© 2024 Connecticut Public

FCC Public Inspection Files:
WEDH · WEDN · WEDW · WEDY · WNPR
WPKT · WRLI-FM · WEDW-FM · Public Files Contact
ATSC 3.0 FAQ
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

J.J. Cale: A Veteran Songwriter's 'Old Man' Music

J.J. Cale.
Courtesy of the artist
J.J. Cale.

J.J. Cale released his debut album, Naturally, in 1971. Born and raised in Oklahoma, the singer wrote songs that became big hits for Eric Clapton, Lynyrd Skynyrd and others, including "Cocaine" and "After Midnight."

"He recorded ["After Midnight"], and [it came] out about six months later," Cale says. "And I heard it on the radio, and I went, 'Oh, boy, I'm a songwriter now. I'm not an engineer or an elevator operator.' "

Those royalty checks keep coming in, so Cale doesn't have to tour or record much. But he has a new album out now, titled Roll On.

"I was a late bloomer in the music business," Cale says. "When I made [Naturally], I went, 'I'm way too old to be doing this. You know, 30 years old is really old.' So ironically, I'm doing it now — this last album, I'm 70."

Cale spoke with host Melissa Block about writing original music at 70.

"I write songs that kind of pertain to where I'm at now, and I guess it's good," Cale says. "I don't know, you know? I used to write more about sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll. I don't do that quite as much as I used to, and it's a little bit more 'old man' philosophy."

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Stand up for civility

This news story is funded in large part by Connecticut Public’s Members — listeners, viewers, and readers like you who value fact-based journalism and trustworthy information.

We hope their support inspires you to donate so that we can continue telling stories that inform, educate, and inspire you and your neighbors. As a community-supported public media service, Connecticut Public has relied on donor support for more than 50 years.

Your donation today will allow us to continue this work on your behalf. Give today at any amount and join the 50,000 members who are building a better—and more civil—Connecticut to live, work, and play.