April may or may not be the cruelest month, but in 2012 it’s also Wainwright month! Both Loudon III and his son Rufus have albums due out — Loudon’s archly-titled Older Than My Old Man Now came out Tuesday, while Rufus just released an excellent Black Cab Session in anticipation of Out of the Game, which drops May 1st. It can’t be all that often that father and son have released albums within two weeks of each other, and the coincidence got us thinking about some of the most impressive family legacies in music, starting with the Wainwright/McGarrigle clan and encompassing everything from country music to Afrobeat and Indian classical music. Check out our selections after the jump.
The Wainwright/McGarrigle clan
If you believe that musical ability gets passed down in the genes, then it was pretty much inevitable that the union of Loudon Wainwright III and Kate McGarrigle would bear musical fruit. Loudon was (and remains) a prolific songwriter, while Kate and her sister Anna formed a well-respected folk duo, playing together for some 35 years until Kate’s death in 2010. The couple divorced in 1978, but by then Kate had given birth to Rufus and Martha, both of whom were, um, immortalized in song by their father — Martha with “Pretty Little Martha” and Rufus with a breastfeeding ditty entitled, irony of ironies, “Rufus is a Tit Man.”