview with the Jayhawks' Gary Louris
    A couple of weeks ago, we announced a contest to give away some copies of the Jayhawks' remastered and reissued editions of Sound of Lies, Smile, and Rainy Day Music. In the process, we asked you to pose questions you'd like to see Jayhawks founding member Gary Louris answer. Fifty folks entered and Jayhawk Gary Louris… […]
  • Lake Street Dive Motorboats into the Big Time
    The usual pleasantries open the interview with Lake Street Dive's singer extraordinaire, Rachael Price. There’s a mention of a shared acquaintance and a nod to the band's previous appearances in town, the first before a tiny crowd at Norfolk's Taphouse in 2011. "Oh, I recall," Price says. "That was a very memorable show." I […]
  • Chris Smither - Still on the Levee, A Fifty Year Retrospective (Album Review)
    I first heard Chris Smither in 1970. Not live, unfortunately, but on vinyl when picking up his first record I'm A Stranger Here Myself on the Poppy label, unheard, for the simple reason that it was Townes' label. I figured -- rightly so -- any label that knew what a talent he was could certainly be trusted. It did not disappoint. The album not only […]
  • No Depression Is Getting a Facelift: A Note About What's Around the Bend
    Ever since we announced that No Depression had been acquired by FreshGrass back in March, we’ve heard from many of you with questions, concerns, and ideas about the future of this website and the community that gathers here. We created a forum topic at that time so we could organize these comments and refer to them frequently, which we have done as we’ve dev […]
  • Vancouver International Folk Music Festival Day One (Jericho Beach, Vancouver BC - July 18th, 2014)
    A glorious run of unseasonably warm weather for a couple of weeks in Vancouver had me all but convinced that the 37th annual edition of the Vancouver International Folk Music Festival would see rain. We can rarely rely on the sun for that long in the Pacific Northwest, so it seemed like a sure thing. As it turns out I was wrong —… […]

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