Review of Rodney Crowell – Tarpaper Sky (New West / Warner Music Canada)

Rodney CrowellAfter last year’s delightful recorded outing with Emmylou Harris, Rodney Crowell must be feeling a little nostalgic. How else could you explain him reconvening his Diamonds & Dust­-era band for Tarpaper Sky? Whatever the reason, the end result is wonderful. His newest album doesn’t venture into new territory as much as it relies upon Crowell’s outstandingly diverse songwriting ability. God I’m Missing You and I Wouldn’t Be Me Without You are two of the more reflective moments on the record but it’s not all so serious: Frankie Please is a fun homage to rockabilly while Jesus Talk To Mama sees Crowell tip his hat to the likes Marty Stuart and Dwight Yoakam.