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'Broken Hearts & Dirty Windows,' Various Artists 

Hear all your favorite indie and folk stars cover John Prine before you check out the real stuff.

click to enlarge Broken Hearts
  • Broken Hearts

If you don’t know about John Prine, you’re seriously missing out on some great music. A bunch of great bands have pulled together a tribute CD to turn you onto (in contributor Justin Vernon’s words) the “humble, heart-broke and beautifully playful” music of John Prine.

His 1971 debut John Prine is one of the great opening statements from a singer-songwriter. Four of the 12 tracks here are from that record, including the Avett Brothers’ take on “Spanish Pipedream” and Justin Townes Earle’s version of “Far From Me” — one of the most aching, evocative songs of just-missed love. There are two great ones from his 1991 comeback record, The Missing Years — My Morning Jacket’s “All the Best” and Drive-By Truckers’ “Daddy’s Little Pumpkin.” Both come dangerously close to improving on the originals. You’ll find Josh Ritter, Lambchop and Conor Oberst here, too.

Broken Hearts & Dirty Windows is a great introduction to Prine, but pretty soon you’ll be looking for the real stuff.

DOWNLOAD: “Spanish Pipedream”

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