For half a century now, Ry Cooder has been creating and performing a delightful form of music that touches upon blues, country, folk, world music and straight-up rock and roll.
In a recent Rolling Stone article, Ry Cooder’s latest album The Prodigal Son is given a thumbs-up review. Having heard some of the tracks on this album, I can honestly say that Mr. Cooder’s new music is every bit as appealing and vital as it always has been.
Ry Cooder’s music is described more than once in the Rolling Stone article as being ‘roots music’, and those roots sometimes include gospel, bluegrass and Spanish influences. In the 1990’s, this artist helped to popularize the music of Cuba, when he worked as a producer on the Buena Vista Social Club musical project.
Known for his exemplary slide guitar work, Ry Cooder has performed with a wide range of other artists, including the Rolling Stones, the Doobie Brothers, Taj Mahal, Captain Beefheart and Randy Newman.
Although The Prodigal Son album is not as politically charged as Cooder’s Pull Up Some Dust and Sit Down album from 2011, or his Mutt Romney Blues work from 2012, this new album still takes aim at several social issues, with a dose of Cooder’s light humor. These include facism, changing cityscapes, climate change and exploitation of third-world workers.
It has been six years since Ry Cooder released a new album, and The Prodigal Son disc really offers a fresh, exciting and relevant sound. As with much of his work, even when he’s rocking hard here, Mr. Cooder’s music possesses a relaxed yet polished feel.
If you’re looking for a very good new album by an established artist, look no further than The Prodigal Son by Ry Cooder. Happy listening.