Roll Back The Years Album


Recorded late July / early August 1997 in Tucson, Arizona at the Barrio Viejo home of journalist, author and activist BILL CARTER, with the (then) GIANT SAND rhythm section of Bassist JOEY BURNS and Drummer JOHN CONVERTINO. John and Joey have since gone on to great acclaim as the core duo of the Tucson based band CALEXICO.

Rainer was at a high point in his recovery from a brain tumor when these sessions were recorded. The tribute album to Rainer, THE INNER FLAME had just been released, and a month earlier his triumphant concert at the Performance Center in downtown Tucson (on the eve of his final birthday) had taken place. Rainer’s long time recording engineer Cliff Eager captured these recordings, as he had the Performance Center concert, but less than a month after these sessions took place Rainer suffered the relapse that would finally claim him in November of 1997. Rainer did enter the studios at the urging of GIANT SAND front-man HOWE GELB one last time before he passed away. Those sessions were issued in 2002 as THE FARM. As a result, these session tapes lay tucked away, untouched for many years.
That fact, by all means, has nothing to do with the quality of the album at hand. ROLL BACK THE YEARS captures the sound of three highly skilled musicians caught in the act of listening to each other at the highest level. Here you will find Rainer working on some of his newest compositions, as well as a brace of tunes he loved and performed for years. Some took only one take to capture; others took up to 20 to get just right.

Lovingly restored, mixed and mastered for compact disc by Jim Blackwood at AZPM, we hope you enjoy ROLL BACK THE YEARS: Rainer Ptacek with Joey Burns and John Convertino.


released May 25, 2011

Rainer Ptacek – Dobro & National Steel Guitars, Vocals
Joey Burns – Acoustic Bass
John Convertino – Drums, Percussion

Recorded late July / early August, 1997 at Bill Carter’s house on Convent, Tucson Arizona
Original recording sessions supervised by Cliff Eager
Audio restoration & Mastering: Jim Blackwood at AZPM
Archival research, take selection & sequencing: David La Russa
Photographic restoration & Cover art: Colin La Russa

Track 5 is featured in the film Flor De Muertos

Tracks 1-6, 8, 9, 11,12 by Rainer Ptacek (© Mushed Music)
Track 7 by George Harrison/Tom Petty (© Ganga Publishing Ltd.)
Track 10 by Hal David/Paul Hampton (© Casa David/Shapiro Bernstein & Co. Inc.)
Track 13 by Dan Hill (© Daniel Hill’s Music)