Whistle Down The Wind, the highly anticipated new album from Joan Baez, will be released March 2 via Bobolink / Razor & Tie Records and will be available for pre-order beginning this Friday, January 12.
In advance of the release, the album’s title track is premiering today at Rolling Stone, who calls it, “…a moving reflection and summation of Baez’s life as a singer, musician and activist.” Listen to/share the track HERE.
Recorded over a ten-day period in L.A., Whistle Down The Wind was produced by 3-time Grammy Award-winner Joe Henry (Bonnie Raitt, Allen Toussaint and others) and includes songs written by Tom Waits, Anohni, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Josh Ritter, Eliza Gilkyson and more. Of working with Henry, Baez comments, “It was a hunch on both of our parts that we could make an album together. As it turned out it was a no brainer. We both work fast and were musically on the same wavelength. I work best with musicians who are as willing as I am to wing it and he assembled a group of players who did just that. Meaning invent each song from scratch.”
Shortly after her Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame induction in April 2017, Baez announced 2018 would be her last year of formal touring. “I’m looking forward to being on the road with a beautiful new album about which I am truly proud. I welcome the opportunity to share this new music as well as longtime favorites with my audiences around the world,” Baez stated. Her European tour dates will begin on March 2 and are now on-sale. An extensive North American tour will follow in the fall with full details to be announced soon.
The new music marks the first release from Baez since 2008’s Grammy-nominated album, Day After Tomorrow. Its release, which ignited an extraordinary decade of achievement for Baez, coincided with the 50th anniversary of her legendary 1958 residency at the famed Club 47 in Cambridge. Milestones over the past ten years include:
2009: PBS American Masters premiere of her life story, Joan Baez: How Sweet The Sound, which underscored the 50th anniversary of Baez’s debut at the 1959 Newport Folk Festival.
2011: Baez’ seminal debut album of 1960 honored by the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences in 2011, which inducted it into the Grammy Hall Of Fame.
2015: Library of Congress selects Baez’s debut album to be preserved in the National Recording Registry.
2015: Amnesty International bestowed its highest honor on Baez, the Ambassador of Conscience Award, in recognition of her exceptional leadership in the fight for human rights.
2016: Baez’s 75th birthday was celebrated at New York’s Beacon Theater in January, where Paul Simon, Jackson Browne, Emmylou Harris and others joined her. The concert premiered on the PBS Great Performances series in May 2017.
2017: Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame induction
2017: Baez’s first solo exhibition of paintings, entitled “Mischief Makers,” was presented in Mill Valley, CA. The bulk of the exhibit was subsequently purchased by the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria and donated to Sonoma State University, where it will eventually be displayed at an envisioned new social justice learning center on campus.
Baez remains a musical force of incalculable influence. She marched on the front line of the civil rights movement with Martin Luther King, shined a spotlight on the Free Speech Movement, took to the fields with Cesar Chavez, organized resistance to the Vietnam War, inspired Vaclav Havel in his fight for a Czech Republic, saluted the Dixie Chicks for their courage to protest the Iraq war, stood with old friend Nelson Mandela in London’s Hyde Park as the world celebrated his 90th birthday and, most recently, protested the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline at Standing Rock Sioux Reservation. To this day, she continues to stand passionately on behalf of causes she embraces.
WHISTLY DOWN THE WIND TRACK LIST
1. Whistle Down The Wind (Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan)
2. Be Of Good Heart (Josh Ritter)
3. Another World (Anohni)
4. Civil War (Joe Henry)
5. The Things We Are Made Of (Mary Chapin Carpenter)
6. The President Sang Amazing Grace (Zoe Mulford)
7. Last Leaf (Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan)
8. Silver Blade (Josh Ritter)
9. The Great Correction (Eliza Gilkyson)
10. I Wish The Wars Were All Over (Tim Eriksen)