Commentary: While the legendary John Prine battles coronavirus, Chicago cheers for an encore
His influence as a beacon for musicians of multiple generations is evident in his thick songbook, combed through by musicians as diverse as Southern soul singer Swamp Dogg, Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters and Justin Vernon of Bon Iver.
But for Chicagoans, Prine and his songs represent something more relatable: An approach that uses plain-spoken language to peel back the mysteries of ordinariness. The key is understatement — minimal details and those generous spaces in the music and between the verses.
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