Album: Levon Helm, Electric Dirt, (Vanguard)

Dirt Farmer revisited. Perhaps Son of Dirt Farmer would be more idiomatic. Or just Son of the Dirt. Either way it continues the former Band singer/drummer's impressive return as the grand old man of soulful Southern-ness.

Larry Campbell produces again and the sound is dug from the same sod: funky, agrarian songs with grain. He kicks off with the Dead's "Tennessee Jed", tackles Randy Newman ("Kingfish") and borrows the arranging skills of Allen Toussaint. His cancer-ravaged throat holds up well. What's not to dig?

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