Nanci Griffith

Concert Season: Who Are You Going to See?

May 24, 2009 // 31 Comments

I blame Adam Lambert for what I am about to reveal to you all: I’m headed to a Taylor Swift concert tonight. That’s right, Taylor Swift. Insidious curiosity got the better of me.

But why do I blame Lambert, you ask? Because I haven’t been listening to a whole lot of country music recently. Instead, thanks to my new, bizarre obsession with Lambert, in the past month I’ve pulled out old Queen, Bowie, Michael Jackson and Led Zeppelin. And I’ve listened to more My Chemical Romance, Pink and even Def Leppard than anything resembling country. So, of course I thought of Swift. Because, when you think of hard rock, isn’t Swift the first person who comes to mind?

A Conversation with Kathy Mattea

March 7, 2009 // 10 Comments

Kathy Mattea has long been a favorite for both the writers and readers of Country Universe. Earlier today, we had a chance to speak with Mattea about her current album, Coal, and covered many other topics along the way. Coyne: I see Coal as the culmination of what you’ve been doing musically, which has always been introspective and focuses on the bigger issues of life. But you’ve also always done a lot of public work for social justice, especially with AIDS and the environment. It seems like it all came together on one album this time around. Mattea: It’s been an evolving thing. It wasn’t intentionally that way. Interestingly, it came to me to do the album because of the Sago mine disaster.  I had just been torn up by it. My grandfathers were coal miners, and my mom worked for the United Coal Miners and my brother used to Read More

100 Greatest Women, #72: Nanci Griffith

April 23, 2008 // 3 Comments

100 Greatest Women #72 Nanci Griffith The eighties brought a mini-folk revival to Music Row, with coffeehouse artists scoring major label deals. Of this group, only Mary Chapin Carpenter went on to mainstream country success, but one of the earliest of the wave made inroads into the Americana scene before it even had that name. Nanci Griffith called her unique fusion of country and folk music “folkabilly.” Even when she was still teaching kindergarten in the seventies, she was playing Texas honky-tonks at night. She often quipped that controlling a group of kindergarten students and drunken hillbillies required the same skills. Pure folkie that she was, she soon signed a record deal with a local label.