road trip music: American northwest
Stephanie Davis is a woman who really gets Montana, her native state, and the celebrations and struggles that make up life in the contemporary western states, Davis has had success in Nashville, but it wasn’t her place to stay: Montana called her home. Listen to her album Crocus in the Snow and you will learn about the American west, a west you may just have glimpsed around the edges of popular images and books on the subject.
Rosalie Sorrels lives in Idaho, where she’s been writing songs that speak of heart and humanity and justice for decades. For the Idaho part of our trip, though, the soundtrack I suggest is an album she put together in tribute to another songwriter whose writings on social justice have become part of the American songbook. Take a listen to Strangers in Another Country.
Mark O’Connor got his start in Washington State, a start that would take him from bluegrass fiddle championships to rock bands, from being in the top ranks of Nashville sidemen to fronting a jazz ensemble to composing and playing classical music. In the process he’s created a classical genre he thinks of as the new American music, drawing on all those elements. Listen to what he’s talking about on Americana Symphony.
Up in Alaska, there are thriving interests in just about every sort of music. Country Grammy nominee Jewel is an Alaskan, and the bluegrass band Bearfoot was first formed there. You can hear their work on Follow Me.
you may also wish to see
Music Road: road trip music: American west
Music Road: Ian Tyson: Yellowhead to Yellowstone
Music Road: Tish Hinojosa: Our Little Planet
This is part of The Great American Road Trip, in which I’m partnering up with A Traveler’s Library to add musical ideas to the book and film suggestions for journeys through the regions of the United States which you’ll find there. Stop by and see what the Library has in mind to inspire travels through the American northwest.
For more about the road trip (and a look at some great road songs) see Great American Road Trip: Music begins