If We Were Vampires - Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit
We have been a big fan of our next LCM featured artist Grammy award winning Jason Isbell for quite a while now. He is one of leading lights of modern Americana and Alt Country Rock. Recorded at the legendary RCA Studio A with producer Dave Cobb at the helm, Jason's new album 'The Nashville Sound' is a masterpiece. Our LCM #TrackOfTheDay a stand out track on the album, an inspiring and wistful ode to the beauty and inevitability of love and death entitled 'If We Were Vampires'.
Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit, is primarily made up of musicians from the Muscle Shoals, Alabama.
- Sadler Vaden, guitar, backup vocals (also of Drivin' N Cryin')
- Jimbo Hart, bass, backup vocals
- Derry DeBorja, keyboard, accordion, backup vocals - (formerly of Son Volt)
- Chad Gamble, drums, backup vocals - (brother of Al Gamble)
- Amanda Shires, fiddle, backup vocals
The band's name comes from the 400 Unit, a colloquial name for the psychiatric ward of Florence, Alabama's Eliza Coffee Memorial Hospital, which is now named the Behavioral Health Center, or 1st North, and is located on the hospital's first floor. It was originally called the 400 unit because it was in a separate building from the main building's 3-story hospital. After renovation in the 1980s, the name was changed.
Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit's eponymous album was released on February 17, 2009, on Lightning Rod Records. Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit was Isbell's second solo release and his first release with The 400 Unit. Matt Pence of Centro-Matic co-produced and engineered the record, as well as playing drums on the record.
Isbell and the 400 Unit released their second album, 'Here We Rest', on April 12, 2011, on Lightning Rod Records. The album was produced and recorded by the band. The song "Alabama Pines" was named Song of the Year at the 2012 Americana Music Awards.
On March 13, 2017, Isbell announced a new album with the 400 Unit, The Nashville Sound. The album was released on June 16, 2017.
Jason Isbell has stated on the importance of his northern Alabama roots: "I definitely don’t feel like I would be the musician that I am, or the type of songwriter, had I not come from that particular place," he says now. "The soul music that came out of there, and a lot of the soul-influenced rock and roll and country music that came out of the studios in north Alabama in the '60s and '70s had a big influence on me." Jason said that working at FAME Studios was everything to him, that it was a gateway towards the music that he wanted to play. In addition to citing Neil Young as a big influence, Jason is a fan of singer-songwriter Ben Howard and guitarist Blake Mills.