J.J. Cale To Release Roll On First Solo Album in 5 Yrs


J.J. Cale
On February 24, Rounder Records will release J.J. Cale's Roll On, the legendary songwriter and guitarist's first solo album in nearly five years, and his debut for the label. Roll On follows Cale's Grammy-winning, gold-certified 2006 album with Eric Clapton Road to Escondido.

Cale wrote and produced all twelve songs on Roll On, and plays all the instruments on most of the tunes as well, including guitars, pedal steel, bass, drums, piano and synthesizers. He tracked most of the album at his home studio in California. Among the few exceptions is the title track to Roll On, a previously unreleased collaboration with Eric Clapton, and the latest evidence of the pair's incredibly fruitful, simpatico creative partnership.

Elsewhere, Cale adds a few curveballs - like the scat-sung opener "Who Knew" and the jazz chords of "Former Me" - to his mesmerizing mix of blues, country, rock and other quintessentially American styles. The album is such a treat to the ears it's easy to overlook the amount of work that goes into creating Cale's signature "laid back" sound. He played most of the instruments on his landmark first album Naturally out of financial necessity. He does so on Roll On out of a passionate, meticulous love of the craft.

Eric Clapton recognized that passion a long time ago. Two of his biggest hits as a solo artist - "After Midnight" and "Cocaine" - are Cale-penned songs. Other artists who've covered Cale include Johnny Cash, The Band, Chet Atkins, Captain Beefheart, Santana, The Allman Brothers, and Lynyrd Skynyrd; while Mark Knopfler, Neil Young, and Bryan Ferry have all cited his influence. "He's a superior musician," says Clapton. "One of the masters."

Check out JamBase's exclusive interviews with J.J. Cale here and here.


[Published on: 11/20/08]

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PHISHPHAN69 Thu 11/20/2008 01:55PM
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i actually just watched the old crossroads dvd last night haha weird. gotta love jj cale if u love the blues. great songwriter

iwantstogetfunkedup Thu 11/20/2008 02:12PM
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I saw JJ Cale open for Phish at the Greek Theater in Berkeley in '93. That was one of the greatest overall shows I have ever seen.

PooDolla Thu 11/20/2008 02:15PM
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Hell yeah. Anything this guy does is awsome. His song Money Talks is one of my favorites. I'm definatley going to get this new one.

grooveholmes Thu 11/20/2008 02:23PM
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Having grown up in Tulsa his influences are everywhere. Jimmy Carsteen his old drummer, was a big influence for me and a friend. Jimmy still plays with bands around tulsa and is a great conga player as well. I was at the Phish show at Humboldt State in 93 when Cale opened for them. 93 and 94 were some fun years on Phish tour.

Dire46daysWolf Thu 11/20/2008 03:24PM
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loved the clapton and JJ collaboration!

Kramer2 Thu 11/20/2008 04:47PM
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Wow New cd from JJ. I hope he tours.

apgunter13 Thu 11/20/2008 05:10PM
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I was at the 93 Greek show as well. Mike got to come out and play with JJ. If I am not mistaken they did Cocaine. Mike looked beside himself. I also remember Trey telling the audience that JJ wrote all the songs they just heard and that the promoter got the order wrong and they should be opening for him. Oh yeah and Phish was awesome. Greatest silent guitar solo ever.

SnapHappy Thu 11/20/2008 06:43PM
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Good news... never heard a bad J.J. Cale album.

Hey Kramer2... I'm hoping for a tour too, he's about as elusive as they come. I missed out on tickets when he played Sweetwater and Bimbo's in 2002 but was lucky enough to catch his last minute show at Vilage Music in Mill Valley during that visit. He played a few songs with Christine Lakeland and there was free beer and BBQ ribs! Good times.

mcbacuma Thu 11/20/2008 08:06PM
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This is fantastic news! I was lucky enough to see him in Portland last time around. Unreal show... Very down-home. Hope to see him on the road soon.

Quinn1856 starstarstarstarstar Thu 11/20/2008 08:21PM
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Great show. My favorite part was during Call Me The Breeze, when some drunken a-hole shouted out "SOMEBODY GET ME A DOCTOR"... and then he transitioned right into it.

iwantstogetfunkedup Thu 11/20/2008 08:26PM
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Nice memory beansavi! I now remember that comment when Trey said Phish should have opened for JJ! Good times...

id rather be phishing Thu 11/20/2008 09:17PM
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Cale and Phish?! my apologies, I was a little over 4 years old at that time but ive been listening to Cale since I was younger, combine that with Phish, must have been a wonderful time. Would love to hear some more stories...Cale's music is some of the most relaxing bluesy music ive ever heard.

Natey starstarstarstarstar Thu 11/20/2008 09:27PM
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I was at the Greek as well....I was only 15 but I was into them and it was quite a fun time. J.J. Cale was great, but to be honest, people were not giving him the attention he deserved. People were funneling in and talking and with the acoustics, people's voices carry well(Phish even pulled acapella). Trey was a little perturbed when he made his comments on how he wrote all his music and they should be the opening band. He asked for everyone to give him another round of applause.

PUFNSTUF1 Fri 11/21/2008 06:44AM
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My first time to see JJ Cale was in 1979 at the Uptown Theater in Kansas City. I have a tape of that show and he played a fantastic Cocaine, After Midnite, and Tulsa Time. But his best song that night was another one he wrote that Widespread Panic covered.....Travelling Light. If it weren't for tapes I'd never know what songs anyones played.....after so many shows my memory is shot to hell.

Flat5 Fri 11/21/2008 07:06AM
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whats JJ stand stand for? I saw him in Montreal once and it was great. his drummer played what JJ called "almost drums" The guy was sitting on the floor playing drums that looked like they got dumped off the back of a truck and he just sat down and started playing them. it sounded great!

breadloaf starstarstarstarstar Fri 11/21/2008 10:48AM
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Big JJ fan, I love to play a few of his tunes. What a patient groove and perfect vocal delivery. He is a great example that music does not have to be complex to be good- it just has to be good. His solos are so simple and always super tasteful, right on the money. I think the general population has no idea that he wrote so many songs that others made famous. Mr. Clapton should buy JJ dinner every night for the rest of his life...

rainydayman starstarstarstar Sat 11/22/2008 07:05AM
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I saw him in 1980 and 1993, both times in small clubs. His genious is not so much the notes he plays, but the ones he doesn't play. His use of pauses and subtelty is magical.

breadloaf Sat 11/22/2008 08:59AM
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^^^well said and so true.

jimvrountree Sat 11/22/2008 10:00AM
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tour tour tour tour come to austin come to austin tour tour tour tour

futhepharmer starstarstarstarstar Sun 11/23/2008 09:21AM
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The album he did semi-recently "The Road To Escondido" with Eric Clapton is still constantly in my rotation. His is a much overlooked talent.

rainydayman starstarstarstarstar Sun 11/23/2008 10:12AM
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As much as I like JJ, I was disappointed with the Clapton collaboration "Road to Esco..." Maybe I expected too much but the tunes seemed too slick and overproduced. It's like they tried too hard to please. I'm eager to listen to this new CD.