It’s been six long years since Patty Griffin, the Americana sweetheart with the powerful voice, released an album of mainly new material (though she won a Grammy in 2010 for Downtown Church, her album of gospel covers. On May 7, she released her new album, American Kid, which she co-produced along with Austin’s Craig Ross).
Griffin came up with the tunes, many of which are about her family, years earlier, as she dealt with the loss her father while travelling the highways between Austin and Nashville. She let the songs rest a bit and toured with beau Robert Plant’s outfit Band of Joy. Last year she finally felt ready to record the tunes, leaning toward a rawer sound on this release than on her previous works.
Standouts include the piano ballad “Irish Boy,” a tribute to her dad; “Get Ready Marie,” about the lascivious way her grandfather was looking at her grandmother in their wedding photo; and the moody and haunting “Ohio,” a duet with Plant.
At her show on June 25th at the Wiltern, you can expect original material on the New West Records release along with a few favorites from her seven previous albums. Newcomer Max Gomez opens the show.