Nearly shedding a tear over this one. Jason Isbell, the youngest member of the Drive-By Truckers, has announced he's left the band to pursue a solo career. He's already on the road, swinging through the Midwest and Northeast (no DC-area stop) as we speak, and hopefully his appetite for the road will be every bit as insatiable as his former band's.
As for the reasons why he quit, message board rumors are suggesting Isbell and DBT bassist Shonna Tucker are in the process of a divorce. He joined in the middle of the Southern Rock Opera tour, and Tucker joined for some of the Decoration Day touring. The Truckers have always pursued solo acts to some degree, and, however you slice it, it doesn't seem like he's leaving because of disagreements with Patterson Hood or Mike Cooley, but who knows. We're behind Isbell wherever his career should take him, and his new tunes (especially "Dress Blues") reveal an unaltered musical trajectory.
To read Patterson's heartfelt letter of explanation, go here.
Jason Isbell - Various Songs (stream)