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Cowboy Jack Clement saw David R. Ferguson’s potential as a youngster; Johnny Cash grew to trust him deeply; John Prine went in with him on a studio space; tons of others including Sturgill Simpson and Margo Price have called on him to help shepherd the music in their heads onto tape. After four decades of absorbing what makes a recording work, the man known to friends and collaborators as Ferg finished an album of his own, on which he and a multigenerational band of ringers render songs that have stuck with him — some hits, many not — in a rich but organic fashion that recalls the work he’s done with the aforementioned laundry list of stars.

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