On The Nashville Sound, Jason Isbell grapples with the racist legacy of a shifting south

Jason Isbell had the shifting fabric of the south on his mind when he wrote the songs on his new album, The Nashville Sound (Southeastern), and his observations have only become more resonant over the past year—to say nothing of the past few weeks. On “White Man’s World” the narrator indicts himself for passively condoning racist attitudes: “I’m a white man looking in a black man’s eyes / Wishing I’d never been one of the guys / Who pretended not to hear another white...

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