Carlene Carter, Shawn Colvin, Amythyst Kiah, and Maria Muldaur share a conversation with NPR’s Ann Powers, highlighting women who inspire them as musicians and taking turns performing on stage at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.
Held on September 12, 2019 (during that year’s AmericanaFest and in partnership with NPR Music), the program nods to season three of the NPR series “Turning the Tables,” which explores female performers considered crucial to the development of American music.
Maria Muldaur begins by describing her discovery of blues artists such as Bessie Smith, Victoria Spivey, and Memphis Minnie, and sings a “dirty blues” song titled “My Handy Man” to a pre-recorded track.
Carlene Carter shares memories of her grandmother, Country Music Hall of Fame member Mother Maybelle Carter, and points toward her ingenuity in creating a picking style that simultaneously feels like rhythm guitar and lead guitar. Carter sings “Foggy Mountain Top” (recorded and released by the Carter Family in 1929 and again by the Carter Sisters & Mother Maybelle in 1952) on an autoharp from her family’s collection.
Shawn Colvin reflects on the recording of her 1992 album “Fat City” with producer Larry Klein, who was married to Joni Mitchell at the time. In addition to reminiscing about her interactions with Mitchell, Colvin talks about how she had to give herself some distance from Mitchell’s music at one point to find her own voice, then performs Mitchell’s “For the Roses.”
Amythyst Kiah provides her background as a student at East Tennessee State University as a student of old-time and country music. After a discussion of lesser-known blues musician Precious Bryant, Kiah performs “Broke and Ain’t Got a Dime” on acoustic guitar.
Continuing the round in reverse, Kiah performs her song “Firewater,” which is followed by Colvin’s “Polaroids,” Carter’s “The Bitter End,” and Muldaur’s rendition of Blu Lu Barker’s “Don’t You Feel My Leg.”
Explore the Museum’s public programming: https://countrymusichalloffame.org/plan-your-visit/exhibits-activities/public-programs/
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