News & Reviews
Los Angeles Times - Jackson Browne, an old pro with a fresh perspective
On Oct. 7 Jackson Browne will release a strong new studio album called 'Standing in the Breach'
On a recent evening at a North Hollywood rehearsal studio, Jackson Browne was leading his band through his song "About My Imagination" when he raised his hand to halt the musicians. The ensemble included some new members, and though Browne had loved the energy they'd brought to the tune earlier in the practice (during their initial crack at it), now the veteran singer-songwriter feared the freshness had worn off. The music, he said to the players as he peered over his eyeglasses, was beginning to feel too familiar.
"I want to sidestep the pitfall of getting involved in doing something we've done before," he told them.
Nobody's getting paid much anymore, so people are just getting together for the love of it. - Jackson Browne
That sentiment goes some way toward capturing Browne's broader outlook, more than 40 years after he established a foothold in the record business, first with songs he wrote or co-wrote for acts such as Nico ("These Days") and the Eagles ("Take It Easy"), then as a solo artist in Los Angeles alongside James Taylor and Linda Ronstadt. The 65-year-old peppers his concerts like those making up the fall tour he was preparing for this month with the hits that turned him into a soft-rock superstar: "Doctor My Eyes," "The Pretender," "Running on Empty."
But Browne is still creating.
On Oct. 7 he'll release a strong new studio album called "Standing in the Breach," with sensitive yet crafty meditations on romance, mortality and what he views as the greed and apathy threatening the environment and the lives of impoverished people in places like Haiti, whose devastating 2010 earthquake served as the basis for the disc's moving title track. . .