Ben Harper: 'Best Of' Due 10/16; Busy With Natalie Maines, Rickie Lee Jones

Ben Harper will release his first career spanning Best of collection By My Side on October 16, a project that appears to signal the end of his nearly 20 year stint with the Virgin/EMI label. Inside sources tell DC that the album will contain one new song. The retrospective comes just more than a year after his last studio album Give Til It's Gone.

Harper has been busy in the producer's chair lately having worked with Rickie Lee Jones on her forthcoming covers album The Devil You Know. Harper is also in the midst of producing the longawaited new solo project from Dixie Chicks frontwoman Natalie Maines. "Ben has a studio and he’s just sort of facilitated this for me in a natural progression," Maines recently told Howard Stern. "I didn’t go in knowing what I was gonna do or that I was gonna make an album. I was just gonna go in and make some music, and it’s been fun." The new album, said to be "eight songs deep", will hopefully be completed for release in the spring of 2013, according to Maines.