Patty Griffin: Tiny Desk Concert
Patty Griffin has always had a gift for locating a song's nerve endings; for surveying her subject matter and identifying the most efficient possible pathways to listeners' emotions. Her warm, wise voice is comforting, inviting and relatable, even — perhaps especially — as she tackles weighty subjects like middle age and the death of a parent.
The memory of Griffin's father hangs over her recent seventh album, American Kid, but the singer remains far too resourceful to make it a collection of navel-gazing dirges about mortality. In sampling a few of the record's many highlights at the NPR Music offices, she takes care to balance the exquisite mourning of "Faithful Son" — and the sweetly somber "That Kind of Lonely," which Griffin describes as "a song about finally letting go of your delayed adolescence" — by closing her set with the playfully bawdy, kindly celebratory "Get Ready Marie." Inspired by a favorite photo of her grandparents, the song finds Griffin viewing two complicated lives with the generous, hopeful eye she's been casting on her subjects for three fruitful decades now.
- "Faithful Son"
- "That Kind Of Lonely"
- "Get Ready Marie"
- John Deaderick, accordion
- Patty Griffin, guitar
- Dave Pulkingham, guitar
- Craig Ross, baritone guitar
Producer: Bob Boilen; Editor: Denise DeBelius; Audio Engineer: Kevin Wait; Videographers: Kainaz Amaria, Denise DeBelius, Gabriella Garcia-Pardo; photo by Denise DeBelius/NPR