Dr John “Walk On Guilded Splinters” – laying some gris-gris on y’all

Photo: Bruce Weber

Mac Rebennack took on the mantle of Dr John, the Nightripper on the classic album ‘Gris-Gris‘ released in 1968.  It’s fair to say that it set a musical direction for most of the rest of Rebennack’s life.  It’s three years since Dr John passed, and his last recordings are soon to be released on a new album ‘Things Happen That Way‘ which will appear on September 23rd.  Today we have  first taster from it, a re-recording of a standout song from ‘Gris-Gris‘, with this version of the classic ‘Walk On Guilded Splinters‘ also featuring Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real.  It’s certainly a very different take on the song, but it’s a take that still boils over with barely restrained threatenings and extravagant boastingfulnesss and all.  Lukas Nelson has said of the song: “It’s a great honour to attempt to interpret the work of Dr. John. His music has inspired me since childhood. He was a friend to many, and we all miss him dearly. His music is medicine.”

This final studio album by Dr John reflects his admiration and enjoyment of Country music – ‘Things Happen That Way’ is the album which he began plotting decades ago.  In bringing his album’s songs to life, Dr. John drew on a lineup of musicians befitting of a universally beloved luminary. Along with an elite cadre of New Orleans session players, the album’s personnel also include Willie Nelson and Aaron Neville.


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About Jonathan Aird 1879 Articles
Sure, I could climb high in a tree, or go to Skye on my holiday. I could be happy. All I really want is the excitement of first hearing The Byrds, the amazement of decades of Dylan's music, or the thrill of seeing a band like The Long Ryders live. That's not much to ask, is it?

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