Rediscovering Del Shannon

A 1977 cut reveals the hard-living soul of a honky-tonk shouter.

Del Shannon

The Dublin Sessions

RockBeat

Blue Fondue

Del Shannon never phoned it in. Best known for tortured early ’60s hits like “Runaway” and “Hats Off to Larry,” the Michigan-bred singer-songwriter combined the hard-living soul of a honky-tonk shouter with fiery, unpretentious rock’n’roll until his death in 1990. Collecting tracks from an abandoned album recorded in 1977, The Dublin Sessions captures Shannon at a commercial low point, but still delivering passionate performances. Among the highlights: the stomping “Best Days of My Life,” the dreamy ballad “Raylene” and a spirited take on kindred spirit Roy Orbison’s “Oh, Pretty Woman.” Some tracks feel slightly unfinished, as if awaiting one more overdub, but that lack of polish only adds to the sense of immediacy. This is a welcome discovery from an essential artist.

THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

payment methods

THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate