Old Yellow Moon

For those of us who’ve been with Emmylou Harris from those long-ago days when she was lending vocal support to Gram Parsons, any new recording she puts out is warmly anticipated. But when such an album comes with the bonus of shared vocals with Rodney Crowell, it bodes well for the prospect of happy listening. And there’s an abundance of happy listening to be had on Old Yellow Moon, along with a little somber reflection about the fleet passage of time. For listeners of a certain vintage, aging along with our musical icons, a song like Matraca Berg’s “Back When We Were Beautiful” is bound to jerk a tear or two, especially if heard while looking through a CD booklet that includes a picture of Harris and Crowell facing the setting sun. Along with the stellar vocals and the down-pat instrumental support, there’s a bounty of good songwriting on this album, from Kris Kristofferson’s “Chase the Feeling,” to Patty Scialfa’s “Spanish Dancer,” Roger Miller’s “Invitation to the Blues,” and Crowell’s own “Open Season on My Heart.” Some might say it takes a lifetime to make an album this good, but Harris and Crowell have been doing it from the git-go. Bless ’em for it.