“While Radney Foster is no stranger to the country charts, both on his own and with the duo Foster & Lloyd, there’s not much Music City/Nash Vegas gloss on Everything I Should Have Said. Foster’s songs are essentially country, but are charged with crackling Louisiana flavors and wiry, rootsy-rock a la The Band. Foster’s voice has a plainspoken quality akin to that of the late Levon Helm.” –Icon Magazine
“Like the songs of [Townes] Van Zandt, Foster’s music doesn’t jump up and down, wear fancy clothes, or beat around the bush. And like Van Zandt, Foster’s always trying to find that little piece of truth.” –Charleston City Paper
Radney Foster releases
vinyl edition of the critically-acclaimed
Everything I Should Have Said with Bonus tracks
Available for Pre-order Today In Stores June 9
Radney Foster will release the vinyl edition of his critically-acclaimed 2014 album Everything I Should Have Said, featuring three bonus tracks, on June 9. It is available now for pre-order on his website radneyfoster.com.
“I’m always trying to find a little piece of the truth,” says the Texas born and bred singer-songwriter. With Everything I Should Have Said, the truth is laid bare.
The two disc collector’s vinyl set contains bonus tracks, including the moving “No Me Preguntes,” “Something I Can’t Shake” and an acoustic reprise of the title track.
“No Me Preguntes” was born from Radney’s involvement in Songwriting With: Soldiers. “I wrote it with three veterans, one from the Vietnam era, and two from Afghanistan and Iraq,” says Foster. “They were all Latino, and I’m bilingual from growing up on the Mexican border. I knew if we wrote in Spanish, it might help them open up more, and reach a deeper place.”
“I asked them what was most difficult about coming back. They all agreed: ‘When civilians ask stupid questions, like ‘did you kill anybody?’ War is a nasty piece of business, and people don’t really want to know. These guys went and did their job, but it’s a hard job, and it’s not something they casually talk about.
I just said, ‘No me preguntes, (‘don’t ask me’), and it went from there. The English translation is: ‘Don’t ask me anything/Anything about the war/Don’t ask about what happened/I don’t want to lie anymore.’ We wrote it in both Spanish and English, and I knew I wanted it be Conjunto. That style of music was really born out to the northern Mexico/Texas Latino experience.”
The other new song on the collection is home studio recording of “Something I Can’t Shake,” a haunting highway lament he wrote with Bill Anderson. “Bill is a master lyricist. We’ve been threatening to write together for about ten years. Last year, he was hosting the Grand Ole Opry segment I was on, and mentioned on the air that we needed to write together. I said, ‘OK, all these people are my witness. We’re gonna find a date just as soon as I get off the stage.’”
The remaining tracks on Everything I Should Have Said were recorded at Dockside Studios, a little pocket of soul alongside the Louisiana bayou. The space is the site of a long-forgotten brothel, and far from the sterile studios of Nashville.
The sonic difference is evident right from the first track, “Whose Heart You Wreck (Ode To The Muse)” “The song is about the crazy struggle of inspiration, and we recorded it using a bunch of found objects,” Foster says. “The drum kit was made up of trashcans, a piece of angle iron, and a big gear plate.” Listening to the track, you can imagine the floor-creaking business that once took place upstairs.
Songs like “California” and “Holding Back” also benefit from the introspection of recording at a remote spot, while the late night groove is evident on “Hard Light of Day,” and “Unh, Unh, Unh.”
Co-producer Justin Tocket encouraged Radney to dig deep. The recordings were magic—fun, loose and lasting late into the night. Foster and Tocket intentionally chose not to over polish, preferring to keep the sweat and tears on the tracks.
Case in point, the album’s title track and closer, “Everything I Should Have Said,” which Foster calls the emotional centerpiece of the record. The song and performance are breathtakingly intimate, like he cracked his heart wide open for all to see, and yet somehow the sentiment is universal. The song is an unflinching apology for things done and left undone.
Considered an elder statesman of Texas singer-songwriters, Foster has been a friend and mentor to many younger artists on the Texas scene. He’s written and produced songs for and with Randy Rogers, Jack Ingram, Kacey Musgraves, Wade Bowen, Josh Abbott, Pat Green, Cory Morrow and many others. His songs are regularly mined by superstar acts like Keith Urban (“Raining on Sunday,” “I’m In,”), Sara Evans (“Real Fine Place,” “Revival”) and the Dixie Chicks (“Godspeed”).
Foster grew up in two worlds – herding cattle on horseback at his grandfather’s East Texas ranch in the summers and hunkering over a transistor radio in West Texas hometown, listening to border radio. That hybrid of influences may be why Foster’s always been tough to categorize; his first success was with the seminal country/cowpunk duo Foster & Lloyd, whose first single, “Crazy Over You,” went straight to No. 1. His subsequent solo albums told tales through a honky tonk lens and yielded enduring hits “Just Call Me Lonesome” and “Nobody Wins.”
In the mid-90s, Foster went through another turning point. In the midst of a divorce, remarriage and custody crisis of his young son moving overseas, he gave up trying to please country radio and recorded 1999’s See What You Want To See, an album that brought him to a whole other audience. Since then he has released Americana standards Are You Ready for the Big Show? (2001), Another Way to Go (2002), This World We Live In (2006), Revival (2009), and Del Rio TX Revisited: Unplugged and Lonesome (2012). Foster reunited with Bill Lloyd in 2011 to release Foster and Lloyd’s fourth album, It’s Already Tomorrow.
Throughout his 30 year career, Foster has continuously stretched the boundaries. “I strive to challenge myself as a writer, a musician and a singer everyday.” As his voice has deepened and grown richer, so, it seems, has his focus. These are the songs of a full-grown man, who long ago left fear by the side of the road.
May 27 – The Kenney Store – Kenney, TX
May 28 – Mucky Duck – Houston, TX
May 29 – The Kessler Theater – Dallas, TX
Jun 13 – Green Apple Arts Center – Eden, TX
Jun 27 – Gruene Hall – New Braunfels, TX
Jun 28 – Love and War in Texas – Plano, TX
Jul 9 – Alvin Live – Alvin, TX
Jul 10 – Brewster Street Ice House – Corpus Christi, TX
Aug 27, 28 – Main Street Crossing – Tomball, TX
Aug 29 – Love and War in Texas – Grapevine, TX
Sept. 5 – Lofoten Country Festival, Lofoten, Norway
Nov. 28 – The Franklin Theatre, Franklin, TN