In 1967 Bob Dylan took a break from intense public scrutiny and sequestered himself and members of his backing band (known then as The Hawks) in Woodstock New York. Together they recorded more than 100 tracks in secret. The Hawks later became The Band and the output of these musical masterminds gestated for 8 years, finally getting released in 1975, simply titled The Basement Tapes. Thirty tracks in total were released.
Fast forward to 2104. Enter T-Bone Burnett. With Dylan’s permission, Burnett enlisted an all-star cast of indie/folk/rock stars to write and record new songs using lyrics Dylan wrote during his 1967 basement sabbatical.
Elvis Costello, Marcus Mumford of Mumford and Sons, Jim James of My Morning Jacket, Rhiannon Giddens, and Taylor Goldsmith of Dawes all perform on the debut album Lost on the River: The New Basement Tapes. The album aims to do what Bob Dylan and The Band did in 1967 by recording The Basement Tapes in secret. The entire album was recorded in a two week span and filmed for a Showtime documentary: Lost Songs: The Basement Tapes Continued.
Here’s the video for their lead single “Kansas City” lead by Marcus Mumford and Jim James.
While the album has been on shelves since Remembrance Day, the documentary series premiered on Friday (Nov 21st). You can watch the trailer for the the series here.