First album of original material since 2001.
John Mellencamp has unveiled the track list for "Freedom Road," his first album of original material since 2001. The set is due Jan. 23 via UMe/Universal Republic and, as previously reported, includes the single "Our Country," which is featured prominently in a Chevrolet commercial. The track recently earned Mellencamp his first appearance on the Billboard Hot 100 in nine years and just the third of his career on Hot Country Songs.
The 10-track set was recorded over the past year at Mellencamp’s Belmont Mall studio in Bloomington, Ind. "It sounds very 1966, but it sounds now," he told Billboard.com recently. "'Our Country' is the most John Mellencamp-sounding record on it. I think people are gonna go, 'Wow!,' or they're gonna go, 'What is he trying to do?'"
"We tore apart ... every song from 1966, 1965," he added. "We listened to all that music, then we learned it, we listened to it, we examined it -- 'How did they do that?' We were inspired by it, we copied it, we stole it. We did everything we could from that era." Joan Baez duets with Mellencamp on the track "Jim Crow."
"Freedom Road" is the follow-up to 2003's "Trouble No More," an album of blues and folk covers. Mellencamp’s last original album was 2001's "Cuttin' Heads."