NANCI GRIFFITH’S The Loving Kind (Rounder), Set for Release on June 9th
CD is seminal singer-songwriter’s 19th album and first Album
of all-new material since 2005
Los Angeles, California – Nanci Griffith’s classic sound – folk/country melodies built around stories that aren’t afraid to tackle big subjects all delivered with the artist’s signature vocal style – returns in full bloom on THE LOVING KIND, her new album scheduled for release on June 9th from Rounder Records. Featuring thirteen new songs, THE LOVING KIND is Nanci’s most politically outspoken release in years, and underscores her stature as one of the music world’s most esteemed singer-songwriters.
The release of THE LOVING KIND will be accompanied by a U.S. tour.
With a recording and touring history that stretches back more than two decades, Griffith has established, what Madison Avenue would call, a “brand.” But her signature music is much more about art than commerce, which is why her fan base has remained incredibly loyal – fans include contemporaries such as Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, and Emmy Lou Harris, all of whom have either recorded her songs or insisted she record theirs.
With her last CD (the critically-acclaimed Ruby’s Torch), a torch song tribute, THE LOVING KIND is her first studio album of original and contemporary cover material since 2005’s Hearts In Mind. The title track, emblematic of the album’s story songs, refers to Loving v. Virginia, the 1967 landmark civil rights case that once and for all ended the ban on interracial marriages in the U.S. Richard and Mildred Loving were a married white man and black woman who were forced to leave their native state of Virginia under threat of arrest because of the state’s Jim Crow law prohibiting marriages between different races.
“I read Mildred Loving’s obituary in The New York Times last year and it just floored me,” recalls Griffith. Tragically, Richard died in a tragic car accident just months after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in the couple’s favor. “She never remarried and in her last interview, just before she passed away, she expressed hope that their case would eventually be the open door to the legalization of same sex marriage.”
Another track on the album, “Not Innocent Enough,” is also built around a political and legal controversy, namely the celebrated death row case of Philip Workman, who was convicted in 1981 of killing a Memphis police officer. Despite new evidence that proved his innocence, which he always maintained through his five scheduled execution dates, Workman was put to death by the State of Tennessee on May 9, 2007. Fellow singer-songwriter John Prine joins Griffith on this track, backed by a chorus that also includes tunesmiths Elizabeth Cook and Todd Snider.
“I started writing this song long before Philip was executed, but just couldn’t finish it until that final injustice took place,” says Griffith.
On a more personal note, “Up Against The Rain,” co-written with her longtime collaborator Charley Stefl, is Griffith’s tribute to her mentor, country-folk singer and poet Townes Van Zandt. But on a broader level, the song “could be for anyone’s hero and with me, I also lost my dear, beautiful stepfather just before Christmas of last year, and we recorded the song the day I retuned from his funeral in Austin. So, it’s very close to my heart.”
THE LOVING KIND was produced by Pat McInerney and Thomm Jutz and features McInerney on drums and percussion, Jutz on guitar, Matt McKenzie on bass, Barry Walsh on keyboards, Shad Cobb on fiddle and Fats Kaplin on pedal steel guitar, mandolin and fiddle.