Somewhere on a two lane state road where speed limits are a suggestion, about 150 miles from Phoenix and 300 miles from Albuquerque, "We're Alright Now," the leadoff track to John Hiatt's 23rd album, Mystic Pinball, is blasting through my car. Each time I try to let the album play through onto the second song, I can't help but hit the repeat button -- over and over again. It's not long until I've memorized the first few verses and the chorus. The volume has now well overpowered my own voice, and weaving between the rolling meadows and red rock mountains, I sing the chorus -- a hypnotic, energizing and inspirational anthem of rebirth and reassurance, reminding us to once again, have a little faith in ourselves, each other and times to come.
The song is ultimately a simple one: the drums drive its roaring heartbeat tempo, and the Nashville-twanged garage guitars hold it together with a looping pulse. But, it's up to the audience to round out the sound -- to clap our hands, stomp our feet and sing along.