E Street Band/Crazy Horse guitarist Nils Lofgren gets a hand from some A-list names on Mountains, a new solo album due July 21. Beyond the first single “Ain’t the Truth Enough,” which features Ringo Starr on drums, the project boasts contributions from Neil Young and the late David Crosby, as well as vocalist Cindy Mizelle, 85-year-old jazz bassist Ron Carter, and the Howard Gospel Choir.
Lofgren says “Ain’t the Truth Enough” was influenced by the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol Building and was written in open-G tuning on a Martin D-35 acoustic guitar given to him by late actor James Caan. “I felt I had to go deep and with the global war on women, and man’s deadly epidemic of lies and spin for money and power, I imagined a fierce, loving mother and wife dealing with a husband recently home from the insurrection,” he says of the song.
Lofgren challenged himself to write material for Mountains more quickly than on prior solo efforts, and admits it was “freeing to work without any restrictions — to just write whatever came out. It turned into some of the most inspired work I think I’ve ever made.”
In tandem with the album release, Lofgren will launch a pay-per-view video series dubbed Rockality, in which he will delve into non-rehearsed tales from his storied career. The first episode will launch on his web site on July 21. “The times were heavy and consequential,” says Lofgren, who played on Neil Young’s After the Gold Rush at 18 and opened for Jimi Hendrix with his own band Grin a year later. “No internet, no cell phones, Vietnam war lottery, civil rights marches, Cuban missile crisis, assassinations. All during the greatest explosion of music in mankind’s history.”
Lofgren was recently featured on the pseudo Crazy Horse album All Roads Lead Home, released in March under the group members’ individual last names of Molina, Talbot, Lofgren & Young. He remains a member of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band, which begins an extensive European tour Friday in Dublin.
Here is the track list for Mountains:
Ain’t the Truth Enough
Only Ticket Out
Back in Your Arms
Won’t Cry No More (For Charlie Watts)
Nothing’s Easy (For Amy)
Only Your Smile
I Remember Her Name
We Better Find It