Canadian legend Neil Young has confirmed he has recorded an album of covers featuring Jack White at the former White Stripes frontman’s Third Man Studios in Nashville. Rumours of the collaboration first arose in January, with Young’s camp quickly rubbishing them.
“False Rumours: Neil Young and Jack White are not doing a record of duets as has been erroneously posted on various outlets. We are certain those rumours have no basis in truth,” read a post on Young’s Facebook page. Young himself has now confirmed the rumours to Billboard.
“It’s not ready for prime time yet… It’s not really a release yet, but it’s a very unique record. It’s like a time capsule. It doesn’t sound like anything you’ve heard that was made recently. And some great songs, some beautiful music,” Young said of the new album of covers of his favourite writers.
“They’re songs that I love, songs that changed my life, songs that made it so that I understood what someone else was saying to me, songs by greater writers,” he said. The album, which features White on two tracks, is called A Letter Home and will most likely be released later this year.
Speaking to Rolling Stone, Young described recording the album as “one of the lowest-tech experiences I’ve ever had,” reportedly inspired by a version of Bert Jansch‘s The Needle of Death, which Young recorded for Record Store Day 2013 in White’s famous 1947 Voice-o-Graph booth.
“I have new songs that I’m working on, and I haven’t stopped doing that,” the 68-year-old rock legend also told Billboard. “I do it when I feel like it and I’m collecting them. And sometimes I play them live before they come out as a record, and because of the way everything is people hear them before they come out, on the Internet. But I still feel like I’m gonna make records of them.”
“I’d like to make a record with a full-blown orchestra, live — a mono recording with one mic,” he said. “I want to do something like that where we really record what happened, with one point of view and the musicians moved closer and farther away, the way it was done in the past.”
Watch: The Raconteurs’ Brendan Benson In The Third Man Voice-o-Graph Booth