New from David Crosby + Michael McDonald: Stream “River Rise,” New Crosby Album ‘For Free’ Coming 7/23

Rock Cellar Magazine StaffCategories:Latest News

Rock Cellar Magazine

On July 23, the prolific David Crosby will release a new album titled For Free, shortly before his 80th birthday on Aug. 14.

The official album announcement declares: “With a transcendent quality that lies somewhere between poetry, prayer, and wild-eyed rock & roll, For Free yet again reveals Crosby’s rare gift for imparting essential truths with both undeniable warmth and a profound sense of wonder.”

Officially detailed on Thursday, the news came with the premiere of “River Rise,” a lively track finding “Croz” joined by Michael McDonald, who co-wrote the song with Crosby’s son, James Raymond:

For Free will be Crosby’s first release since 2018’s Here If You Listen, as well as his first record since selling his catalog (solo, the Byrds, CSN & CSNY) to Irving Azoff’s Iconic Artists Group in early March.

In addition to McDonald, the new album features collaborations with Raymond, Sarah Jarosz, Donald Fagen of Steely Dan as well as recent collaborators including saxophonist Steve Tavaglione and drummer Steve DiStanislao.

Its title comes from the title track, a cover of Joni Mitchell‘s 1970 song from her album Ladies of the Canyon, which David Crosby reimagines for this new project (featuring Jarosz):

“Joni’s the greatest living singer/songwriter, and ‘For Free’ is one of her simplest,” said Crosby in a statement. “It’s one of my favorite songs because I love what it says about the spirit of music and what compels you to play.”

Click here to pre-order For Free from our Rock Cellar Store

It’s worth noting that in 1973, Crosby and the Byrds released a cover of “For Free” on their 12th and final studio album, Byrds:

The song “Rodriguez for a Night” was written by Fagen, and Crosby seems especially excited about that one.

“It’s really fucking good, man,” he told Rolling Stone last year. “I’m so honored he gave us a set of words. I’ve been asking him for a couple of years. He started to trust us, I think. It took a long time, but he gave us a set of words that are really wonderful and we just wrote the shit out of them.”

The album’s artwork features a cover portrait painted by Crosby’s friend, Joan Baez, as well.

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