Shit news Saturday: Jason Isbell out of Drive-By Truckers

I came home last night from the bar a little sideways and read about this on the DBT mailing list. Followed a link over to Jason’s myspace page and read the blog entry everyone was referring to. It seemed real but there was no definite word from any of the power players other than a blog entry. So, I went to bed hoping it wasn’t true and that the blog entries were a joke played on Jason after he forgot to log out of myspace or something. Then this morning I woke up and there was official word from one of the power players confirming the blog entries. Jason is out of the Truckers…..for real.

Fucking sucks.

Man, 2007 has been really terrible for my very favorite bands and this is the third post of this type that I’ve done in a month. All is not lost though. DBT’s lineup has changed a lot over the years so I’m sure they’ll be fine and Jason’s solo cd comes out July 10 and judging from the samples on his myspace site he is gonna be fine as well. I wish both halves good luck and I hope they both get to Tampa/St. Pete soon. Here are my favorite DBT tracks w/Jason singing.

Drive-By Truckers – Decoration Day
Drive-By Truckers – Outfit
Drive-By Truckers – Never Gonna Change
Drive-By Truckers – Goddamn Lonely Love

As I’ve said before, I am sure there is and will be plenty of rumor and conjecture about the band and the interpersonal relationships but this site is not about that. Here is the official word as it came down from Patterson and this will probably the last mention about any of this on until the cds come out. However, If you want to vent about it or offer your version of a conspiracy theory there is a discussion thread about the whole deal over on


It’s with a wide range of emotions and feelings that I’m announcing
that we have parted ways with Jason.
The split, which I consider extremely amicable is the result of a
period of personal and artistic growth from all sides which has left us
with differing dreams and goals.

Jason joined our band, mid-tour, in the fall of 2001, shortly after the
release of our 4th album (Southern Rock Opera). His impact on the band
was immediate and profound, bringing an awe-inspiring combination of
vocal range, guitar dexterity, and amazing songwriting and leading us
into an era of creativity that has resulted in three albums that I will
be proud of for as long as I live.

Life in a band is always a delicate balancing act of personal and
musical chemistries. Having been in bands for most of my life, I still
marvel that any band stays together for longer than a year. Especially
if the band in question spends anywhere from 150-220 days a year on the
road, as our band has done since 1998. That said, I have also likened
this band to a family. A big, messy, sometimes dysfunctional one, but a
family full of love all the same. It is in this spirit that I plan on
Jason continuing to be a part of our lives wherever our roads and
dreams take us in the immediate future.

Jason is about to embark on a tour (including a leg of dates with Son
Volt) with his stellar band and will be releasing (finally) his amazing
solo album “Sirens of the Ditch” < July 10 from New West Records > . We
all are wishing him nothing but the absolute best on every step that
plays before him.

Cooley and I will have played together for 22 years this summer and DBT
is about to begin it’s 12th year of existence on the very day that we
will be going into the studio to begin recording our 8th album. Cooley
recently sent me a demo of five new songs and yesterday I demoed nine
new ones for consideration. In addition to Shonna and Brad (who is
coming up on ten years in the band) John Neff will be playing with us
full time, playing both guitar and pedal steel. John was a founding
member of the band in 96 and has already played on four of our albums
and has been on the road with us, full time for going on two years.

It is my sincere and and adamant hope that everyone will support all of
us, and by that I mean our band and Jason’s, as we deal with this
transition. Jason’s tenure in this band has been one of the greatest
things that has ever happened to me on a personal and musical level and
our love for him and his music is in no way changed or endangered by
our collective decision to move into different directions.

In addition to the upcoming THE DIRT UNDERNEATH tour and the recording
of our next album, we will also be playing some special ROCK SHOW dates
this summer and hope to do another leg or two of THE DIRT UNDERNEATH in
the fall.

As always, the bond that we have with each other, as well as with the
folks that come to our shows and listen to our records has always been
one of the things that has set this band apart. We plan to continue on
in that tradition and spirit and hope you will come with us as we
attempt to tell another tale and Rock the nights away a little while

Sincerely Yours,
Patterson Hood
Drive-By Truckers
April 6, 2007

14 thoughts on “Shit news Saturday: Jason Isbell out of Drive-By Truckers”

  1. Dammit…yeah same about that last night. Woke up, and saw it was true…it’s like our parents got a divorce or something ūüôĀ Seen both bands live, though and it’s hard to believe they managed to keep it together this long. There’s a A LOT of talent to be managed there…wish ’em the best tho

  2. the more that i talk to people about this, the more that i am not surprised. there’ve been some interesting rumors going around concerning jason and the truckers. it’s still shitty though. jason wrote some of my favorite songs on decoration day.

  3. My hubby and I were so excited to see the May 4th Santa Fe show. We were really bummed by the announcment. Outfit is my favorite song!

  4. I¬íve watched the Truckers since 1995, when they were openly mocking the people who became much of their fanbase. They were pretty much a novelty act (one could argue they still are). Anyway, they really weren¬ít shit until Isbell came along. Frankly, the pre-Isbell shows were painful to watch, and their redeeming quality in Athens, GA was that they were funny because they poked fun at rednecks and country people and country culture. Hipsters found ridiculing poor, less “educated” country folk “funny.” Patterson ain¬ít much on the guitar, and if he¬ís not screaming or narrating and greatly exaggerating a Southern accent, he ain¬ít much on vocals either. Cooley ain¬ít much on guitar either, and flat out sucks on vocals. That¬ís why they got in the habit of playing so damn loud and focusing on the novelty of their “schtick.” Then Isbell came on board with some fucking awesome guitar and, well, let¬ís just say ¬ďimproved¬Ē vocals (he ain¬ít that great a singer…helluva songwriter though) and the Truckers had a little more mainstream success thanks to a much, MUCH improved live experience courtesy of Isbell’s guitar. Anybody who saw the Truckers pre-Isbell, and post-Isbell knows that Patterson and Mike and the gang of ¬ďpseudo-rednecks¬Ē (hate to break it to ya, but they ain¬ít really country boys, folks) probably owe more to Jason Isbell and his superior musicianship than any of their melodramatic bullshit stories.

  5. David, you\’re an idiot. First of all, the band didn\’t even form until 1996, so that\’s really odd that you were seeing them in 1995. Secondly, their first two albums are nothing short of genius. Their third album – Southern Rock Opera – was universally critically acclaimed and many still consider it the best DBT album to date. Yes, Jason was a phenomenal guitar player and great singer/songwriter, but the Truckers were great before Jason, they were great with Jason, and they will be great long after Jason. The best is yet to come, I have no doubt!

  6. Jason kicks ass, but David is an idiot, especially about music. Anyone who knows him knows that.

  7. “Southern Rock Opera – was universally critically acclaimed and many still consider it the best DBT album to date.”

    i am of that camp.

  8. Who is this David person…

    And if you are David reading this…Please…Cracker, you need to get some cds and sit back and ponder over your previous statements about DBT, cause you\\\’re lacking in musical sense…That was some bullshit you said above, and I think you seriously need to get your shit together before you start knocking people\\\’s talent…On the real…

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