Get to Know Pop Guru Nick Lowe

Six of his albums from the 1980s were recently reissued.

Nick Lowe

Nick the Knife

The Abominable Showman

Pinker and Prouder Than Previous

Party of One

Nick Lowe and His Cowboy Outfit

The Rose of England

Yep Roc

Shore Fire Media

Originally released between 1983 and 1990, these six newly reissued albums followed a particularly eventful stretch in pure pop guru Nick Lowe’s career, during which he emerged from the ranks of the British pub-rock band Brinsley Schwarz to launch a successful solo career, scored his sole American hit with 1979’s “Cruel to Be Kind” and established himself as a hot producer by working with such rising New Wave stars as Elvis Costello and The Pretenders. His excellent ’80s recordings found Lowe digging deep into all manner of roots styles, emphasizing rockabilly and country, while also drawing on everything from reggae to smart-assed novelty tunes. Newcomers to Lowe’s always satisfying oeuvre should start with The Rose of England, which features the foot-stomping gems “I Knew the Bride (When She Used to Rock and Roll)” and “7 Nights to Rock,” as well as the heartrending “She Don’t Love Nobody,” and proceed from there. Longtime fans can check out the bonus tracks on four of the six while rediscovering how smart, funny, and touching he was back then. Lowe would subsequently see his composition “(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace Love and Understanding” covered on the smash soundtrack to the schlocky movie “The Bodyguard” and continues to make fine, albeit more subdued, music today.