Scottish singer-songwriter Gerry Rafferty, most famous for his classic 1978 single Baker Street, is to posthumously release a new album. Rest In Blue will be available from September 3, a decade after Rafferty's death from organ failure in 2011.
Rest In Blue will be the first new collection of songs from Rafferty since 2009's Life Goes On, and has been assembled from uncompleted demos by Rafferty's daughter, Martha, who stripped back the arrangements to highlight Rafferty's unique voice.
Comedian Billy Connelly, who sang in Rafferty's first band, the Scottish folk rock band The Humblebums, says "I've never heard Gerry sing so well. He never fails to amaze me."
The first single to be taken from Rest In Blue is Slow Down, which kicks off with the kind of crescendo that marked the start of Baker Street (minus the sax), before falling into a relaxed, familiar groove and travelling happily towards a soulful chorus via a melody that sounds a little like Home By The Sea by Genesis. Hear it below.
The cover art for Rest In Blue was illustrated by Rafferty's long-time collaborator and friend John Byrne, who provided the artwork for Rafferty's classic City To City and Night Owl albums.
Tracks on the album include covers of Richard & Linda Thompson’s It’s Just The Motion and a new version of his own Stuck In The Middle With You, a huge hit for Rafferty's second band, Stealer's Wheel, in 1973. The song gained a second wind after being featured in a pivotal scene in Quentin Tarantino's 1992 debut film Reservoir Dogs, but Rafferty, a man famous for his dislike of the music industry, wouldn't let it be reissued.
“His real journey was an inner spiritual one,” Martha Rafferty told Classic Rock in 2018. “He wanted to understand why we were here. I don’t think he felt as if he was shutting himself off from anything of great value. He was disillusioned with the commercial aspect of making music to sell product. He made records because he had to. He was driven to create; it’s what helped him put his inner world back in order."
Rest In Blue is available to pre-order now (opens in new tab).
Gerry Rafferty - Rest In Blue tracklist
Still In Denial
Sign Of The Times
You Are All I Want
I Still Love You
Wild Mountain Thyme
It’s Just The Motion
Look At Me Now
Dirty Old Town
Keeper Of My Soul
Stuck In The Middle With You