News / Arts & Entertainment

John Denver Tribute Links Musicians from Various Genres, Generations

FILE--John Denver is shown performing in Moscow, July 1, 1985.
FILE--John Denver is shown performing in Moscow, July 1, 1985.
Katherine Cole
Fifteen years after his death in a small plane crash and more than 40 years after his first hit, John Denver’s songs are getting a new lease on life. “The Music Is You,” is a new tribute that brings musicians from various genres and generations together to re-imagine Denver’s biggest hits.

The musicians include southern rockers My Morning Jacket, who cover “Leaving On A Jet Plane.” The 10-piece alternative band Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros reinterprets “Wooden Indian.” And multi-Grammy winning singer-songwriter Lucinda Williams delivers a soulful take on “This Old Guitar.” Williams says she was determined to make the song her own.

“You know, you don’t want to do a John Denver song and sound like John Denver. I mean, you want to show that ‘Wow, look how this song can be done,” she said.“You know, the more I got into it, I was really moved. I was actually moved to tears a little ... you can hear that in the song.”

Unlike some tribute discs, “The Music Is You” was not produced to bring attention to an underrated or forgotten artist. Denver was a superstar, selling millions of records, packing concert venues the world over and starring in hit movies. He was instantly recognizable, even when on humanitarian missions in the most remote places.

'The Music Is You': A Tribute to John Denver
'The Music Is You': A Tribute to John Denveri
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

Denver would have been 70 years old this December. Producers of the tribute CD hope that the new versions of old favorites will please Denver’s loyal followers while winning his music new fans.  Among the new versions on the release is Evan Dando of the Lemonheads singing "Looking for Space.”

Brandi Carlile, 32, grew up listening to Denver’s music and his writing inspired her own career as a singer-songwriter.

x
“I hope that people that love John Denver’s music will look at this album and its tribute as an honest to goodness inspired version of how we as singer-songwriters are influenced by John Denver’s music and by his lyrics and his life," she said. "I hope that they’ll see that none of us are trying to be John Denver, because that is a bar that no one will reach.”
    
Teaming up with Emmylou Harris, Brandi Carlile took on the daunting task of covering Denver’s iconic “Take Me Home, Country Roads” for “The Music Is You.” They’ve made it sound like their own song…that’s the mark of a good tribute.

You May Like

Jihadist Assassin says Goal of Tunisia Murders Was Chaos

Abu Muqatil at-Tunusi’s remarks in a propaganda interview also cast light on attack on Bardo Museum More

Russia Denies License to Tatar-Language TV Station in Crimea

OSCE official says denial shows 'politically selective censorship of free and independent voices in Crimea is continuing' More

Kenyan Startups Tackle Expensive Remittances Through Bitcoin

Some think services could give Western Union a run for its money, though others say it’s still got a long way to go More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
For Obama, It's More Business Than Friendships With World Leadersi
X
Aru Pande
April 01, 2015 9:09 PM
The rift between President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has put a spotlight on the importance of the American leader’s personal relationships with other world leaders and what role such friendships play in foreign policy. VOA's Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video For Obama, It's More Business Than Friendships With World Leaders

The rift between President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has put a spotlight on the importance of the American leader’s personal relationships with other world leaders and what role such friendships play in foreign policy. VOA's Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video Buhari: Nigeria Has ‘Embraced Democracy’

Nigeria woke up to a new president-elect Wednesday, Muhammadu Buhari. But people say democracy is the real winner as the country embarks on its first peaceful handover of power since the end of military rule in 1999. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Abuja.
Video

Video Tiny Camera Sees Inside Blood Vessels

Ahead of any surgical procedure, doctors try to learn as much as possible about the state of the organs they plan to operate on. A new camera developed in the Netherlands can now make that easier - giving surgeons an incredibly detailed look inside blood vessels, all the way to the patient’s heart. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Latin American Groups Seek Fans at Texas Music Festival

Latin American music groups played all over Austin, Texas, during the recent South by Southwest festival, and some made fans out of locals as well as people from around the world who had come to hear music. Such exposure can boost such groups' image back home. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Stockton Community, Police, Work to Improve Relations

Relations are tense between minority communities and police departments around the United States following police shootings that have generated widely-publicized protests. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Stockton, California, where police and community groups are working toward solutions, with backing from Washington.
Video

Video Indiana Controversy Highlights Divergent Meanings of Religious Freedom

Indiana’s state government has triggered a nationwide controversy by approving a law that critics say is aimed at allowing discrimination against gays and lesbians. The controversy stems from divergent notions of religious freedom in America. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Report: State of Black America a 'Tale of Two Nations'

The National Urban League has described this year's "State of Black America" report as a "tale of two nations." The group's annual report, released earlier this month (March), found that under an equality index African Americans had only 72% parity compared to whites in areas such as education, economics, health, social justice and civic engagement. It’s a gap that educators and students at Brooklyn’s Medgar Evers College are looking to close. VOA's Daniela Schrier reports from the school.
Video

Video Film Tells Story of Musicians in Mali Threatened by Jihadists

At this year's annual South by Southwest film and music festival in Austin, Texas, some musicians from Mali were on hand to promote a film about how their lives were upturned by jihadists who destroyed ancient treasures in the city of Timbuktu and prohibited anyone from playing music under threat of death. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin, some are afraid to return to their hometowns even though the jihadists are no longer in control there.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials Underway in West Africa

Ebola has claimed the lives of more than 10,000 people in West Africa. Since last summer, researchers have rushed to get anti-Ebola vaccines into clinical trials. While it's too early to say that any of the potential vaccines work, some scientists say they are seeing strong results from some of the studies. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Tourism is a multi-billion dollar industry in the Philippines. Close to five million foreign visitors traveled there last year, perhaps lured by the country’s tropical beaches. But Jason Strother reports from Manila that the country hopes to entice more travelers to stay indoors and spend money inside new casinos.
Video

Video Civilian Casualties Push Men to Join Rebels in Ukraine

The continued fighting in eastern Ukraine and the shelling of civilian neighborhoods seem to be pushing more men to join the separatist fighters. Many of the new recruits are residents of Ukraine made bitter by new grievances, as well as old. VOA's Patrick Wells reports.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.

VOA Blogs

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

New in Music Alley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On the latest edition of "Beyond Category" blues singer and guitarist Corey Harris performs with his band and talks about his travels in West Africa tracing the roots of the blues.