Quite simply, I love Steve Earle.
A great songwriter and performer, with a social conscience and the conviction to speak out, Earle has had his demons, a la Johnny Cash.
Like Cash, Earle had his issues with drugs and the law, including spending time behind bars.
However, like Cash, that seems to have bound the singer to the working class in a way most performers of substance (not talking Toby Keith, here) might simply wish for.
This song, from the album of the same name–which happens to be my favorite of Earle’s catalog–just rocks it with words and attitude and even a sort of contextual prohibition sense of history. Did I say it rocks, too?
Earle has indeed produced a fabulous, and somewhat varied body of work, be it this early sort of alt/country rock, his work with Del McCoury, or his fantastic anti-Middle East war tome, Jerusalem.
It is high time we gave some space to Mr. Earle (and I don’t care what his friends call him!)