I shared an epiphany with my husband while watching Brandy Clark perform at City Winery Atlanta last Friday night – she’s the modern day Johnny Cash. If you are a Johnny Cash fan you might be offended at that statement, you might even dismiss me as crazy and stop reading, but you’d be missing out on an amazing talent.
I discovered Brandy Clark by complete accident when she opened up for Jennifer Nettles at The Georgia National Fair in Perry, GA a few years ago. My daughter (who was then in college) and I shared the best awkward mother daughter moment ever as we both laughed at the unexpected lyrics.
Although the lyrics were unexpected, the song instantly became one of my all time favorites. Possibly it is both the lyrics and the delivery that make her so appealing, revealing a raw humanness that I like to think everyone can relate to on some level.
So many of her songs (Stripes, Daughter, Big Day in a Small Town), are both satirical and yet so honest that you somehow feel better about life after listening to them. Brandy Clark is old school country while at the same time being completely current. She is an accomplished song writer with a voice that is beautiful and pure and a performance style that makes you feel like she really gets you — even if you’ve never gotten high, lived in a small town or considered murdering an ex. Just like Johhny Cash could make you imagine what it feels like to stand in a prison yard or get your shoes shined. And that is the genius that is Brandy Clark.
Songs she has written have been made famous by the likes of Miranda Lambert (Ain’t Your Momma’s Broken Heart) and The Band Perry (Better Dig Two). She has had such musical legends as Reba McEntire and Kenny Rogers among many others who have recorded her songs. What I’m getting at here is she is the real deal – true musical talent that world does not often get to see.
When I saw that Brandy Clark was coming to the intimate venue that is City Winery Atlanta, I could not wait to see her and she did not disappoint. As if I needed more of a reason to love her, she sang Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow (Carole King), Good Hearted Woman (Waylon Jennings) and Blame It On Your Heart (Patty Loveless) – all songs that I have loved for my entire life. These songs represent exactly the kind of homage she pays to way back when, while adding her own very current take on life.
I could go on, but I’ll just leave you with the entire song that started it all for me, I really hope you enjoy it as much as I do.