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Trouble No More

John MellencampAudio CD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (65 customer reviews)

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Audio CD, 2008 $8.46  
Audio CD, 2003 --  

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On The Rural Route 7609 - Video Preview


A Meditation on John Mellencamp’s Life, Death, Love and Freedom
A few years ago, the Hungarian ambassador to the United States asked me to moderate a panel discussion at the embassy on “Rock & Roll as a Force for Freedom on Both Sides of the Iron Curtain.” The panel was to consist of the ambassador (András Simonyi), Tommy Ramone and me.
“In all respect ... Read more in Amazon's John Mellencamp Store

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 3, 2003)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Columbia
  • ASIN: B000094OU1
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (65 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #137,436 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Stones In My Passway
2. Death Letter
3. Johnny Hart
4. Baltimore Oriole
5. Teardrops Will Fall
6. Diamond Joe
7. The End Of The World
8. Down In The Bottom
9. Lafayette
10. Joliet Bound
11. John The Revelator
12. To Washington

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Before John Mellencamp recorded his classic Scarecrow, he learned hundreds of classic rock covers from the '60s. Here the Indiana troubadour ventures back to the very roots of American popular music, learning traditional songs associated with the likes of Robert Johnson, Son House, Howlin' Wolf, and Woody Guthrie. The result is Mellencamp's rawest album to date, updating the acoustic sounds of those early idioms for modern times while keeping them firmly rooted in tradition. In that sense, it's not unlike his hero Bob Dylan's two country-blues cover albums from the mid-'90s--though the ever-mischievous Mellencamp has a little fun with his definitions here, paying tribute to his Hoosier background by covering Bloomington native Hoagy Carmichael's "Brooklyn Oriole" and Lucinda Williams's 1980 ode to "Lafayette," while pulling a beautiful stark version of Skeeter Davis's wonderful 1963 country-pop ballad "End of the World" out of left field. The former James Brown impersonator has never sang better. The album closes with "To Washington," credited to Mellencamp, but actually a "borrowed blues" that's been used to address political figures as far back as Calvin Coolidge when recorded by Charlie Poole, the Carter Family, and Guthrie. This time, the song addresses one George W. Bush and surely won't gain Mellencamp any new fans among those who'd support a Dixie Chicks boycott. --Bill Holdship

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
36 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cover Some More July 9, 2003
Format:Audio CD
I have been a fan of Mellencamp since 1982, and I have never failed to buy every one of his cds since that time. I don't normally enjoy a full cd of covers, but Mellencamp may be the only artist who pulls it off. First, I consider myself to be an above average music buff, so the fact that he managed to find a set of songs that, prior to this recording, I had never heard makes this cd stand above other cover cds. I am tired of cover cds where you know all the songs by heart and there is no need to cover them. Second, Mellencamp stretches himself musically to incorporate blues, funk and folk--something he is known for, but this cd has more of a stripped down feel to it, like 1989's "Big Daddy", which gives the songs a raw and immediate feel. Most of the songs have themes covering depression, loss of a loved one, murder & mayhem, prostitution, shame, political corruption, subjects Mellencamp always presents convincingly and honestly. Once again, I have to say that corporate owned radio and music television will overlook this gem of a cd in favor of fluff, but to those of us who remember a time when music actually meant something, this cd is for you and Mellencamp fans like myself. "Stones In My Passway", "Death Letter", "Johnny Hart", "Teardrops Will Fall", "Diamond Joe", "Down In The Bottom" could all easily be hits, but they won't see the light of day. "To Washington" may not be popular among patriotic types and conservatives, but Mellencamp's only self-penned song captures the moronic state of our government officials. I'll take the music on this disc over pseudo-intellectual, money-grubbing, sex obsessed, angst ridden drivel you can find on your radio any time. If you are thirsty for some meaningful music with real instruments by a real artist pick up "Trouble No More".
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent - stellar - essential - perfect album June 21, 2003
Format:Audio CD
I have not been a particularly big fan of John Mellencamp over the years, though I never shut off the radio when his songs came on. But I have been a fan of old folk and blues artists stretching back to the beginning of recording in the early part of this century. I've loved rural artists like Blind Lemon Jefferson, Skip James, Charley Patton and Robert Johnson, and also liked the later electric artists such as Muddy Waters and Howlin Wolf. For anyone who enjoys this genre, I would say buy this immediately. This album is one solid piece of work which I think any blues fan would enjoy. It's one of those that you put on repeat for hours and it's still fresh. I can already tell this will be one of my favorite albums of the year. John uses instruments that have that rural flavor to them as he turns in stunning renditions of song after song. As for the oft-heard criticisms of "To Washington" for John's daring to speak his mind in the USA in 2003 (a dangerous proposition for anyone), I say even if you're a die-hard fan of Bush, you'd only be doing yourself a disservice by ignoring this great album, which delves into the very history of american music, over the contents of one two minute song. This album should win a grammy.
After hearing this, I'm thinking it's time to go back and start listening to the albums tracks I've never heard from his mid 80's megahit albums. You just can't lose with this - don't waste any time, get it today.
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19 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Americana From Mr. Mellencamp June 4, 2003
Format:Audio CD
John Mellencamp is a favorite of mine. If you go back and listen to his recordings chronologically, you can hear the growth from a hard edged rock and roller to a singer/songwriter of depth and feeling. I knew that this release would be fitting, since John has been heading in this direction. He is after all a songwriter of Americana now, and this collection of roots music is fully him.
My favorite though, hands down, is his yearning 'The End of the World,' the old Skeeter Davis tear-jerker. His straight-forward and raw approach, sans even the song's beautiful harmony vocal, is just gorgeous and heart wrenching. The cd would be worth having just for that song alone, but there's another half dozen great songs here. If you're a fan of American Roots music, and not too big on John, you'll still find very much to enjoy here. If, like me, Mellencamp is an American Music staple, you'll love it.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars full of surprises July 23, 2003
Format:Audio CD
Wow, this guy has evolved tremendously over time. Who would have thought that the guy doing those catchy videos back in the eighties would become such an accomplished musician, mining musical gold from expert song-writing and authentically crafted songs?
I was not a true Mellencamp fan by any stretch of the imagination, but this one won me over big time.
Congrats to John for staying on task and becoming such an extraordinary, talented and multifaceted musician who deftly floats between genres with authority and uniqueness!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent American music August 26, 2003
Format:Audio CD
Call it "Roots" or "Americana" or just great music. I would hope that any fan of real music knows these songs already (I have most of the origianal or earlier versions). JM makes them his own and adds plenty. The playing on the album is very fine and the production excellent. These songs make you proud to be an American and shows the wide range of music in our great land. From Woody to Hoagy, this is one fine album, a must for anyone who appreciates traditional roots music. Truly a celebration of the USA.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars SOUNDS GOOD!
Read reviews of it prior to purchase (was consideringthe new "live" release, but didn't want to spend the xtra$$)-might do so now! Not bad at all!
Published 8 days ago by LARRY S LANDOS
5.0 out of 5 stars Magnificent
Awesome non commercial work by a great artist! Well worth the money and then some. Does not get any better than this.
Published 12 months ago by Craig W. Shurtleff
4.0 out of 5 stars Blues, Folk, Country, Pop, Jazz, Trad... it's all covered
This album is a collection of covers, but it is misleading to classify them all as blues or folk, it is more varied than that. Read more
Published 16 months ago by G. K.
5.0 out of 5 stars BEAUTIFUL COVERS
This time around John Mellencamp sings mostly covers that are well chosen and beautifully sung.
He does provide some new lyrics to the traditional song "TO... Read more
Published 18 months ago by John Walsh
4.0 out of 5 stars Contract No More
John Mellencamp made no secret about the fact that his tenure on Columbia was not much to his liking. Read more
Published on July 27, 2010 by Tim Brough
5.0 out of 5 stars Classics redone--in such a great way.
Death Letter--originally a Son House track, is by itself, worth the cost of this album. The others who have reviewed this have done a great job so no point covering that ground. Read more
Published on May 17, 2010 by Just the Facts Ma'am
3.0 out of 5 stars "To Washington" ruined it
I listened to this album on Rhapsody a few months ago. I had never heard any of these songs before, so I thought JM's covers of them were great, especially "Johnny Hart", "The End... Read more
Published on May 5, 2010 by Joseph Rankin
5.0 out of 5 stars J.J. Cale - Trouble no more
Nice shipping to Brazil, take more time to arrive than I expected, but within the agreed, very happy.
Published on August 31, 2009 by Jose Paulo Nunes
5.0 out of 5 stars outstanding blues by John
A friend loaned me this cd and I thought, blues from a rocker again? yeah, right. I was stunned by the faithful sound John gives us, particularly on Death letter and Stones in my... Read more
Published on May 26, 2009 by audiodude
5.0 out of 5 stars Original Americana
Although all the songs here are covers of American standards dating back to the rough and tumble depression era - there is nothing dated about the music. Read more
Published on September 30, 2008 by E. Sherman
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