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Justin Townes Earle

In some respects, Justin Townes Earle seemed destined from birth to be a musician -- his father, Steve Earle, is one of America's most acclaimed singer/songwriters, and he was named in part for Townes Van Zandt, a close friend to Earle and an equally legendary tunesmith. But Justin also grew up learning the downside of the musician's life, and came up against some of the same demons that haunted his father. Born in 1982, Justin Townes Earle didn't see much of his dad through most of his childhood; after the release of his first album in 1986, Steve was often on the road, and a serious drug habit sidelined him through much of the early '90s. Despite it all, Justin developed an appetite for music, and in his teens began playing and singing with two different Nashville groups, a rock band called the Distributors and a bluegrass-influenced acoustic combo, the Swindlers. Justin also spent some time as a member of his father's touring band the Dukes, and sang one of his own songs, "The Time You Waste," on Steve's 2003 live album Just an American Boy. But Justin was fired from the Dukes after a dangerous appetite for drugs began interfering with his performances, and Justin told a Los Angeles Times reporter that he suffered his fifth major drug overdose, one that put him in the hospital for several days, when he was only 21. But that misadventure put Justin on the road to recovery, and once clean and sober he began putting a new focus on his music and songwriting. In 2007, Justin unveiled a critically acclaimed EP, Yuma, on his own J-Trane Music label, and later that year he signed with the respected "insurgent country" label Bloodshot, which released his debut album, The Good Life, on March 25, 2008. He followed it with Midnight at the Movies in 2009 and Harlem River Blues in 2010. While touring in support of Harlem River Blues, Earle was involved in an altercation with a club owner after a show in Indianapolis, Indiana, which led to a brief stay in jail and a return to rehab for alcohol issues. Since then, Earle has reportedly been clean and sober, and continued to record and tour steadily. In 2012, Earle released the album Nothing's Gonna Change the Way You Feel About Me Now, and dipped his toes into production, working behind the board on Unfinished Business, an album by pioneering rockabilly singer Wanda Jackson. After Earle's contract with Bloodshot had run its course, he signed a deal with Communion Records, a U.K. label owned in part by Ben Lovett of Mumford & Sons, but the deal soon turned into a war of words between Earle and the label's A&R staff, with Earle frequently posting angry messages on Twitter about his dealings with the company. In 2014, Earle finally re-emerged with a new album, Single Mothers, which was released by the American independent label Vagrant Records. Single Mothers was recorded in tandem with a companion album, Absent Fathers, but rather than release them together, Earle decided the two sets of songs would be more powerful as separate works, and Absent Fathers arrived in January 2015. In 2017, Earle released the album Kids in the Street, his first for the respected independent label New West Records. He supported the release with a concert tour in tandem with the celebrated Canadian group the Sadies, who served as his opening act as well as his backing band. ~ Mark Deming
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Stations Featuring
Justin Townes Earle


    19 songs


    5 songs

    Outlaw Country

    Outlaw Country
    1 song

    Alt Country

    Alt Country
    2 songs

Albums by
Justin Townes Earle

Top Songs by
Justin Townes Earle

  1.   Song
  2.   Christchurch Woman
  3.   Look the Other Way
  4.   Harlem River Blues
  5.   Maybe Baby
  6.   Nothing's Gonna Change the Way You Feel About Me Now
  7.   Lone Pine Hill
  8.   They Killed John Henry
  9.   Movin' On
  10.   Turn out My Lights
  11.   Slippin' and Slidin
  12.   Champagne Corolla
  13.   Who Am I to Say
  14.   Round the Bend
  15.   Can't Hardly Wait
  16.   Move Over Mama
  17.   What Do You Do When You're Lonesome
  18.   Won't Be the Last Time
  19.   Wanderin'
  20.   Ain't Waitin'
  21.   Poor Fool
  22.   Hard Livin'
  23.   Unfortunately, Anna
  24.   Here We Go Again
  25.   Mama's Eyes
  26.   Am I That Lonely Tonight?
  27.   Memphis in the Rain
  28.   Baby's Got a Bad Idea
  29.   Down on the Lower East Side
  30.   Trouble Is
  31.   Someday I'll Be Forgiven for This
  32.   Do Lord
  33.   Least I Got the Blues
  34.   Yuma
  35.   What's Goin' Wrong
  36.   Maybe a Moment
  37.   Looking for a Place to Land
  38.   Someone Will Pay
  39.   Slow Monday
  40.   When the One You Love Loses Faith
  41.   Day and Night
  42.   Call Ya Momma
  43.   Why
  44.   Farther From Me
  45.   Today and a Lonely Night
  46.   Single Mothers
  47.   Time Shows Fools
  48.   Maria
  49.   Workin' for the Mta
  50.   Dirty Rag
  51.   Black Eyed Suzy
  52.   Ain't Glad I'm Leaving
  53.   Lonesome and You
  54.   Let the Waters Rise
  55.   I Don't Care
  56.   Rogers Park
  57.   White Gardenias
  58.   What's She Crying For
  59.   A Desolate Angels Blues
  60.   Graceland
  61.   The Good Life
  62.   One More Night in Brooklyn
  63.   The Ghost of Virginia
  64.   If I Was the Devil
  65.   Same Old Stagolee
  66.   Short Hair Woman
  67.   15-25
  68.   There Go a Fool
  69.   Glory Days
  70.   Burning Pictures
  71.   It's Cold in This House
  72.   Wanna Be a Stranger
  73.   Picture in a Drawer
  74.   Worried Bout the Weather
  75.   Learning to Cry
  76.   What I Mean to You
  77.   Walk Out
  78.   Midnight at the Movies
  79.   You Can't Leave
  80.   South Georgia Sugar Babe
  81.   Far Away in Another Town
  82.   My Baby Drives
  83.   Faded Valentine
  84.   Halfway to Jackson
  85.   Kids in the Street
  86.   Down in the Valley