Waxahatchee has released a cover of Woody Guthrie song ‘Talking Dust Bowl Blues’. The cover is part of the tracklist for a forthcoming album celebrating the American folk icon’s 1940 album Dust Bowl Ballads. The new album will feature contributions from the likes of Chris Thile, Lee Ann Womack, and Watkins Family Hour. It will be released on September 10th via Elektra Records.
The album, Home in This World: Woody Guthrie’s Dust Bowl Ballads, was part curated by Grammy-winning music supervisor and producer Randall Poster with the support of the Guthrie estate. Woody Guthrie is regarded as one of the most significant figures in American folk music, with Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Jerry Garcia, and Johnny Cash all citing him as one of their biggest songwriting influences.
Waxahatchee, AKA Katie Crutchfield, has released a number of covers since the release of her album Saint Cloud last year. In the autumn, the singer-songwriter teamed up with Hurray for the Riff Raff and Bedouine for a version of ‘Thirteen’ by Big Star.
She also took on Lucinda Williams’ ‘Fruits of My Labor’ recently, as well as Dolly Parton’s ‘Light of a Clear Blue Morning,’ and Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Streets of Philadelphia’. All three covers were included in a deluxe version of Saint Cloud.
Waxahatchee’s cover certainly breathes new life into an old classic. Her version of ‘Talking Dust Bowl Blues’ is slower and more mournful than the Guthrie original. The depth of Crutchfield’s voice, alongside the production style, leaves the track feeling warmer and more intimate than it does in Guthrie’s hands.
However, Crutchfield honours the unique enunciations of the original whilst managing to retain the song’s timeless appeal – hitting that sweet spot between new and old with perfect balance.
You can take a listen to Waxahatchee’s cover of Guthrie’s ‘Talking Dust Bowl Blues’ below.