If you've been paying close attention to Judd Apatow's career, you know the producer/writer/director is an ardent follower and enthusiast of musician Loudon Wainwright III, a singer-songwriter who's always managed to negotiate the tricky mix of observational wit, humor and soulful storytelling in his four-decade-long career.
Apatow cast him as Jay Baruchel's annoying, but well-meaning father on the short-lived college-set sitcom "Undeclared," and the musician was also tapped to write the songs and score to Apatow's 2007's directorial effort "Knocked Up," imbuing the dramedy with an undertone of bittersweetness which buoyantly anchored the film's comedy (an album was released in May of that year called Strange Weirdos: Music From & Inspired By Knocked Up; we recommend it).
And their collaboration hasn't ended there as Apatow is acting as a co-producer on Wainwright's upcoming five-disc box set titled, 40 Odd Years, which arrives on May 3 via Shout Factory Records.
Featuring a 40-page booklet, the set will also include an introduction the filmmaker wrote for the 87 tracks that will be spread across four discs. The fifth will consist of a live performances DVD culling over three hours of music. While a notable '60s musical figure, these days Wainwright is perhaps best known for having sired his two talented and famous musician children, Rufus and Martha Wainwright.
With a quasi "Knocked Up" spin-off in the works (following supporting characters played by Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann) perhaps Apatow will make a thematic musical connection and employ Wainwright's amusing and sometimes melancholy music once again? We can only hope. [L.A. Times]
Loudon Wainwright III - "Grey In L.A."
Loudon Wainwright III - "Daughter"
Bonus clip. Loudon Wainwright III - "The Swimming Song" (featured in Noah Baumbach's "The Squid & The Whale")