by Lori McKenna
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The 13 original songs of Bittertown, Lori McKenna’s fourth -- and most extraordinary -- release, are richly evocative, melodic portraits of the wealth, and costs, of simply living a regular life. As in previous albums (Pieces of Me, Paper Wings and Halo) she sews together an all-American quilt of country, rock, and folk. Bittertown, though, outperforms them in depth and breadth, buoyed by Kevin Barry’s lusciously layered guitars and shimmering strokes from producer/vintage instrumentalist Lorne Entress. Winner of ASCAP's Sammy Cahn lyricist award, McKenna fearlessly explores the swept-under-the-rug minutiae of everyday existence. Her lyrics will resonate endlessly with all those caught somewhere between big-city ambitions and deep domestic desires. To wit, in “Silver Bus,” McKenna, the mother of five and the so-called Boss of Housewives, ambivalently sings: “I’m able to fetch the next great silver bus out of town, but…I have no desire to leave.” On a silver bus or otherwise, Lori McKenna has truly arrived.

Product Details

Release Date: 05/11/2004
Label: Signature Sounds
UPC: 0701237128528
catalogNumber: 1285


  1. Bible Song
  2. Mr. Sunshine
  3. One Man
  4. Pour
  5. Lone Star
  6. Stealing Kisses
  7. If You Ask
  8. Monday Afternoon
  9. The Ledge
  10. My Sweetheart
  11. Cowardly Lion
  12. Silver Buss
  13. One Kiss Goodnight

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Lori McKenna   Primary Artist,Acoustic Guitar,Vocals,Guitar (Resonator)
Duke Levine   Electric Guitar
Kevin Barry   Bass,Guitar,Mandolin,Piano,Electric Guitar,Slide Guitar,Lap Steel Guitar,Guitar (12 String Electric),Mando-Guitar,Guitar (Resonator)
Lorne Entress   Acoustic Guitar,Percussion,Celeste,Drums,Bass Drums,Keyboards,Vocals,Synthesizer Bass,Wurlitzer,Hi String,Reed Organ,Orchestra Bells
Buddy Miller   Vocals
Chris Haynes   Piano
Chris Trapper   Vocals
Brian J. McKenna   Electric Guitar
Mark Erelli   Vocals,Slide Guitar
Dave Limina   Hammond Organ
Megan Toohey   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Joe "Sonny" Barbato   Wurlitzer

Technical Credits

Duke Levine   Engineer
Lorne Entress   Producer,Engineer
Andy Bell   Composer
Chris Rival   Engineer
Huck Bennert   Engineer
Mark Thayer   Engineer
Lori McKenna   Composer
Shane Koss   Programming
Meghan Dewar   Art Direction
Gabriel Unger   Art Direction

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Bittertown 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Most people I know have never heard of Lori McKenna. Typically they say "oh yeah, celtic music...I have heard her". No, that is Loreena McKennitt...not Lori McKenna. This cd does not fit squarely into any genre. There is country, pop, alternative, folk all in one album. Lori's lyrics are her greatest asset along with a voice that can't be ignored. Lori sings about the struggles of life and love with painful optimism. Most of the songs were inspired by Lori's own smalltown of Stoughton, MA where she has lived her entire life. If you enjoy honest lyrics, acoustic guitar with a bit of twang, and a voice that will rip at your emotions then you will like Lori. I would also highly recommend her other cds, especially 'The Kitchen Tapes'