'Modern Sounds,' a Blast from the Past In 1985, punkers John Doe and Exene Cervenka of X teamed with guitarist Dave Alvin of the Blasters to record country and rockabilly music. Twenty years later, they're back with The Modern Sounds of the Knitters.

'Modern Sounds,' a Blast from the Past

'Modern Sounds,' a Blast from the Past

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/4951558/4951592" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

The Knitters are John Doe, Dave Alvin, Exene Cervenka, Jonny Ray Bartel and D.J. Bonebrake. hide caption

toggle caption

Three from 'Modern Sounds'

Dry River

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/4951558/4951561" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Rank Stranger

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/4951558/4951563" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Burning House of Love

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/4951558/4951565" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

If you read their band biography closely, you'll notice that The Knitters are American roots music. Why, they even conducted a recording session with Jimmie Rodgers. In 1927.

Ahem.

In reality, The Knitters have been around a while. Just not quite that long.

In 1985, John Doe and Exene Cervenka of the punk band X got together with guitarist Dave Alvin, also of X and Blasters fame, to make an album of country and rockabilly music. They named themselves The Knitters as a tribute to Pete Seeger's Weavers.

Twenty years later, Doe, Cervenka and Alvin are together again for a second record: The Modern Sounds of the Knitters. They gathered recently to tell Debbie Elliott about it.