Music

Justin Townes Earle Captures Personal Side Of Gentrification On New Record

On his latest record "Kids in the Street,” Justin Townes Earle focuses on how gentrification has taken its hold.
On his latest record "Kids in the Street,” Justin Townes Earle focuses on how gentrification has taken its hold.
Credit New West Records

Classic cars inspire classic songs, from Corvettes to Chevys to Little Deuce Coupes.

Justin Townes Earle’s song “Champagne Corolla” finds something to love in the ubiquitous Toyotas. But that playfulness and musicality and the sense that the times are a-changin’ is pervasive on his latest record “Kids in the Street.”

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Earle is the son of songwriter Steve Earle and named for his father’s mentor Townes Van Zandt.

With that legacy behind him, Justin Townes Earle has built quite a career himself.

“Kids in the Street” is his seventh album, and the first one he has recorded outside of Nashville. Yet, that city, along with Corollas, is a huge focus of the album and how gentrification has taken its hold.

On the title track, he sings, “No, those weren’t better days, but they still meant something to me when we were kids out in the street.”

“It’s a really strange thing to see everything change. And just the memories of people who lived there for years and years just wiped off the map,” said Earle in an interview with Myke Johns.

Earle performs at 8 p.m. tonight at City Winery.