Musical Elective Of The Week

February 12, 2009 | Blog

The Musical Elective Of The Week is Tift Merritt.

Tift is a 34-year-old singer/songwriter based in North Carolina. Her music is in the alt-country vein, although her sophomore album went in a decidedly rock and soul direction. Tift’s got a distinctive, pure voice that lends a warmth and forthrightness to her lyrics.

Tift released her first solo album only in 2002 and already has three studio albums and one live album under her belt. Pretty good work. Her debut album, Bramble Rose, was widely acclaimed, making both Time Magazine‘s and The New Yorker‘s top 10 lists for that year. My favorite is 2005’s upbeat Tambourine, featuring the tracks “Good Hearted Man,” “Stray Paper,” “Write My Ticket,” and “Shadow In The Way.” Tambourine was nominated for a Grammy for Country Album of The Year even though I think it is the least “country” of her three studio albums. Go figure. Last year, Tift released Another Country, with the tracks “Broken,” “Keep You Happy,” and “I Know What I’m Looking For Now.” Popmatters calls her latest album “nothing short of stunning in its candor, simplicity, and grace.”

She’ll be releasing a new live acoustic album, Buckingham Solo, on February 24, 2009. Keep an eye out for it! She’ll also be touring through the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic in spring and will be part of the Bonnaroo festival this summer.

Check out more at her official web site.

I wish I were a freeway laid out clearer than a bright day.
I’d run wide open down this causeway like brand new
Singing louder than the whole block, all my love would be a straight shot
Night would dream the dreams that I got, and so would you.

But I’m broken and I don’t understand
What is broken falls into place once again.
Hand of kindness, come and gather me in like a rainstorm

–“Broken,” Another Country (2008)

Click here for past Musical Electives of the Week

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