Cowboy Junkies Explore JFK Assassination on New Concept Album, Get Jason Collett, Sarah Harmer, Hawksley Workman, the Good Family to Guest
Published Sep 25, 2013Now that classic Canadian roots crew Cowboy Junkies have wrapped up their ambitious Nomad Series, the group are charting themselves into different conceptual territory via the new John F. Kennedy-influenced LP, The Kennedy Suite.
Due November 12 through Latent Recordings, the project is described in a press release as a rock opera "that tells the story of the JFK assassination through the fragmented narratives of a series of characters, each of whom experiences the tragedy from their own intensely personal perspective."
The Kennedy Suite is a collaborative piece that finds Toronto composer/lyricist Scott Garbe's work arranged, recorded and produced by Cowboy Junkies, with assistance from Skydiggers' Andy Maize and Josh Finlayson.
Though it's not yet been explained which figures will be represented in the historically minded narrative, the project fittingly features a number of guests adding separate voices and musical flourishes to the album. This includes Sarah Harmer, Harlan Pepper, Hawksley Workman, Jason Collett, Doug Paisley, Lee Harvey Osmond and the Good Family, among others.
You'll find the details in the tracklisting down below, where you'll also find the atmospheric slow-burner "Disintegrating," sung sadly by Cowboy Junkies' Margo Timmins in the role of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.
A stage production of The Kennedy Suite will take place on November 22, marking the 50th anniversary of the assassination of JFK, at Toronto's Winter Garden Theatre, with a follow-up performance taking place the next day. Many of the set's contributors will make their way out onstage with Cowboy Junkies, and the band will also perform a second set of older material each night.
The Kennedy Suite:
1. Prologue: Origami Peace Corps Mischief Makers [Performed by The Screwed and Hawksley Workman]
2. Bullet For You [Performed by the Kennedy Suite Singers - Ivy Mairi, John Timmins, Josh Finlayson, Scott Garbe, Andy Maize, Darcy Good]
3. Secret Spy Decoder Ring [Performed by Harlan Pepper]
4. The Dallas Youth Auxiliary [Performed by Jessy Bell Smith]
5. Take Heart (Elbow Room) [Performed by Reid Jamieson]
6. 26 Seconds (Historical Audio Collage)
7. Parkland [Performed by Lee Harvey Osmond]
8. Disintegrating [Performed by Cowboy Junkies]
9. When Will I Be Mine (Ruby, Ruby) [Performed by The Good Family]
10. Senior Prom [Performed by Doug Paisley]
11. The Truth About Us (The Ballad Of Lee and Marina) [Performed by Skydiggers]
12. Arlington [Performed by Jason Collett]
13. Slipstream [Performed by Martin Tielli and Dave Clark]
14. Reliquary [Performed by The Potion Kings]
15. Epilogue : White Man In Decline [Performed by Sarah Harmer]