Country, bluegrass, and Americana legend John McEuen is excited to release his long-awaited album, The Newsman: A Man Of Record, today on Compass Records. In this project for McEuen, the album has ten spoken word tracks and one instrumental piece. Each one tells a special story in a way that’s like a play, with John’s own style of music in the background. The album starts with a story about a newspaper seller who had a big impact on John when he was getting started in Los Angeles and ends with “Jules’ Theme,” a song inspired by Jules Verne talking about his wife, who passed away in a French cemetery. Every part of the album is carefully put together to make it unforgettable.

“It was time to bring back the art form of spoken word, where there’s a story with music behind it,” shares McEuen. “The music does not have to reflect anything like a melody, so it’s supportive of the words. I chose some pieces that were not spoken words with music but made them so, and some pieces that were definite spoken words with music and tried to support them as well. These tracks span over 200 years to recent and have made an impact on me. In return, I hope they make an impact on you. I hope you enjoy it!.”

The album features a mix of tracks from different eras and genres. The collection spans various literary themes from Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s Civil War-era poem “Killed at the Ford” to Robert Service’s “The Cremation of Sam McGee” about a Yukon prospector. Other tracks include Stephen Vincent Benét’s “The Mountain Whippoorwill,” Hank Williams Sr.’s “Fly Trouble,” and Walter Brennan’s “Old Rivers.” Thomas Monroe’s Vietnam War reflection “Nui Ba Den” contrasts with more recent compositions like John Carter Cash’s “The Guitar Of Pineapple John,” Hans Olson’s “I’ll Be Glad (When They Run Out Of Gas),” and Thaddeus Bryant’s “Red Clay.”

John McEuen was recently featured in Forbes, where he rode with journalist Jim Clash in a Nascar at over 170MPH for six laps. This was a highlight of McEuen’s life, getting to be inside the car and this speed.