All the Roadrunning

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All the Roadrunning
Studio album by Mark Knopfler and Emmylou Harris
Released 24 April 2006 (2006-04-24)
Recorded 1998–2005
Genre Country-rock
Length 50:29
Label Mercury
Universal Music
Warner Bros. (USA)
Producer Mark Knopfler
Chuck Ainlay
Mark Knopfler chronology
Private Investigations
(2005)
All the Roadrunning
(2006)
Real Live Roadrunning
(2006)
Emmylou Harris chronology
The Very Best of Emmylou Harris: Heartaches & Highways
(2005)
All the Roadrunning
(2006)
Real Live Roadrunning
(2006)

All the Roadrunning is a collaborative album by British singer-songwriter and guitarist Mark Knopfler and American singer-songerwriter Emmylou Harris, released on 24 April 2006 by Mercury Records and Universal Music internationally, and by Warner Bros. Records in the United States. The album received generally favorable reviews,[1] and reached the number one position on album charts in Denmark, Norway, and Switzerland. The album peaked at number eight in the United Kingdom, and number 17 on the Billboard 200 in the United States.[2] "This Is Us" was released as the first single, followed by "Beachcombing". The album was the result of a longtime collaboration between the two artists. Over the course of seven years, the songs were recorded by the pair with minimal information released about the project. A follow-up live album, Real Live Roadrunning, was released following All the Roadrunning Tour.

Background[edit]

Mark Knopfler and Emmylou Harris have had long histories of collaborating with and supporting other artists. In addition to her 23 solo albums and three successful collaborative albums with Dolly Parton and Linda Ronstadt, Harris has recorded backing and duet vocals with many of the great recording artists of her generation, including The Band, Garth Brooks, Johnny Cash, John Denver, Bob Dylan, George Jones, Lyle Lovett, Bill Monroe, Roy Orbison, Gram Parsons, Tammy Wynette, and Neil Young.[3] Knopfler has also been involved in a number of collaborative projects, recording duets with Chet Atkins, George Jones, Van Morrison, and James Taylor, producing albums by Willy DeVille, Bob Dylan, Bap Kennedy, and Randy Newman, and contributing guitar tracks to numerous recordings by other artists, including Clint Black, The Chieftains, Eric Clapton, Phil Everly, Waylon Jennings, B.B. King, Kris Kristofferson, Sonny Landreth, Kate and Anna McGarrigle, Cliff Richard, Sting, Tina Turner, Steely Dan, and Jimmy Webb.[4] Both shared a love of country music and an admiration for one of country music's guitar masters, Chet Atkins. In 1990, Atkins and Knopfler recorded a collaborative album Neck and Neck, but their friendship went back even further. Knopfler and Harris first met while appearing on a Chet Atkins television special in 1987. They stayed in touch, and about ten years later in Nashville, Mark played a few of his songs for Harris, and the idea to record together emerged.[5]

Recording[edit]

All the Roadrunning was recorded sporadically over a seven-year period. Two of its tracks, the Cajun-style "Red Staggerwing" and the acoustic ballad "Donkey Town", were originally planned to be included in Knopfler's 2000 solo album Sailing to Philadelphia. On Thanksgiving evening in 1998, at a recording session in Nashville, Knopfler and Harris ran through the two songs with Harris adding her vocals.[5] The session sparked the idea for a collaborative album of duets. Harris later recalled, "When you combine two unique voices it creates a third, phantom voice. ... I love the third voice that Mark and I create. We noticed right away that our voices blended pretty effortlessly."[5] Further recording sessions took place in 2002 and 2004, with the pair recording songs from the ground up, supported by some of the best Nashville session players. Their duets album was interrupted by their individual solo projects—Harris's Stumble into Grace in 2003 and Knopfler's Shangri-La in 2004—and their supporting tours and promotional activities.[5]

Composition[edit]

"If This Is Goodbye" is based on the last telephone call of a woman trapped in the World Trade Center on 9/11.[6]

Touring[edit]

Knopfler and Harris supported the release of All the Roadrunning with the All the Roadrunning Tour of Europe and North America, which started on 26 May 2006 in Brussels, Belgium, and included 23 concerts in 23 cities, ending in Berkeley, California, on 30 June 2006.[7] The tour lineup included Mark Knopfler (guitar, vocals), Emmylou Harris (guitar, vocals), Guy Fletcher (keyboards), Richard Bennett (guitar), Stuart Duncan (fiddle, mandolin), Matt Rollings (keyboards), Glenn Worf (bass), and Danny Cummings (drums). The concert on 28 June 2006 at the Gibson Amphitheatre in Los Angeles was recorded and released as a live album and DVD, Real Live Roadrunning, on 14 November 2006 by Mercury Records and Universal Music internationally, and by Warner Bros. Records in the United States.

Critical response[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 63/100 [1]
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3.5/5 stars [8]
Entertainment Weekly B− [9]
Music Box 4/5 stars [10]
Rolling Stone 3/5 stars [11]
The Telegraph Positive [12]
Winnipeg Sun 4/5 stars [13]

In his review for the Winnipeg Sun, Darryl Sterdan gave the album four out of five stars, calling the collaboration a "match made in heaven".[13] Sterdan continued:

At first blush, you'd think Mark Knopfler's Dylanesque croak and Emmylou Harris's angelic tones would be a beauty-and-the-beast scenario. But we are glad to report this decidedly odd couple make some seriously beautiful music together on All the Roadrunning. Granted, this is nothing new for Emmylou, who has partnered with virtually every important roots and country artist of the last 30 years and never failed to make them shine just a little brighter. But the bulk of the credit really here has to go to Knopfler. He's the dominant force on the disc, acting as co-producer and penning all but one of these elegantly rootsy songs.[13]

Sterdan praised Knopfler's songwriting on the album, especially "This is Us", "Right Now", and the "Celtic-tinged bluegrass" of "Red Staggerwing". Sterdan also noted Knopfler's production, approaching the project with a lighter touch than on his past projects, and wisely reining in his signature guitar work enough to highlight Harris' singing.[13]

In his review for The Telegraph, Neil McCormick wrote that Knopfler and Harris recorded a "remarkable new album" that is a "collection of rich, mature songs that reflect their combined life experiences", and that is "one of the best albums of both their careers".[12]

In his review for Entertainment Weekly, Josh Tyrangiel gave the album a B– score, writing that the two artists "seem oddly matched" and that Knopfler's guitarwork tends to overwhelms Harris' vocals.[9]

Track listing[edit]

All songs were written by Mark Knopfler, except where indicated.

No. Title Length
1. "Beachcombing"   4:14
2. "I Dug Up a Diamond"   3:38
3. "This Is Us"   4:39
4. "Red Staggerwing"   3:03
5. "Rollin' On"   4:14
6. "Love and Happiness" (Emmylou Harris, Kimmie Rhodes) 4:22
7. "Right Now"   3:33
8. "Donkey Town"   5:42
9. "Belle Starr" (Emmylou Harris) 3:06
10. "Beyond My Wildest Dreams"   4:25
11. "All the Roadrunning"   4:49
12. "If This Is Goodbye"   4:44
Total length:
50:29

Personnel[edit]

Music
Production
  • Mark Knopfler – producer
  • Chuck Ainlay – producer, recording engineer, mixing
  • Guy Fletcher – recording engineer
  • Mark Kapps – recording engineer (horns)
  • John Saylor – assistant recording engineer
  • Mark Ralston – assistant recording engineer
  • Rupert Coulson – mixing assistant
  • Graham Meek – technical support
  • Maria Verel – hair and makeup for Ms. Harris
  • Fabio Iovino – photography

Charts and certifications[edit]

Albums[edit]

Chart (2006) Peak
Australia Albums Chart[2] 41
Austria Albums Chart[2] 8
Belgium Albums Chart[2] 5
Denmark Albums Chart[2] 1
Dutch Albums Chart[2] 3
Finland Albums Chart[2] 22
France Albums Chart[2] 17
Germany Albums Chart[2] 3
Ireland Albums Chart[2] 25
Italy Albums Chart[2] 3
New Zealand Albums Chart[2] 19
Norway Albums Chart[2] 1
Poland Albums Chart[2] 19
Spain Albums Chart[2] 9
Sweden Albums Chart[2] 2
Swiss Albums Chart[2] 1
UK Albums Chart[2] 8
US Billboard 200[2] 17
World Albums Chart[2] 7

Certifications[edit]

Organisation Level Date
BPI – UK Silver May 12, 2006
BPI – UK Gold August 25, 2006
IFPI – Switzerland Gold 2006
BVMI – Germany Gold 2006

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "All the Roadrunning". Metacritic. Retrieved 28 November 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t "All the Roadrunning". aCharts. Retrieved 28 November 2012. 
  3. ^ "Emmylou Harris Discography". Discogs. Retrieved 29 November 2012. 
  4. ^ "Mark Knopfler Discography". Discogs. Retrieved 29 November 2012. 
  5. ^ a b c d McNair, James (7 April 2006). "Mark Knopfler and Emmylou Harris: Just the two of them". The Independent. Retrieved 28 November 2012. 
  6. ^ "Mark Knopfler: A Life in Songs". 2011-01-28. BBC. BBC Four. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00xz0zx. Retrieved 2012-07-20.
  7. ^ "All the Roadrunning Tour 2006". Mark Knopfler News. Retrieved 25 November 2012. 
  8. ^ Monger, James Christopher. All the Roadrunning at AllMusic
  9. ^ a b Tyrangiel, Josh (14 April 2006). "Music Review: All the Roadrunning (2006)". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 28 November 2012. 
  10. ^ Music Box, May 2006
  11. ^ Rolling Stone, April 18, 2006
  12. ^ a b McCormick, Neil (22 April 2006). "Ballad of the guitar hero and the country queen". The Telegraph. Retrieved 28 November 2012. 
  13. ^ a b c d Sterdan, Darryl (2006). "Knopfler, Harris make a beautiful team". Winnipeg Sun. Retrieved 28 November 2012. 

External links[edit]