Friday, April 2, 2010

Daniel Lanois

Daniel Lanois helped Bob Dylan create Oh, Mercy. They recorded it in a house in the Garden District of New Orleans and captured some of the vibe of The Crescent City. Whenever I listen to the album, it always reminds me of an Allman Brothers concert back in the early 70's I went to down in some warehouse near the river just off the amazingly named Tchopitoulas Street. The music was powerful and energetic, but there were these amazing moments of relaxation, lazy blues licks floating in the humid night. 

The main thing about Oh, Mercy for me, though, is that it's a touchstone for how you produce a CD. There's an amazing sound palette Lanois brings to bear in the arrangements that pull performances out of Dylan that are among my favorites. 

Lanois also writes and performs his own music. This video is of a song he wrote called "The Maker", as performed by Emmylou Harris and Spyboy. He's expanding and playing with the song form just like he does with CD production.

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