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Patty Griffin, Shawn Colvin In The 'Musician's Spotlight'

Patty Griffin, Shawn Colvin
Patty Griffin, Shawn Colvin

This week's Musician’s Spotlight features two Austin, TX, Grammy-winning singer-songwriters who choose not to stay at arena's length from their fans: from 2016, Patty Griffin, and from 2013, Shawn Colvin.

A New York Times reviewer wrote that Patty Griffin's stripped-down lyrics form " ... cameo-carved songs that create complete emotional portraits of specific people … (her) songs have independent lives that continue in your head when the music ends.” A crowd of high-profile recording artists agrees: Linda Ronstadt, Emmylou Harris, Solomon Burke, The Dixie Chicks, Kelly Clarkson & Jeff Beck, Martina McBride, Miranda Lambert, Melissa Etheridge and Susan Boyle have all recorded her songs - not to mention Griffin herself, on nine studio and two live albums.

Shawn Colvin was singing country songs with Buddy Miller and her own songs for Fast Folk Magazine when she met producer John Leventhal and proceeded to release Steady On, the breakthrough 1989 solo recording that won a Grammy for Best Contemporary Folk Album. Colvin has been collaborating, writing, performing and recording ever since. Bonnie Raitt says: “She’s simply one of the best singers I’ve ever heard — and a truly gifted and deep songwriter and guitarist… She was groundbreaking when she emerged and continues to inspire me and the legions of fans and other singer/songwriters coming up in her wake.”

(Broadcast: Musician's Spotlight,  11/26/19. Listen on the radio Tuesdays, 7 p.m., or via podcast.)

John Floridis, the host and producer of Musician's Spotlight, has been with Montana Public Radio since 1997. He has interviewed over 200 musicians during that time. He is also an independent recording and performing artist in his own right and a former registered music therapist.
Beth Anne Austein has been spinning tunes on the air (The Folk Show, Dancing With Tradition, Freeforms), as well as recording, editing and mixing audio for Montana Public Radio and Montana PBS, since the Clinton Administration. She’s jockeyed faders or "fixed it in post” for The Plant Detective; Listeners Bookstall; Fieldnotes; Musicians Spotlight; The Write Question; Storycorps; Selected Shorts; Bill Raoul’s music series; orchestral and chamber concerts; lecture series; news interviews; and outside producers’ programs about topics ranging from philosophy to ticks.
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