In Spite of Ourselves

John Prine

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In Spite of Ourselves Review

by Michael B. Smith

In Spite of Ourselves is John Prine's tribute to the music he grew up with -- good country songs written by folks like Roger Miller and Jack Clement. It is, at the same time, a golden opportunity for him to collaborate with some of his all-time favorite female vocalists. In the liner notes booklet, Prine tells the story: "I made a list of my favorite girl singers and the first nine I called said 'yes.' I nearly fell over." One of Prine's favorites is Iris DeMent, and her unique vocals grace four of the tracks here, including "(We're Not) The Jet Set," "We Could," and Prine's lone songwriting appearance, "In Spite of Ourselves," a song written for the upcoming Billy Bob Thornton film, Daddy & Them, in which Prine appears. Trisha Yearwood, Connie Smith, Fiona Prine, Melba Montgomery, Emmylou Harris, Dolores Keane, Patty Loveless, and Lucinda Williams all share the studio with Prine, creating some mighty powerful duets. From Freddie Hart's "Loose Talk" to Don Everly's "So Sad (To Watch Good Love Go Bad)," the album manages to create a seamless scrapbook of both old and new songs, artists and memories. Prine's duets are backed by some of the very best musicians available. Buddy Emmons and Dan Dugmore, two incredible pedal steel players, and Sam Bush, Kenny Malone, Jason Wilber, Jim Rooney, and Marty Stuart are just a few of the stellar players featured on the album. Overall, In Spite of Ourselves ranks as one of Prine's finest works, a scrapbook of country classics, interpreted by some of the genres best female vocalists, in duet with one fine American singer and a great songwriter.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 John Prine feat: Iris DeMent 02:36 SpotifyAmazon
2 John Prine feat: Connie Smith 02:29 SpotifyAmazon
3 John Prine feat: Lucinda Williams 03:47 SpotifyAmazon
4 John Prine feat: Trisha Yearwood 02:21 SpotifyAmazon
5 John Prine feat: Melba Montgomery 02:21 SpotifyAmazon
6 John Prine feat: Emmylou Harris 02:41 SpotifyAmazon
7 John Prine feat: Dolores Keane 02:56 SpotifyAmazon
8 John Prine feat: Patty Loveless 02:47 SpotifyAmazon
9 John Prine feat: Connie Smith 02:44 SpotifyAmazon
10 John Prine feat: Iris DeMent 02:11 SpotifyAmazon
11 John Prine feat: Fiona Prine 02:50 SpotifyAmazon
12 John Prine feat: Dolores Keane 03:31 SpotifyAmazon
13 John Prine feat: Iris DeMent 02:17 SpotifyAmazon
14 John Prine feat: Melba Montgomery 02:16 SpotifyAmazon
15 John Prine feat: Iris DeMent 03:33 SpotifyAmazon
16 John Prine 02:27 SpotifyAmazon
blue highlight denotes track pick