How The 'West' Was Won

Loss and loneliness are at the core of Lucinda Williams' eighth album, "West," due this week via Lost Highway.

Loss and loneliness are at the core of Lucinda Williams' eighth album, "West," due this week via Lost Highway.

The disc finds the critically acclaimed singer/songwriter coping with another painful breakup and the passing of her mother, whom she reminisces in songs like "Mama You Sweet" and "Fancy Funeral." In such songs as "Come On," "Learning How to Live" and "Everything Has Changed," the Grammy winner again deals with heartbreak.

"The songs deal with a chapter in my life and they definitely tell a story," says Williams. "It's probably been the most prolific time in my life as a writer. I'd been through so many changes -- my mother's death and a very tumultuous relationship that ended badly -- so obviously there's a lot of pain and struggling, but it ends with a look toward the future."

Featuring the Jayhawks' Gary Louris, celebrated drummer Jim Keltner, longtime Dylan bassist Tony Garnier (both of whom played on her "Essence" disc) and Williams' longtime guitarist Doug Petibone, "West" was co-produced by Williams and Hal Willner, whose credits include Elvis Costello, Lou Reed and Bill Frisell, who also guests on "West."