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Steve Earle — Transcendental Blues
Album: Transcendental Blues
Avg rating:
6.9

Your rating:
Total ratings: 1554









Released: 2000
Length: 3:45
Plays (last 30 days): 2
In the darkest hour of the longest night
If it was in my power I'd step into the light
Candles on the altar, penny in your shoe
Walk upon the water - transcendental blues.

Happy ever after 'til the day you die
Careful what you ask for, you don't know 'til you try
Hands are in your pockets, starin' at your shoes
Wishin' you could stop it - transcendental blues.

If I had it my way, everything would change
Out here on this highway the rules are still the same
Back roads never carry you where you want 'em to
They leave you standin' there with them ol'
Transcendental Blues.
Comments (185)add comment
 grhorn wrote:
RIP Justin Townes Earle 1982-2020
 
A sad day for everyone, but especially for Steve and family. 
RIP Justin Townes Earle 1982-2020
I definitely didn't experience transcendence with this song...
 bam23 wrote:
I was looking forward to Steve Earle's performance at Hardly Strictly Bluegrass last year. No more. The band was loud and not surely made a lot of noise. But not very interesting. I couldn't convince my wife that they were worth staying for. Nor myself. As a bonus, as we left we encountered Gillan Welch and Dave Rawlings playing with Robin Hitchcock. It completely made up for my disappointment.
 
Okay, Not Sure.  Whatever you say.


 SmackDaddy wrote:
This made realize we never hear the Supersuckers on here. That sucks.
 

And that's a shame.
Just so good...saw his play in St. John's, Canada in 2018.  Fantastic show.
This electric guitar distorted sound gets me far inside !
Transcendental is the right way to name it.
It just one of those "Something about it" type songs!
Quadruple Plus Good ++++
This made realize we never hear the Supersuckers on here. That sucks.
 idiot_wind wrote:
This is a very goo album. He sounds just a little like Uncle Tupelo bands. Could have cross pollinations.  

 
I actually saw Son Volt open for Steve Earle in Asheville back around 2000, so you're probably onto something.
Time to play Rose coloured glasses by Blue Rodeo
This is a very goo album. He sounds just a little like Uncle Tupelo bands. Could have cross pollinations.  
 crogers wrote:
Plodding beat, repetitive chord progression, unimaginative arrangement, annoying vocalization, uninspired lyrics.  What's not to like?  Solid 3.

 
I just disagree with every point made, as is my right.

8 from me
I was looking forward to Steve Earle's performance at Hardly Strictly Bluegrass last year. No more. The band was loud and not surely made a lot of noise. But not very interesting. I couldn't convince my wife that they were worth staying for. Nor myself. As a bonus, as we left we encountered Gillan Welch and Dave Rawlings playing with Robin Hitchcock. It completely made up for my disappointment.
This song always reminds me of that realization that sometimes comes upon you at 3 a.m. after a very long evening.
 oldfart48 wrote:

STEVE HAD HIS PROBLEMS , HOWEVER HIS WORST NEVER CAME CLOSE TO THE TRASH THAT SCREAMING JUNKY SHAT AT US....

 
Screaming Junky? Like Jimi, Janis, Byrd, Stan Getz, Lady Day, Johnny, Belushi, PSH and yes Kurt? Seems like good company to me.
Kinda Byrd-like, maybe ?
 
 crogers wrote:
Plodding beat, repetitive chord progression, unimaginative arrangement, annoying vocalization, uninspired lyrics.  What's not to like?  Solid 3.

 
Oh please, you're trying too hard. Are you one of his ex-wives?
Awesome Billy Boy Happy New Year to you too, I knew this was coming at some point today. Nothing changes on New Year's Day!
Plodding beat, repetitive chord progression, unimaginative arrangement, annoying vocalization, uninspired lyrics.  What's not to like?  Solid 3.
You could still snap back.
 Peter_Bradshaw wrote:

.... yes why all the hate!!?
 
Advanced age; eye sight poor; mental elasticity almost all gone.

How am I doing? 
Any opinions on his oxycontin blues? I thought it was kind of a (rare) letdown... but wouldn't mind hearing it anyway
 oldfart48 wrote:

STEVE HAD HIS PROBLEMS , HOWEVER HIS WORST NEVER CAME CLOSE TO THE TRASH THAT SCREAMING JUNKY SHAT AT US....

 
.... yes why all the hate!!?
 oldfart48 wrote:

STEVE HAD HIS PROBLEMS , HOWEVER HIS WORST NEVER CAME CLOSE TO THE TRASH THAT SCREAMING JUNKY SHAT AT US....

 
Why all the hate? 
This song is beautifully trippy.
 (former member) wrote:
I always think this is Nirvana. And that's not a bad thing.

 
STEVE HAD HIS PROBLEMS , HOWEVER HIS WORST NEVER CAME CLOSE TO THE TRASH THAT SCREAMING JUNKY SHAT AT US....
 tulfan wrote:
...he sounds like a grad of the Bob Dylan School of Vocal Expression...
 
THAT WOULD BE A GOOD THING...{#Dance}
 hiromike wrote:

you might hear similar content on KGSR in Austin TX,  but it is hardly a regular radio station.  
KPIG
 Freedom California

BillG's almamater, not a " regular " station, just the only comerical station left that plays real music. in Cal.{#Dance} altho they have been guted by corporate idiots....{#Evil}
 hiromike wrote:

you might hear similar content on KGSR in Austin TX,  but it is hardly a regular radio station.  

 
 
kpig freedom california
The music has been good for me this arvo but I only heard Passenger for the first time last Thursday and I am hooked especially on the album All the little lights which I absolutely must listen to now.  Sorry for the out of context intrusion Earle fans - pretty cool song by the way.
 Poacher wrote:
So glad this is back on the playlist again. It was playing here when I first joined back in errrr. . . whenever. . . and mede a real impression on my young mind at the time :)

Where else would you hear this kind of stuff on a radio station eh?

Lovely stuff.

 

 
you might hear similar content on KGSR in Austin TX,  but it is hardly a regular radio station.  

 
Does no one notice this song is skipping and playing the same portion over and over?
 Misterfixit wrote:


Don't think so.  I heard he turned up on the wrong end of a cleverly concealed 20mm chain gun while he was driving up the San Diego Freeway in one of those electric ecofreek cars road hogging in front of some maniac's original Diesel Hummer with the special hood mounted Road-Rage Target Defenestration Unit.

 
Fantasy, Rumor or Confession, Misterfixit? Perhaps all three if you've been particularly enterprising. 
{#Meditate}
 meinthecorner wrote:
Steve's one artist I choose to follow because he is remarkable. Not only did he basically pick himself up out of his own grave early on, but, he manages to make me laugh, cry and dance with every album of his that I own. That, to me, is some special talent!!
 
Yes! Thank you kindred spirit!
{#Dance}
  
 sronis wrote:
He sings like he's constipated.
 
I believe that's the origin of the song title.
...he sounds like a grad of the Bob Dylan School of Vocal Expression...
So glad this is back on the playlist again. It was playing here when I first joined back in errrr. . . whenever. . . and mede a real impression on my young mind at the time :)

Where else would you hear this kind of stuff on a radio station eh?

Lovely stuff.

 
Bad vocals doesn't normally bother me.  I like Jerry Garcia, Leonard Cohen, Dylan, etc... But the vocals on this are like fingers on a chalkboard.
 Cynaera wrote:

The man went through a lot, but he kept his soul. I love "Transcendental Blues," and also "The Revolution Starts Now."  I'll join your committee - um, what's our prime directive?{#Mrgreen}
 
Um, to get this song a higher rating? And, I'm joining too!
Steve's one artist I choose to follow because he is remarkable. Not only did he basically pick himself up out of his own grave early on, but, he manages to make me laugh, cry and dance with every album of his that I own. That, to me, is some special talent!!
He sings like he's constipated.
Nice sound!
 dmax wrote:
I always think this is Nirvana. And that's not a bad thing.
 
Yes it is.
Now how about something from Jim White's Transnormal Skiperoo !?
I always think this is Nirvana. And that's not a bad thing.
 On_The_Beach wrote:
Nice raw guitar sound.
 

and percussion

 rdo wrote:

This song should have a higher rating.  I am thinking about forming a committee.


 
The man went through a lot, but he kept his soul. I love "Transcendental Blues," and also "The Revolution Starts Now."  I'll join your committee - um, what's our prime directive?{#Mrgreen}
I live in a place where music is pretty cut and dried - we get the top forty. There was once a wonderful station, pioneered by Ken Sutherland and Rich Bryan, and it was called Coyote FM. I had my first taste of Steve Earle's "Transcendental Blues" and "The Revolution Starts Now." Lots of other stuff, too. It was a little piece of paradise, in its day. Coyote bites the dust August 1, after having changed formats several times in an effort to survive.

Salutations to the soon-to-be defunct Coyote FM. When you were good, you gave me Charlie Sexton, Arc Angels, "Bridge of Sighs," and Jessie Colin-Young. When you were bad, you still gave me "Seagull" by Bad Company and "Conquistador" by Procol Harum.

I'll miss you. Dammit.

Three in a row for the left of center.  Yeah!!!!!
Steve Earle and the Heartbreakers :)


There is so much going on sonically in this song. It's like an auditory massage.
Nice raw guitar sound.
 rdo wrote:

This song should have a higher rating.  I am thinking about forming a committee.

 
Yeah, committees have done a lot of good in the world. {#Rolleyes}
I think Steve's voice on this is horrifying. I'm thinking about seeing a therapist...it seems like PTSD. {#Stop}
Ah, thanks! I like Steve Earle's music. ^..^~
Yes, this is one of Steve Earles better efforts!{#Clap}
Good stuff!

This song should have a higher rating.  I am thinking about forming a committee.


 philbertr wrote:
Waiting for another negative comment from Excelsior.  Should be coming up any minute now.....
 

Don't think so.  I heard he turned up on the wrong end of a cleverly concealed 20mm chain gun while he was driving up the San Diego Freeway in one of those electric ecofreek cars road hogging in front of some maniac's original Diesel Hummer with the special hood mounted Road-Rage Target Defenestration Unit.

megisi wrote:
This album is incandescent, brilliantly conceived and executed, thoroughly engaging, allathat ... I was a Steve Earle fan before it, but my respect for his artistry went to a new height when I heard Transcendental Blues.

10


I was trying to articulate how I felt about this song ... thanks!


 MortimerS wrote:
Vocals: bad parody of Bob.
Lyrics: Banal
Melody: Nonexistent.
2
And not excelsior, I am more average than that.
 
I guess that just proves that good music is synergistic!

 megisi wrote:
This album is incandescent, brilliantly conceived and executed, thoroughly engaging, allathat ... I was a Steve Earle fan before it, but my respect for his artistry went to a new height when I heard Transcendental Blues.

10

 

Excellent comment.

I saw Steve's son, Justin Townes Earle, in S.F. the other night. It looks like the Earle's are gonna be around for a while. {#Clap}
This album is incandescent, brilliantly conceived and executed, thoroughly engaging, allathat ... I was a Steve Earle fan before it, but my respect for his artistry went to a new height when I heard Transcendental Blues.

10

 ppak wrote:
Steve plays "Walon", a recovering addict on "The Wire", his words of wisdom on this show are stunning, thanks David Simon, thanks Steve!
 

I am still going through withdrawal over the discontinuation of The Wire and The Sopranos.  The Golden Age of TV is over for the moment.
There is a musical connection here, with Steve Van Zandt starring in the Sopranos.
Vocals: bad parody of Bob.
Lyrics: Banal
Melody: Nonexistent.
2
And not excelsior, I am more average than that.
Waiting for another negative comment from Excelsior.  Should be coming up any minute now.....
Steve Earle's still rockin', thank you RP!

 Excelsior wrote:
Ugh. Can this guy hit even ONE note?
 
I'll bet you he's made more money singing than you have. {#Wink}
My favorite Steve Earle tune, right here on RP. Thanks Bill.
Really, really like Steve Earle. Love this one particularly.
As a follow-up I would like to hear Transcendental Express from Can (from their Unlimited Edition album), the only totally underrated group on this channel - for i NEVER hear them on RP.

So why not kick out 2raumwohnung and Nena, and put on some Can instead?

sounds like when you play a record backwards to hear a hidden message.
I'd have the blues too, if my singing was this horrid.
Unintelligible and off pitch.  A waste of several minutes.
You hear about those folks who chew tobacco all their lives, how their lips rot out? Sounds like that happened to this guy.
Ugh. Can this guy hit even ONE note? :doh:
Oh hell no. Channel is getting changed RIGHT NOW.
I know this song, but not this version (even though it appears to be the original). AllMusic is not being helpful...anyone know who's covered it?
Saw him in Austin the other night, with his latest wife. Good show.
Just thought y'all might like to know--this ENTIRE album is awesome!
Great song; Great Album: Great guy :guitarist:
What's transcendent is this song.
Go Steve
ppak wrote:
Steve plays "Walon", a recovering addict on "The Wire", his words of wisdom on this show are stunning, thanks David Simon, thanks Steve!
I wondered if anyone, else noticed that! Great show, great artist! Great album this, too! And a great patriot, Steve Earle, in the true sense of the word, not a flag waver, but one who examines the state of the country he loves, and is unafraid to question or criticize it, or even disagree vehemently. As was Martin Luther King, among others, for instance. Merely supporting it through bad periods is not enough, your country needs you to be vigilant when it comes to true government and democracy. Or else it'll just keep making bad decisions.
Just saw him in Winnipeg. Great show!!
Steve plays "Walon", a recovering addict on "The Wire", his words of wisdom on this show are stunning, thanks David Simon, thanks Steve!
Wow. Where else are you gonna hear a set like Gillian Welch>Yann Tiersen>Moby>Steve Earle ? That is just too damn good for the hit parade to handle.
go_ski_mully wrote:
That woman is the folk singing legend / icon Emmylou Harris!
Actually it's not. It's his sister Stacey. Emmylou doesn't appear on Transcendental Blues (although she may on another of his records)
LOVE Steve Earle....other songs more than this one perhaps, but certainly one of the finest songwriters of our generation.
Crank It X's 2 Now if I could hear some Pb Dirigible w/ a marching warsaw oh :cool:
upgraded from 6 to 7 to 8 over the course of the song. Nice.
Crank it!
More_Cowbell wrote:
radiozep, but can you like a song, but not like what the lyrics are about? Do don't have to agree with an artist to like his/her work.
radiozep wrote:
Good comment. I was at a Roger Waters concert this spring and he went off on a bit a political rant after a new song or two about Bush and Co. The guy behind me started yelling 'Shut up and play the music', yet this guy was cheering and yelling after 'Us and Them'. Did the guy ever listen to the lyrics??
radiozep, but can you like a song, but not like what the lyrics are about? You don't have to agree with an artist to like his/her work.
nigelr wrote:
Love your comment! I can only offer that i believe music was a far more powerful unifying force back in those days. Today I think people are generally more cynical and self-interested, and Dylans/Baezes/Seegars etc are perhaps thinner on the ground.
Much thinner indeed, in the USA, Poland, and Australia. Sad but true.
It's called the First Amendment. Even if you don't agree with him...
"Damn!! Out the back, quick! They're here!" "Who?" "The Illuminati"...
meloman wrote:
Noting all the "get off the soapbox" comments, all I can say is what a generation of wusses. Oh, if you play music, Mr. Musician, then you can't touch political issues or criticize the government? Why not? Christ, if this generation had been around in the ‘60's, you'd have run off Dylan, Joan Baez, Phil Ochs, Tom Paxton and the US would still be stuck in Vietnam, Blacks would still be shufflin', and women would still be ass-deep in Betty Crocker land. Art has many roles, and one of them is to provoke change, not just entertain. Sensitive souls, get beyond the ranting and anger and hear the message.
Good comment. I was at a Roger Waters concert this spring and he went off on a bit a political rant after a new song or two about Bush and Co. The guy behind me started yelling 'Shut up and play the music', yet this guy was cheering and yelling after 'Us and Them'. Did the guy ever listen to the lyrics??
meloman wrote:
Noting all the "get off the soapbox" comments, all I can say is what a generation of wusses. Oh, if you play music, Mr. Musician, then you can't touch political issues or criticize the government? Why not? Christ, if this generation had been around in the ‘60's, you'd have run off Dylan, Joan Baez, Phil Ochs, Tom Paxton and the US would still be stuck in Vietnam, Blacks would still be shufflin', and women would still be ass-deep in Betty Crocker land. Art has many roles, and one of them is to provoke change, not just entertain. Sensitive souls, get beyond the ranting and anger and hear the message.
Love your comment! I can only offer that i believe music was a far more powerful unifying force back in those days. Today I think people are generally more cynical and self-interested, and Dylans/Baezes/Seegars etc are perhaps thinner on the ground.
Noting all the "get off the soapbox" comments, all I can say is what a generation of wusses. Oh, if you play music, Mr. Musician, then you can't touch political issues or criticize the government? Why not? Christ, if this generation had been around in the ‘60's, you'd have run off Dylan, Joan Baez, Phil Ochs, Tom Paxton and the US would still be stuck in Vietnam, Blacks would still be shufflin', and women would still be ass-deep in Betty Crocker land. Art has many roles, and one of them is to provoke change, not just entertain. Sensitive souls, get beyond the ranting and anger and hear the message.
being a musician doesn't meant you know you ax from a hole in the ground, but people pay to hear what this guy says and plays, so he's earned some sort of right to get up on stage and speak out, which most Americans don't because they are alas, apathetic . . .
C57BL6 wrote:
i am not a huge steve earle fan (though i am a big townes vz fan so i like steve earle); anyways i bought this album. i would submit that every song is excellent, including a nice duet with a woman, i thought it was his wife, but must be sister. and a great bluegrass tune. and an irish tune. all with his seasoned and hard-wrought sensibility. buy it! :cheers:
That woman is the folk singing legend / icon Emmylou Harris!
Besides which, he's wrong if he called us lazy. We're not lazy. We're apathetic. There's a difference.
Rickvee wrote:
Yeah the guy's a total prick. Not surprising he's been married so many times. I happen to agree with Steve regarding abolition of the death penalty but he's such a jerk-off when he talks about it I'm prone to wanting to disagree with him. He's made more enemies than people he's converted I'll bet.
Yeah, it's awful how much he gives a shit. He needs to just shut up and sing. We're lazy, but so what? Lots of people are lazy. We just want to be entertained and not have to think. Is that so wrong?
MCKY wrote:
Yes-while everyone is entitled to a political opinin, I resented paying for all the political talk in the last live album. But as a musican Steve's great-Transcendental Blues is what the Beatles would have sounded like if they'd grow up in Nashville rathern than Liverpool!
Yeah, you have to hate it when public figures take a meaningful stance on issue of the day rather than just entertaining us, which is all we really want. If we wanted to hear a bunch of crap about important issues we'd read one of those word-page-thingies. Books or whatever they're called.
dmax wrote:
and, therefore, you don't purchase insurance of any kind?
suppose he doesn't, what is your point?
Politics aside it's good to hear 2 Steve Earle songs in the same day. Telephone Road was on this morning.
MCKY wrote:
Yes-while everyone is entitled to a political opinin, I resented paying for all the political talk in the last live album. But as a musican Steve's great-Transcendental Blues is what the Beatles would have sounded like if they'd grow up in Nashville rathern than Liverpool!
z Very interesting comment.
Stefen wrote:
I'm troubled to hear of the musical artist's ravings, but as far as the song is concerned, it's good.
Yes-while everyone is entitled to a political opinin, I resented paying for all the political talk in the last live album. But as a musican Steve's great-Transcendental Blues is what the Beatles would have sounded like if they'd grow up in Nashville rathern than Liverpool!
I'm troubled to hear of the band member's ravings, but as far as the song is concerned, it's good.
ty wrote:
I saw Steve Earle in a small theatre in Colorado just before the 2004 presidential election. While he was very fired-up, his singing was incoherent, and his internal rage made a mess of the show. He released his frustration with the current administration at his fans by repeatedly swearing at us, and calling us "fucking lazy" for not voting and not protesting. I like Steve Earle's music. I am not a wealthy industrialist who has sold congress and the presidency and shipped Amercia's jobs to foreign countries. I also share some of Steve's sadness and anger with the direction the US government has taken us, but I guess he didn't know that when he was yelling at me. I bet there were very few neo-conservatives in his audience, but he attacked us like he was performing at the Republican Convention. And when he broke a string during "Jerusalem", I worried that the blood vessels in his lungs or brain were not up to the task, or that he might kill his guitar tuner. Steve Earle could be a powerful voice if he would learn from the great revolutionary speakers that unified people rather than insulting them. It might also help if he would open his mouth when he sings. Lighten up, man. I voted.
Yeah the guy's a total prick. Not surprising he's been married so many times. I happen to agree with Steve regarding abolition of the death penalty but he's such a jerk-off when he talks about it I'm prone to wanting to disagree with him. He's made more enemies than people he's converted I'll bet.
Geecheeboy wrote:
I love this song, but wonder if the rest of the album is worth it. Usually the single best of any cd shows up here on RP. Any casual fans of Steve Earle have any advice about the cd as a whole? BTW I love his sister, Stacey Earle. Wonder how she would be received on RP. I could upload some of her work. Think I should? Remember I am sensitive and cry easily.
yes yes yes is the answer, it is another great Steve Earl CD, solid numbers throughout! ...and Stacey is great isn't she, I was introduced to her at a local folk festival in Orillia, Ontario and now have all her albums and see her whenever she comes to town!
Geecheeboy wrote:
I love this song, but wonder if the rest of the album is worth it. Usually the single best of any cd shows up here on RP. Any casual fans of Steve Earle have any advice about the cd as a whole? BTW I love his sister, Stacey Earle. Wonder how she would be received on RP. I could upload some of her work. Think I should? Remember I am sensitive and cry easily.
i am not a huge steve earle fan (though i am a big townes vz fan so i like steve earle); anyways i bought this album. i would submit that every song is excellent, including a nice duet with a woman, i thought it was his wife, but must be sister. and a great bluegrass tune. and an irish tune. all with his seasoned and hard-wrought sensibility. buy it! :cheers:
birdland wrote:
Your collective attention please. This is no longer humorous. It was once. About 1998. Thank you. Please resume speed.
HUH? I am sorry, but you are wrong. "More Cowbell" will ALWAYS be funny. FOREVER.
coding_to_music wrote:
Your collective attention please. This is no longer humorous. It was once. About 1998. Thank you. Please resume speed.
I love this song, but wonder if the rest of the album is worth it. Usually the single best of any cd shows up here on RP. Any casual fans of Steve Earle have any advice about the cd as a whole? BTW I love his sister, Stacey Earle. Wonder how she would be received on RP. I could upload some of her work. Think I should? Remember I am sensitive and cry easily.
WonderLizard wrote:
Steve Earle - Transcendental Blues Moby - My Weakness Brilliant segue.
I agree. I thought the only place Steve Earle ever followed Moby was on my iPod. :meditate:
Steve Earle - Transcendental Blues Moby - My Weakness Brilliant segue.
str8nochaser wrote:
Crap. This guy used to be good...back when he was all messed up on drugs and booze and not such a freakin' socialist downer. Hand over the barbituates, please.
No gender-no birthdate. Whatcha tryin' to hide? Or is it a lack of skills? Chemical induced perhaps? Why you think it's called dope? BTW - I spent 20+ yrs gooned-out in addictions. Still judgemental as all git-out but getting better. The damage is still apparent. Please, get help or take as many barbituates as you can possibly get your grubby little paws on - take them ALL AT ONCE - washed down by chugging at least a fifth of JD; no, wait, make that the cheap store-brand. More fitting