Release Date: June 15, 2017
1. The Devil's Left Hand Man
2. The Ballad Of Johnny
3. Dead Flowers
4. Ride This Train
5.Give Up The Ghost
6. The Hobo
7. Dark Hollow
All songs © 2017 Josiah Whitley Black Cap Music, ASCAP
Ride This Train, Give Up The Ghost © 2016 Josiah Whitley Black Cap Music, ASCAP
Dead Flowers © 1970 Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, Promotone
Dark Hollow © 1958 Bill Browning
Live On The Blue Plate Special EP was recorded on December 17, 2016 on The Blue Plate Special radio show, WDVX 89.9FM in Knoxville, TN. This is the first live recording of a show by Whitley and shows the early stages of his songwriting and storytelling. Recalls Whitley:
"The Blue Plate Special show was such a paradox to me. Here I was living out of a suitcase and my car, staying in guest bedrooms and the couches of friends and fans. I literally got off of a friend's couch in Nashville, shirt, jeans, boots and all and left at like four in the morning to get there on time. It was lean times. I was walking in for soundcheck wearing the same jeans and T-shirt I had worn for a week, my old denim jacket and hat that needed washed, my guitar with old strings and on the wall were pictures of notable artists that had played on the show in the past. It scared me to death! Malcolm Holcombe; I won an open mic contest by doing his version of Killing The Blues and telling a made up story. My childhood hero Marty Stuart whom I had air guitared to as a kid, Tommy Emmanuel, one of the greatest guitarists in the world who told me the year before after one of his shows, "we need songwriters. Keep working on your songs and don't give up." Rodney Crowell, Guy Clark one of my ALL TIME heroes, and so many more were on the wall staring at me when I walked on the stage. I felt like a child among men and that I had nothing to lose. I felt like I had something to prove and was nervous but I really tried hard. I can hear all of that in the recording.
When asked how he felt about the album today in his recorded repertoire he added:
"I'm still very proud of it. I love the artwork. I took that picture after a gig in Akron the following week. Looked in the guitar case which was my tip jar, and there was this picture someone drew of me and all of these $1 paper footballs. But the recording I love. The Devil's Left Hand Man, The Ballad Of Johnny and The Rolling Stones song Dead Flowers all ended up on my next album Lay Me Down In Roses. The Hobo did too! That's the version on Lay Me Down In Roses! I still love my version of Ride This Train on this. One of the best compliments I ever got was from the host Doug Lauderdale. He's had Guy Clark, Allison Kraus, and so many other of my favorite heroes. And after The Ballad Of Johnny he interviews me and says, "Now those first two songs that you did, a little movie for your ears is what that was." It still makes me smile. God rest his soul.