Twenty years ago this month, a little band named Uncle Tupelo released an album called No Depression. This is one of those “important” albums that people should know about, whether you like the music or not.
Why? Well here are three reasons:
- It gave birth to a musical movement. The alt-country/y’alternative genre pretty much points to this album as the quintessential first album to capture unique the blend of punk and the sincerity of classic country. I think it also provides a blueprint for indie music in general.
- It gave birth to a magazine. If the album was what people gathered around to explore new sounds, the magazine No Depression, first in print and now as an online magazine, covered how that new sound was expressed.
- It gave introduced the world to Jeff Tweedy and Jay Farrar, both of whom have gone on to form street cred-worthy bands Wilco and Son Volt, respectively. And those two bands have influenced countless others.
So, happy birthday No Depression. In celebration, take a moment sometime this month to give the band a listen, if you haven’t heard them before. And if you have, dust off those CDs and spend part of each day this month listening to the magic.
Have you heard this album? Leave some impressions in the comments.