Bramble Roseby Tift Merritt
Tift Merritt may be a newcomer, but she and her music are here to stay. Imagine a less jaded, more optimistic Lucinda Williams who buttresses her introspective country-folk ballads with righteous, Stones-style rock 'n' roll, and you'll have an idea of where Merritt is coming from. Whereas Williams's beautiful Essence found the artist at loggerheads with God and various lovers, on Bramble Rose, Merritt's still fighting the good fight, finding purpose even in moments when clouds darken her world and reasons to believe in herself when others don't. Her songwriting is captivating, both in its eloquence and in an indirectness that opens up the lyrics to manifold interpretations. Whether it's a lush, acoustic ballad keyed by mandolins and moaning pedal steel lines, as on the title song, or a scalding put-down of a feckless lover fueled by razor-edged guitar solos and a powerhouse rhythm section, as in "Neighborhood," Merritt casts herself as a romantic with an edge -- the edge being that she can lament the things gone wrong without losing faith in a bountiful future. As a singer and a writer, she's already at the top of her game on the steady-rolling "Virginia, No One Can Warn You," the neo-honky-tonk workout "Diamond Shoes," and the country blues ballad "Are You Still in Love with Me," which ably balances wariness and hopefulness. Tift Merritt figures to be flying through the radar for a long time.
- Release Date:
- Lost Highway
Performance CreditsTift Merritt Primary Artist,Piano,Rhythm Guitar,Vocals
Julianna Raye Harmony
Benmont Tench Piano,Celeste,Harmonium,Hammond Organ
Ethan Johns Guitar,Mandolin,Percussion,Piano,Drums,Hammond Organ,Ukulele,chamberlain,Omnichord
C.C. White Harmony
Greg Readling Dobro
Zeke Hutchins Drums
Jay Brown Bass,Harmony
Technical CreditsEthan Johns Producer,Engineer
Stephen Rhodes Engineer
Karen Naff Art Direction
Stephen Rhodes Engineer
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Tift Merritt is amazing on so many levels. She has a voice that is definitely up there with Emilou, Lucinda, and the other greats. On top of that, she can compose and write some brilliant songs. Plus, she is only in her 20's and is on her way to a long career.
I picked-up a demo copy at a second-hand CD store. What luck! How else would I ever have heard Tift? Certainly not on the radio where I'm from. I may be old-fashioned, but I like catchy tunes I can tap my foot to with understandable lyrics I can sing along with. The lyrics, musicianship, and singing make this a strong first release.
Ms.Tift Merritt is beautiful and brainy. Ms.Tift Merritt is remarkable singer-songwriter and gifted guitarist. Ms.Tift Merritt’s first album is so strong that even the experienced ears could easily believe that she has been in the music business professionally for at least five years. Supported by a superb backing band (Thanks especially to Mr.Ethan Johns & Mr.Benmont Tench), Ms.Merritt sings her impressive songs with impressive vocals. The more you listen to “Bramble Rose”, the more you believe that there will always be some talented country artists daring to hit the less traveled highways with the cars of Ms.Emmylou Harris & Ms.Lucinda Williams. “Bramble Rose” is a classy country-rock plus folk-rock with a sprinkle of gospel. There is not one weak song out of the 11 tracks and is just an excellent CD overall. Future is looking real good for Ms.Merritt. May she have a long and successful career.