Por Vida: A Tribute to the Songs of Alejandro Escovedo
Alejandro Escovedo may not be a household name, but the reputation of this punk agitator-turned-roots-rock pioneer in the musical community is among the best -- which accounts for the outpouring of affection on this disc, a benefit designed to help Escovedo in his battle against liver disease. The participants cover pretty much the entire waterfront of what's come to be called adult-alternative music, with Lucinda Williams bringing out the homespun dejection in the aging-party-girl paean "Pyramid of Tears" and John Cale homing in on the existential aspects of the crumbling-marriage tale "She Doesn't Live Here Anymore." While there's plenty of melancholy in these grooves, the set also allows Escovedo's brighter side to shine through, most notably on fellow Austinites Los Lonely Boys' fuel-injected version of "Castanets" and "Rhapsody," which gains a country-morning freshness from the vocal harmonies of Tres Chicas. Not surprisingly, Escovedo's extended family -- including niece Sheila E., who joins her dad, Pete, on a burnished "Ballad of the Sun and Moon" -- are well represented, but the degree of respect he commands outside his inner circle (so strong that the long-splintered Son Volt reunited to record "Sometimes" for the disc) is the set's second-most heartwarming aspect. The first? The guest of honor's own performance on "Break This Time," recorded just before he fell ill in 2003 -- a presentation that not only puts a face on Por Vida but also underscores the collection's upbeat title by serving notice that Alejandro Escovedo intends to keep on kicking for some time to come.
Por Vida: A Tribute to the Songs of Alejandro Escovedo 5 out of 5based on
More than 1 year ago
Hey, Guys, I just got this GREAT! New album called Por Vida. It is a Tribute to the songs of Americana legend Alejandro Escovedo, who is struggling with Hepatitis C. In honor of him, and to help him with his medical expenses, there has been this Great! new compellation put together by some of Americana's greatest artists. There are some really fabulous tracks! Some of my favorites are Lucinda Williams' "Pyramid of Tears", Calexico's "Wave", Los Lonely Boys' "Castanets", and Alejandro Escovedo himself singing "Break This Time". The album also has some other great artists on it, is for a really good cause, and is a must have!! Trust me!