Do you ever feel taken advantage of? Ever feel cheated? Chris Shiflett asks in the opening line of his new song Long, Long Year, which is reminiscent of Johnny Rotten’s well-known line. But Shiflett, the guitarist for the Foo Fighters and an alt-country songwriter, delivers the mid-tempo ballad in Long, Long Year, which is another great piece of country-rock.
Long, Long Year was recorded in Nashville with an all-star lineup of professionals, including mandolin ace Sierra Hull, steel musician Luke Schneider, and bassist Jack Lawrence of the Raconteurs. The album is more of a bittersweet memory of a failed relationship than it is a lament for a difficult 365. By moping and lurching through the months and seasons, Shiflett effectively conveys the resultant boredom. “Now I’m bumbling like a July wind,” he sings.
In Nashville in March 2021, Shiflett collaborated with producer Vance Powell to record the song. I hadn’t traveled much since the COVID lockdown, so I confess that I was a little anxious about going to work with a producer and a group of musicians I didn’t really know. We made introductions in typical Nashville fashion and then got right to work, knocking out the fundamental songs in a few hours. The team of guys Vance put together was excellent, and he was amazing at making me feel at home.
Since his 2019 album Hard Lessons, Shiflett has not released any new solo music until Long, Long Year.