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Dr. John's final album available for pre-order, releases September 23

Dr. John at a studio KPLU/KNKX studio session, 2010
Justin Styer
Dr. John warms up the piano at a KNKX studio session in 2010.

Containing some of his last original songs, a nod to soulful country ballads, and duets with Willie Nelson and Aaron Neville, "Things Happen That Way" is Dr. John's last recording session.

New Orleans native Mac Rebennack took on the "Dr. John" persona in the 1960s, transforming himself into an unforgettable character steeped in the swamps and the voodoo lore of the city.

A master songwriter himself, Rebennack's appreciation for a well-written song, regardless of genre, led him to all kinds of musical collaborations and tributes.

Dr. John was recording a new album when he died of a heart attack on June 6, 2019 at age 77. His daughter, Karla Pratt, stepped in as executive producer to finish the album, "Things Happen That Way."

On the album, Dr. John offers his take on classic country ballads, gospel music and an updated version of his 1968 psychedelic voodoo song "I Walk on Guilded Splinters." The record features guitarist and producer Shane Theriot, bassist Will Lee, keyboardists Jon Cleary and David Torkanowsky, drummer Carl Nuccio, and rock group Lukas Nelson and Promise of the Real.

The original songs on the album reflect a colorful and eventful life, including "Holy Water," "Give Myself A Good Talkin' To" and "Sleeping Dogs Best Left Alone."

"Things Happen That Way," is now available for pre-order from Rounder Records, with a release date of September 23 for CD and digital download, and October 14 for the vinyl edition.

Originally from Detroit, Robin Lloyd has been presenting jazz, blues and Latin jazz on public radio for nearly 40 years. She's a member of the Jazz Education Network and the Jazz Journalists Association.