Throughout his career, Doe has garnered worldwide acclaim: NPR Music describes his work as "one of the warmest, most welcome voices in pop music. There's a beseeching quality to his singing that draws you in with curiosity", while American Songwriter praises, "...a winning platter of '60s inspired rock with a singer-songwriter twist". Doe calls The Westerner his "psychedelic soul record from the Arizona desert". The album features ten new tracks from Doe with guest appearances from Chan Marshall of Cat Power, Debbie Harry of Blondie, Cindy Wasserman of Dead Rock West and Tom Brosseau. The Westerner was produced by Howe Gelb (Neko Case, M. Ward), Dave Way (Fiona Apple) and Doe. The album's artwork was designed by Shepard Fairey and Aaron Huey to support Native American rights via a campaign called Protect The Sacred, with additional photography by Jim Herrington.