Edgar Winter‘s upcoming album, Brother Johnny: An All-Star Tribute to Johnny Winter, is a loving homage to his late older sibling that features an impressive cast of guest musicians joining him on versions of various original tunes and covers that Johnny Winter recorded throughout his career.
Among the many artists who contributed to the album was Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins, who died unexpectedly on March 25 at the age of 50. Rather than playing drums on the project Hawkins lent his vocal talents to a rendition of “Guess I’ll Go Away,” a Johnny-penned tune that appeared on his 1970 album Johnny Winter And.
Edgar tells ABC Audio that with Hawkins passing away before the Brother Johnny album’s April 15 release, it makes the track “sort of like a tribute within a tribute.”
“It’s such an odd happenstance,” Edgar notes. “I mean, here’s a guy that’s singing a tribute song to my brother, Johnny, and he sings the song and then…passes away himself. And in similar circumstances, in a hotel room, on the road. It’s just bizarre, and very compelling.”
Regarding the experience of working with Taylor, Edgar says, “I’m so happy to have had the opportunity to meet him, because he had such energy, just pure love of music…And it touched my heart.”
He adds, “It’s probably one of his last performances, and it means the world to me to have him on the song.”
The 75-year-old rocker also points out that Hawkins’ performance brought an element he felt was missing from the project.
“I wanted a more modern approach to the vocal, rather than an old school blues-style approach,” Edgar explains. “And that was perfect for Taylor.”
Brother Johnny can be pre-ordered now. Here’s the album’s full track list:
“Mean Town Blues” — featuring Joe Bonamassa
“Alive and Well” — featuring Kenny Wayne Shepherd
“Lone Star Blues” — featuring Keb’ Mo’
“I’m Yours and I’m Hers” — featuring Billy Gibbons & Derek Trucks
“Johnny B. Goode” — featuring Joe Walsh & David Grissom
“Stranger” — featuring Michael McDonald, Joe Walsh & Ringo Starr
“Highway 61 Revisited” — featuring Kenny Wayne Shepherd & John McFee
“Rock ‘n’ Roll Hoochie Koo” — featuring Steve Lukather
“When You Got a Good Friend” — featuring Doyle Bramhall II
“Jumpin’ Jack Flash” — featuring Phil X
“Guess I’ll Go Away” — featuring Taylor Hawkins & Doug Rappoport
“Drown in My Own Tears”
“Self Destructive Blues” — featuring Joe Bonamassa
“Memory Pain” — featuring Warren Haynes
“Stormy Monday Blues” — featuring Robben Ford
“Got My Mojo Workin'” — featuring Bobby Rush
“End of the Line” — featuring David Campbell Strings
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