Pilgrimage

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The first secular country album from brothers Larry, Steve and Rudy Gatlin since 1992 is a tribute of sorts to Larry’s longtime friend and mentor, Johnny Cash. Spoken-word items from Larry tell tales of the ways in which the Man in Black touched his life, even as the provocatively titled lead single “Johnny Cash is Dead (and His House Burned Down)” hammers home the message that the past is gone for good. Larry is in exceptionally strong voice, the brothers’ harmonies remain warm and distinctive, and producer John Carter Cash wisely keeps the sound uncluttered. Pilgrimage is a history lesson with a heart.

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Other performers include Rodney Crowell, Patty Griffin and Jason Isbell.