My Morning Jacket frontman Yim Yames, Son Volt songwriter Jay Farrar, Will Johnson of Centro-Matic and Andres Parker of Varnaline were invited by the daughter of Woody Guthrie to root through a collection of the American folk music pioneer's unfinished songs and lyrics and use whatever they like -- kind of like a yard sale for masters of American songwriting.
The result of this rummaging is New Multitudes, which sees the quartet of rootsy Americana standard-bearers performing songs Guthrie never got around to finishing or recording.
The album will be out on Feb. 28 via Rounder Records in both an original and 23-track deluxe edition.
Guthrie was a troubadour in the truest sense, always traveling to take his music to the people. So Farrar and Co. are all but obligated to tour behind the album. The four of them will perform songs from Multitudes on March 14 at Webster Hall. Bobby Bare Jr. will open. But who will write "this machine kills fascists" on their guitar?