Nikki Lane is a country girl born and raised in Greenville, South Carolina whom now resides in music city, Nashville. Yes, she plays country, but this ain’t what you hear on the radio, and in fact she has asked before, “Why can’t we just have a pop-country radio station and a country-country station?” Her music is country-country at the core. Call her an outlaw, call her a rebel, call her whatever you may like because regardless of the label she is doing something she loves to do. Her music is honest and un-wavering in doing so. Her record label New West Records recently re-released her sophomore album All or Nothin' to which she is embarking on winter tour meanwhile putting the finishing touches and working on her third album as well. The hard work is a testament to whom she is and the passion she has for what she does, and could all be contributed to where she has come from.
All or Nothin' was produced by Dan Auerbach (The Black Keys) back in 2014. She has a wide range of influences from Motown, to country, alt-rock, and punk – rock and all Auerbach did was hone in on this and shape the record while letting her be her. From the first track “Right Time” to the last the record brings country into a different light. This ain’t your four wheelin’ country-pop record. The first song has a line that goes “It’s always the right time to do wrong right,” and you don’t have to use your imagination with a song that is called “Sleep with a Stranger.” As Nikki put it in an interview on her website when talking about the record “My songs always paint a pretty clear picture of what’s been going on in my life, so this is one moody record. There’s lots of talk of misbehaving and moving on.” From the music end of things this is a record that’s not pretty and polished it’s raw and simply reflects its singer in many ways. The pedal steel in its twang, the raucous drums, the sting of the electric guitar, and the smoky whisky voice of a gal from South Carolina make this album something country could really use right now. Again Nikki Lane from a Rolling Stone interview earlier this year stated, “I’m not trying to make a pop-country hit,” she said, “I’m trying to make a pop-country killer.”
She has been gaining and reaching much success over the past few years now, and while country music welcomes their pretty stars and starlets here is a gal who is brash and not afraid to say it. A little bit of Wanda Jackson and a little bit of Patti Smith mix ‘em up and here is Nikki Lane coming to a theater near you. It is truly about as simple as that. All the while defining herself both as a musician, and as a songwriter, and carving her name into country music.
Nikki Lane will be at The Woodward Theater Tuesday, November 10th with Clear Plastic Masks to country-fy your soul. Doors are at 8p with the show starting at 9p.