The Party Ain’t Over
It’s kind of gallant the way Jack White keeps lending his name and his rather astonishing talents to the task of introducing once-famous singers to new generations of listeners who aren’t likely to have heard of them. A few years back, he gave us Van Lear Rose, a White-Striped take on Loretta Lynn. Now, with The Party Ain’t Over, White provides a scintillating musical setting for Wanda Jackson, known as the Queen of Rockabilly more than a half century ago. She hasn’t put much new stuff out for years, but she’s come roaring back, thanks to the estimable Mr. White and the great band he’s put together for this production. I can’t sing a lick, but with White and this ensemble behind me, I think even I could fool an audience into thinking I was pretty good. The songs here are an eclectic mix that includes a very interesting rendition of Bob Dylan’s “Thunder on the Mountain,” and a cover of the Amy Winehouse song “You Know I’m No Good,” which fits Jackson’s old hell-raiser image like a set of brass knuckles. “Teach Me Tonight,” a song once owned by Doris Day, is given an oddball treatment here, and the Ray Charles hit “Busted” is given new life. It’s nice to hear Jackson again, but this is definitely a Jack White album. Accept no substitutes.