James Hand

The Truth Will Set You Free

In these days of the retro-appropriation of just about any musical style, it’s rare to come across an under-appreciated real thing. Hand, who’s likely to become a 54-year-old overnight sensation, has been playing ’50s-era honky-tonk swing for more than four decades, and this is his first nationally released album. Think Hank, Lefty and Ernest Tubb. “In the Corner, At the Table, By the Jukebox” and “When You Stopped Loving Me, So Did I” tell the tales that lie at the heart of this music. His stories of hard livin’, good love gone bad and of staring temptation and the devil down will have you spinning around the closest available wooden dance floor. He’s still got his day job—training horses—but this is the raw real deal.