ROLLINGSTONE.COM – James Taylor Details New Album, Hits Road With Jackson Browne
By Daniel Kreps
James Taylor will take on the Great American Songbook on the singer’s upcoming album American Standard, due out February 28th. The LP is Taylor’s first since 2015’s Before This World and 19th overall.
“I’ve always had songs I grew up with that I remember really well, that were part of the family record collection — and I had a sense of how to approach, so it was a natural to put American Standard together,” Taylor said in a statement. “I know most of these songs from the original cast recordings of the famous Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals, including My Fair Lady, Oklahoma, Carousel, Showboat and others.”
Taylor also unveiled the first single from American Standard, a take on the Gene De Paul-Sammy Chan jazz classic “Teach Me Tonight,” previously popularized by Dinah Washington and Frank Sinatra.
Taylor added, “In terms of how they were performed and recorded before, we paid attention to the chords and melody, but we were interested in doing something new, and in bringing something new to it, we’ve reinterpreted the songs, that’s what makes it worth doing.”
The album also features Taylor’s version of standards like “My Blue Heaven,” “Moon River” and “Pennies From Heaven,” as well as a trio of tracks penned by Rodgers and Hammerstein.
Taylor will also embark on a North American tour this summer alongside Jackson Browne, with the singer/songwriters performing in arenas and amphitheaters starting May 15th in New Orleans to July 10th in Camden, New Jersey. Along the way, Taylor will also play a one-off stadium gig at Boston’s Fenway Park with special guests Brandi Carlile and Shawn Colvin.