Soul music legend Mavis Staples is releasing a new album. On February 19, Staples will release Livin’ on a High Note, via Anti- Records. It was produced by M. Ward, and features songs written specifically for Staples by a number of artists, including Ward, Neko Case, Nick Cave, Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon and tUnE-yArDs’ Merrill Garbus, among others.
In a press release, Staples said this about the album:
I’ve been singing my freedom songs and I wanted to stretch out and sing some songs that were new. I told the writers I was looking for some joyful songs. I want to leave something to lift people up; I’m so busy making people cry, not from sadness, but I’m always telling a part of history that brought us down and I’m trying to bring us back up. These songwriters gave me a challenge. They gave me that feeling of, ‘Hey, I can hang! I can still do this!’ There’s a variety, and it makes me feel refreshed and brand new. Just like Benjamin Booker wrote on the opening track, ‘I got friends and I got love around me, I got people, the people who love me.’ I’m living on a high note, I’m above the clouds. I’m just so grateful. I must be the happiest old girl in the world. Yes, indeed.
Listen to the Valerie June penned “High Note” below, and check out the tracklist.
Mavis Staples Livin’ on a High Note tracklist:
1 Take Us Back (Benjamin Booker)
2 Love and Trust (Ben Harper)
3 If It’s a Light (The Head & the Heart)
4 Action (tUnE-yArds)
5 High Note (Valerie June)
6 Don’t Cry (M. Ward)
7 Tomorrow (Aloe Blacc/John Batiste)
8 Dedicated (Justin Vernon/M.Ward)
9 History Now (Neko Case)
10 One Love (Son Little)
11 Jesus Lay Down Beside Me (Nick Cave)
12 MLK Song (M. Ward / Martin Luther King)