“Stay Around feels vital and inviting” Associated Press
“a simmering blues rocker anchored by Cale’s plucky guitar and tender vocals” Rolling Stone
“The songs on this collection are warm and human and worth the wait” MOJO★★★★
“Stay Around shows Cale always kept a firm grip on quality control” Uncut
"a new repository of terrific rock ’n’ roll numbers" Paste
“Luminous… much to enjoy” The Wire
“with Stay Around, it feels like [Cale is] seated right next to you” No Depression
26 APRIL 2019 (TORONTO, ON) - Today, Because Music released Stay Around, the first posthumous release of works by beloved songwriter, guitarist, and singer JJ Cale, compiled by those closest to him—his widow, musician Christine Lakeland Cale, and friend and longtime manager, Mike Kappus. The album is available now digitally and on CD & limited collector vinyl edition.
The album has received universal praise, with the Associated Press writing “Stay Around feels as vital and inviting as Cale usually did,” and No Depression adding it “works so well because the songs are all up to Cale’s usual standard.”
Because Music have also released for the first time vinyl pressings of four albums from Cale’s catalogue: Closer To You (1994), Guitar Man (1996), Live (2001), and To Tulsa and Back (2004). Roll On (2009) has also been re-pressed after a long period out of print. The reissues are available now.
For the first time in a decade, listeners can be moved by a new collection of unreleased Cale songs, a feat that’s possible due to Cale’s modus operandi: in addition to regularly writing and recording new songs in his home studio, Cale would typically reserve outtakes from one album for later release on another. That resulted in a reserve of ready for release songs from which this album's collection was drawn. In compiling Stay Around, Christine pored over these songs, both studio and home recordings, that the public had never heard. The result is an album mixed and produced by Cale himself, left nearly untouched to leave, in Christine’s words, the “Cale Factor.” The only song not written by Cale is Christine’s “My Baby Blues,” the first song she and Cale cut as a four-piece combo in Bradley’s Barn studio in 1977, the year they met.
Christine speaks about how she met Cale, the early days of his success, his recording process, and more in the latest installment of the “My JJ Cale” series. In it, she says of the album “They’re truly songs people haven’t heard, and I hope that fans of John’s music will think it’s as good as Cale stuff. He wrote it, he played it, he recorded it, he mixed it. I’ve got to think: I’m giving them as much Cale as I can give them.” Check out the full video HERE.
Cale spent his career as an “under-the-radar-giant” (the New York Times) and influenced musicians as wide ranging as Neil Young (who wrote in his autobiography, “J. J.’s guitar playing is a huge influence on me. His touch is unspeakable. I am stunned by it.”); Beck (who, speaking to the L.A. Times, referred to his “effortlessness…restraint and underplaying” as “very powerful”); Eric Clapton (who, in his autobiography, called Cale “one of the most important artists in the history of rock, quietly representing the greatest asset his country has ever had”); and so many more.
Cale cut his teeth during the ’50s, playing guitar in bars in Oklahoma alongside fellow natives David Gates of Bread and Leon Russell, and is credited as one of the key figures in creating the laid-back “Tulsa sound.” He managed to gather a loyal fan following and the admiration of some of the most revered rock musicians while—in the unwavering desire to lead a normal life—eluding fame, and it was via other artists recording and performing his songs that he became best known. Eric Clapton recorded “After Midnight,” “Cocaine,” and several other Cale originals, his admiration culminating with the pair’s Road To Escondido collaboration in 2006, which earned Cale his first Grammy for Best Contemporary Blues Album, and his first RIAA Certified Gold Award.
Among the many others who covered Cale’s songs are Jerry Garcia, Captain Beefheart, Spiritualized, Beck, Lynyrd Skynyrd, John Mayer, Bryan Ferry, Santana, Chet Atkins, Johnny Cash, Lucinda Williams, The Band, Widespread Panic, Freddie King, Phish, Waylon Jennings, Maria Muldaur, Bobby “Blue” Bland, Hiss Golden Messenger, Dan Auerbach, and Lee Fields, to name just a few.
JJ Cale –Stay Around