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Ani DiFranco called on a diverse lineup of guests, including Pete Seeger and Anais Mitchell, for her first new record in three years. Over the course of 21 studio albums in a 21-year career, DiFranco's folk-rock music has broached topics from politics to love, but has never strayed from being, as she would say, "righteous." In every sense of the word, DiFranco is the righteous rocker behind Righteous Babe records, the independent label on which she's been self-releasing albums since 1990.
DiFranco has just released a new, politically charged album, titled Which Side Are You On? The title track, a reworking of Florence Reece's union song from the 1930s, was popularized by Pete Seeger in the 1960s. DiFranco explains her motivations for the record as "testing deeper waters with the political songs... I guess I've been pushing my own boundaries of politics and art."
Here, Ani DiFranco performs live in the studio and talks to David Dye about the uncharacteristically long gap between her last album, Red Letter Year, and her new record.