Discord & Rhyme: An Album Podcast

Discord and Rhyme is a podcast where we discuss the albums we love, song by song.

020: Robert Plant and Alison Krauss - Raising Sand (2007)

“What has been created in the chemistry of the three of us has its own kind of genre, really.”

--Robert Plant

Remember when Amanda said T-Bone Burnett is her favorite producer? She’s proving it this episode by walking Rich, Will, and John through Raising Sand, the unlikely collaboration between blues-rock god Robert Plant and bluegrass goddess Alison Krauss. These two found the common ground between their respective genres by covering artists from the Everly Brothers to Sam Phillips, and found their own beautiful sound while they were doing it. All of the musicians on this album are incredible, but nobody except T-Bone Burnett could have seen this project through, and that is why we love him.

Miscellany

  • Alison has always been very, very good at covers in surprising genres. One of her earliest albums with Union Station included a cover of “Midnight Rider” by the Allman Brothers Band, and since then she’s covered the Beatles, Todd Rundgren, the Foundations, the Supremes, and many others, and performed on tributes to James Taylor and Paul Simon. Many videos are linked below.

  • Led Zeppelin also did many covers, but did not generally care to credit them as such.

  • Speaking of Zeppelin, we didn’t really talk about them all that much in this episode, on the reasoning that most of our listeners are probably already familiar with them. There’s really nothing new to say about Led Zeppelin at this point, anyway.

  • Speaking of unlikely collaborations, Amanda talked briefly about Rare Bird Alert, the very good bluegrass album that Steve Martin did with the Steep Canyon Rangers. Martin has been a banjo player for ages (and is very good at it - the man is unfairly talented) and that album is excellent.

  • Peter Gabriel famously refused to give titles to his first few solo albums. When the record company got fed up and informed him that albums really need to have titles, he responded, “So?” Which ended up being the title of his next album.

  • Michel Gondry is a French filmmaker who, when not making music videos, is known for his unusual visual style. He was also one of the screenwriters for Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.

  • We’re not sure whether Sam Phillips was also in charge of selecting the songs that appeared in Gilmore Girls, but whoever it was did a fantastic job. Several of the characters were major music nerds, and the show was full of amazing songs by the likes of Sparks, the Pernice Brothers, XTC, and Sonic Youth. Rich has become obsessed with her music since this episode and particularly recommends that everyone listen to the albums Martinis & Bikinis and Cruel Inventions.

  • While working on this episode, Producer Mike noticed that Robert’s voice on “Polly Come Home” appears to have some pitch correction applied to it. This is very surprising on a T-Bone Burnett production, and it’s worth noting that they didn’t perform that song at either of the concerts Amanda saw on the tour.

  • Prior to this recording, John had never imagined a scenario where he would be the biggest Zeppelin fan in a group of music nerds.

  • Tom Waits also has an acting career. Amanda has never seen any of his movies but is told is he was very good at playing a grumpy prospector in The Ballad of Buster Scruggs.

  • Our episode archive is absolutely dominated by the 1970s. This is Amanda’s feeble attempt to show the other decades some attention.

Other links

Other excellent covers Alison has done

Discord & Rhyme roll call

  • Amanda Rodgers (host)

  • Rich Bunnell (moderator)

  • John McFerrin

  • Chris Willie Williams

  • Mike DeFabio (guest appearance)

  • Eleanor Rodgers (special guest star)

Raising Sand tracklist

  1. Rich Woman

  2. Killing the Blues

  3. Sister Rosetta Goes Before Us

  4. Polly Come Home

  5. Gone Gone Gone (Done Moved On)

  6. Through the Morning, Through the Night

  7. Please Read the Letter

  8. Trampled Rose

  9. Fortune Teller

  10. Stick With Me Baby

  11. Nothin’

  12. Let Your Loss Be Your Lesson

  13. Your Long Journey

Original artists

  • Li’l Millet and His Creoles - Rich Woman

  • John Prine - Killing the Blues

  • Sam Phillips - Sister Rosetta Goes Before Us

  • Dillard & Clark - Polly

  • The Everly Brothers - Gone, Gone, Gone (Done Moved On)

  • Dillard & Clark - Through the Morning, Through the Night

  • Page & Plant - Please Read the Letter

  • Tom Waits - Trampled Rose

  • Benny Spellman - Fortune Teller

  • The Everly Brothers - Stick With Me Baby

  • Townes Van Zandt - Nothin’

  • Little Milton - Let Your Loss Be Your Lesson

  • The Doc Watson Family - Your Long Journey

Other clips used

Alison Krauss & Robert Plant:

  • Black Dog

Alison Krauss:

  • Rain, Please Go Away

  • Baby, Now That I’ve Found You

  • When You Say Nothing At All

  • Take Me For Longing

  • New Favorite

Led Zeppelin:

  • You Shook Me

  • Misty Mountain Hop

  • Going to California

Others:

  • The Moody Blues - Lunch Break: Peak Hour

  • Tim O’Brien - The Land of Make-Believe

  • Webley Edwards - Alika

  • Venetian Snares x Daniel Lanois - Night Mxcmpv1 P74

  • Sister Rosetta Tharpe - Strange Things Happening Every Day

  • Robyn Hitchcock - We’re Gonna Live in the Trees

Songs we mentioned but didn’t clip

Led Zeppelin:

  • Immigrant Song

  • Dazed and Confused

  • Stairway to Heaven

  • That’s the Way

  • The Battle of Evermore

  • Babe I’m Gonna Leave You

Alison Krauss etc.:

  • Evermore

  • Down to the River to Pray

  • I’ll Fly Away (with Gillian Welch and Emmylou Harris)

  • Didn’t Leave Nobody But the Baby

  • Whiskey Lullaby (with Brad Paisley)

  • Ghost in this House

Others:

  • Ralph Stanley - O Death

  • Camper Van Beethoven - O Death

  • The Moody Blues - The Land of Make-Believe

  • Page and Plant - Most High

  • Little Richard - Tutti Frutti

  • Rhiannon Giddens - Last Kind Words

  • The Beatles - I’m Only Sleeping

  • Rowland Salley - Killing the Blues

  • Ween - It’s Gonna Be (Alright)

  • Rhiannon Giddens - Don’t Let it Trouble Your Mind

  • Sister Rosetta Tharpe - Up Above My Head

  • Rhiannon Giddens - Up Above My Head

  • The Ramones - I Wanna Be Sedated

  • Judy Collins - Both Sides Now

  • Joni Mitchell - Both Sides Now

  • Eagles - Take it Easy

  • The Dillards - There Is a Time

  • The Byrds - Eight Miles High

  • The Byrds - I’ll Feel a Whole Lot Better

  • The Everly Brothers - Cathy’s Clown

  • The Everly Brothers - Wake Up Little Susie

  • The Everly Brothers - Bye Bye Love

  • The Crystals - And Then He Kissed Me

  • The Beach Boys - And Then I Kissed Her

  • Carolina Chocolate Drops - Trampled Rose

  • Stereolab - Neon Beanbag

  • Ringo Starr - Lipstick Traces (On a Cigarette)

  • Wings - Rock Show

  • The Rolling Stones - Fortune Teller

  • The Strawberry Alarm Clock - Fortune Teller

  • The Merseybeats - Fortune Teller

  • Wayne Fontana - Fortune Teller

  • Wall of Voodoo - Mexican Radio

  • Pink Floyd - Brain Damage

  • The Beatles - Dear Prudence

  • Townes Van Zandt - Pancho and Lefty

  • Emmylou Harris - Pancho and Lefty

  • Willie Nelson - Pancho and Lefty

  • Norah Jones - Pancho and Lefty

  • The Presidents of the United States of America - Feather Pluckn

  • Doc Watson - Freight Train

Band/album personnel

  • Alison Krauss – vocals, fiddle

  • Robert Plant – vocals

  • Riley Baugus – banjo

  • Jay Bellerose – drums

  • Norman Blake – acoustic guitar

  • T Bone Burnett – acoustic and electric guitars, six-string bass guitar

  • Dennis Crouch – upright bass

  • Greg Leisz – pedal steel guitar

  • Marc Ribot – acoustic guitar, banjo, dobro, electric guitar

  • Mike Seeger – autoharp

  • Patrick Warren – keyboards, pump organ, toy piano

Credits

“Discord & Rhyme (theme),” composed by the Other Leading Brand, contains elements of:

  • Amon Düül II - Dehypnotized Toothpaste

  • The Dukes of Stratosphear - What in the World?? ...

  • Faith No More - Midlife Crisis

  • Herbie Hancock - Hornets

  • Kraftwerk - Autobahn

  • Talking Heads - Seen and Not Seen

  • Robert Plant and Alison Krauss - Rich Woman (this episode only)

You can buy or stream Raising Sand and other albums by Alison Krauss, Robert Plant, and their various associated bands at the usual suspects such as Spotify, iTunes, YouTube, and Amazon (affiliate link). Follow Discord & Rhyme on Twitter @DiscordPod for news, updates, and other random stuff. Follow Rich @zonetrope, Amanda @MagneticInk67, John @tarkus1980, and Will isn’t on Twitter - he done moved on. Special thanks to Rich for editing and Mike for production. See you next album, and be ever wonderful.

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