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The Lloyd Green Album

Peter Cooper

 

Peter Cooper is an East Nashville-based singer, songwriter, touring artist, sideman, producer, college professor, and award-winning journalist.  His first three solo albums, Mission Door (2008), The Lloyd Green Album (2010), and Opening Day (2013), received critical acclaim as have his three albums with duo partner Eric Brace.  He and Brace were nominated for a Grammy award for their sublime 2011 release I Love: Tom T. Hall's Songs of Fox Hollow.

In the fall of 2015, Cooper's fourth album comes out, Depot Light: Songs of Eric Taylor. Cooper, one of the finest singer-songwriters out there, has decided to make an album of nothing but Eric Taylor's songs. Why? "These songs are absolute narrative masterpieces," says Cooper. "It’s not that I wanted to somehow raise the profile of these songs, or pay tribute to Eric. This is a selfish project. I just wanted to sing these songs, and hope that maybe someone will mistake them for my own."

It's not the first time Cooper has covered Eric Taylor's songs. On his 2008 debut, Mission Door, there were ten Cooper originals and two covers, both by Taylor -- "All the Way to Heaven" and the title track. When Mission Door came out, American Songwriter magazine proclaimed it “Cooper’s diploma from the Tom T. Hall School of Damn Good Songwriting.” Cooper's second solo album was The Lloyd Green Album, another step in his on-going collaboration with the pedal steel Hall of Famer.  Album number three, Opening Day, found Cooper digging deeper making one of the finest singer-songwriter collections in the past decade. He has also released three duo works with Eric Brace, You Don't Have to Like Them Both, Master Sessions (with Lloyd Green and Mike Auldridge), and The Comeback Album.

Cooper's work has won praise from each of his chief influences: Tom T. Hall, John Prine, Todd Snider, Eric Taylor, and Kris Kristofferson. The latter said, “Peter Cooper looks at the world with an artist’s eye and a human heart and soul. His songs are the work of an original, creative imagination, alive with humor and heartbreak and irony and intelligence, with truth and beauty in the details. Deep stuff. And they get better every time you listen.”

For more than a decade, Cooper was the senior music writer and columnist for Nashville's daily paper, The Tennessean. He is currently working at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum as Museum Editor. Named one of Nashville’s “10 Most Interesting People” by Nashville Arts & Entertainment magazine, Cooper is also a session player, a producer who has worked with Snider, Emmylou Harris, Ricky Skaggs, Fayssoux Starling McLean, among others, and is professor of country music at Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music. 

 

The Lloyd Green Album

The Lloyd Green Album
1. Dumb Luck

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Lyrics

(by Peter Cooper) ---- Sometimes good fortune comes our way whether we deserve it or not. "I never got broke down/It was always just a bend."

2. The Last Laugh

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Lyrics

(by Todd Snider & Peter Cooper) ---- Todd Snider is East Nashville's songwriting master. he and Peter thought they were writing two separate swongs. Until they got together and figured out it was just this one. "Did you never wonder? Of course you did."

3. Elmer the Dancer

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Lyrics

(by Peter Cooper) ---- Peter met Elmer Hahn at Art’s Concertina Bar in Milwaukee. It was a cold night, a polka band was playing, and there was a “For Sale” sign out in the snow. Art's Concertina Bar is gone now. So is Elmer. This is a postcard from Peter's favorite bar, with supporting vocals from the great Kim Carnes.

4. Gospel Song

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Lyrics

(by Peter Cooper) ---- We look back at some things with a fair measure of regret. “There’s gonna be some wreckage when your dreams and your habits collide.”

5. Bells of Odilia

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Lyrics

(by Chris Richards) ---- This beautiful song seems a worthy companion piece to Kristofferson’s “Sunday Morning Coming Down.” St. Odilia Catholic Church is on Hooper Ave. in Los Angeles, and the bells are pretty loud when you’re trying to sleep a Sunday morning away.

6. Mama, Bake a Pie

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Lyrics

(by Tom T. Hall) ---- War, loss, longing, alcoholism, family, resignation and humor to set you up for the sucker punches. Oh, and a melodic Lloyd Green solo for the ages. Tom T. says this one isn't about the soldier so much as it's about the pie and the chicken.

7. Champion of the World

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Lyrics

(by Peter Cooper) ---- Anger is rooted in an insistence on fairness. Insist all you want, it ain’t gonna happen.

8. Tulsa Queen

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Lyrics

(by Emmylou Harris & Rodney Crowell) ---- People think of Emmylou Harris as one of our greatest song interpreters, so much so that her own songwriting sometimes gets left out of the discussion. She and Rodney Crowell wrote this one together, a long time ago. Rodney and Pam Rose, both friends and collaborators of Emmy’s, sing harmonies here. And Lloyd’s steel is as sad and pretty as anything you'll ever hear.

9. That Poor Guy

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Lyrics

(by Peter Cooper) ---- “I guess I’ve got no faith, got a little bit of hope/ All kind of questions, the answer is ‘nope.’” Check out the way Richard Bennett’s shiny National guitar blends with Lloyd’s steel here.

10. What Dub Does

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Lyrics

(by Peter Cooper & Baker Maultsby) -- Years back, Peter and his pal Baker used to visit Nashville from South Carolina, and they'd see Dub Cornett everywhere. Ask other people what he did for a living, and you'd hear, “I don’t know, but he’s way up in the music business.” Lloyd Green constructed a special Dub Lick just for this song, and it manages to do justice to the unforgettable, entertaining, and wondrous presence that is Dub Cornett.

11. Here Comes that Rainbow Again

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Lyrics

(by Kris Kristofferson) ---- Kristofferson writes with intelligence and soul and empathy because he’s a brilliant, soulful, empathetic person. He admits he had a little help here from John Steinbeck. Peter had help from Lloyd Green and Julie Lee.

12. Train to Birmingham

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Lyrics

(by John Hiatt) ---- Curiously, the author, John Hiatt, never recorded this. Kevin Welch did a beautiful version, but Peter always wanted to hear it with an outro from Lloyd Green and Jen Gunderman.

Peter Cooper

 

Peter Cooper is an East Nashville-based singer, songwriter, touring artist, sideman, producer, college professor, and award-winning journalist.  His first three solo albums, Mission Door (2008), The Lloyd Green Album (2010), and Opening Day (2013), received critical acclaim as have his three albums with duo partner Eric Brace.  He and Brace were nominated for a Grammy award for their sublime 2011 release I Love: Tom T. Hall's Songs of Fox Hollow.

In the fall of 2015, Cooper's fourth album comes out, Depot Light: Songs of Eric Taylor. Cooper, one of the finest singer-songwriters out there, has decided to make an album of nothing but Eric Taylor's songs. Why? "These songs are absolute narrative masterpieces," says Cooper. "It’s not that I wanted to somehow raise the profile of these songs, or pay tribute to Eric. This is a selfish project. I just wanted to sing these songs, and hope that maybe someone will mistake them for my own."

It's not the first time Cooper has covered Eric Taylor's songs. On his 2008 debut, Mission Door, there were ten Cooper originals and two covers, both by Taylor -- "All the Way to Heaven" and the title track. When Mission Door came out, American Songwriter magazine proclaimed it “Cooper’s diploma from the Tom T. Hall School of Damn Good Songwriting.” Cooper's second solo album was The Lloyd Green Album, another step in his on-going collaboration with the pedal steel Hall of Famer.  Album number three, Opening Day, found Cooper digging deeper making one of the finest singer-songwriter collections in the past decade. He has also released three duo works with Eric Brace, You Don't Have to Like Them Both, Master Sessions (with Lloyd Green and Mike Auldridge), and The Comeback Album.

Cooper's work has won praise from each of his chief influences: Tom T. Hall, John Prine, Todd Snider, Eric Taylor, and Kris Kristofferson. The latter said, “Peter Cooper looks at the world with an artist’s eye and a human heart and soul. His songs are the work of an original, creative imagination, alive with humor and heartbreak and irony and intelligence, with truth and beauty in the details. Deep stuff. And they get better every time you listen.”

For more than a decade, Cooper was the senior music writer and columnist for Nashville's daily paper, The Tennessean. He is currently working at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum as Museum Editor. Named one of Nashville’s “10 Most Interesting People” by Nashville Arts & Entertainment magazine, Cooper is also a session player, a producer who has worked with Snider, Emmylou Harris, Ricky Skaggs, Fayssoux Starling McLean, among others, and is professor of country music at Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music. 

 

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