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Lori McKenna

By the time her songwriting career took off in 2005, Boston native Lori McKenna had already released four strong independent albums of her own. McKenna was raised in a musical family and wrote her first songs as a teenager, though it wasn't until her late twenties that she began performing on Boston's folk circuit. After releasing her debut, Paper Wings and Halo, in 2000, she signed with indie Signature Sounds and released three more albums over the next four years, including 2004's acclaimed Bittertown. While her reputation as a quality songsmith had already netted her a publishing deal with Nashville's Harlan Howard Music, her fortunes changed dramatically when country star Faith Hill covered three of McKenna's songs on her 2005 album Fireflies. Hill's album topped both the country and pop charts and the increased exposure soon earned McKenna a record deal with Warner Bros., which reissued Bittertown later that year.

While the Warner deal would only yield one new album in 2007's Unglamorous, Universal Music signed McKenna to a publishing deal the following year and by the decade's end, other major artists like Tim McGraw, Mandy Moore, and Vance Gilbert had recorded her songs. In addition to her successes as a songwriter, McKenna continued to record her own albums, earning acclaim for releases like Lorraine (2011), Massachusetts (2013), and Numbered Doors (2014). As a songwriter, she remained in high demand, writing for Keith Urban, Hunter Hayes, Alison Krauss, and Little Big Town, among many others. Several of her songs proved to be major hits with Hayes' "I Want Crazy" topping Billboard's pop chart and Little Big Town's country smash "Girl Crush" earning McKenna her first Grammy and CMA awards. Throughout her career, she has continued to call Boston home, commuting to and from Nashville to write and collaborate, while choosing to live outside of Music City's bubble. After signing a new deal with Creative Nation in 2015, she hooked up with Nashville maverick Dave Cobb, whose organic production style has been parlayed into critically lauded albums by artists like Sturgill Simpson and Jason Isbell. The result was 2016's more intimate The Bird & the Rifle, which featured her own version of "Humble and Kind," a country hit she'd provided to Tim McGraw earlier in the year. McGraw's version also helped her earn a second consecutive CMA award for Song of the Year. ~ Timothy Monger
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Massachusetts

1. Salt

2. My Love Follows You Where You Go

3. Susanna

4. Smaller And Smaller

5. Make Every Word Hurt

6. Shake

7. How Romantic Is That

8. Shouting

9. Better With Time

10. Take Me With You When You Go

11. Love Can Put It Back Together

12. Grown Up Now

x

Track List: Lorraine

1. The Luxury Of Knowing

2. The Most

3. If He Tried

4. Lorraine

5. You Get A Love Song

6. Rocket Science

7. Buy This Town

8. All I Ever Do

9. That's How You Know

10. Sweet Disposition

11. American Revolver

12. Ladders & Parachutes

13. Still Down Here

x

Track List: Unglamorous

1. I Know You

2. Unglamorous

3. Your Next Lover

4. I'm Not Crazy

5. Falter

6. Witness To Your Life

7. Drinkin' Problem

8. How To Survive

9. Written Permission

10. Confetti

11. Leaving This Life

x

Track List: Bittertown

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 Bus

13. One Kiss Goodnight

x

Track List: Paper Wings And Halo

1. As I Am

2. What's One More Time

3. Paper Wings And Halo

4. Ruby's Shoes

5. Would You Love Me Then

6. Hardly Speaking A Word

7. It's Easy When You Smile

8. Paying The Price

9. Swallows Me Whole

10. Don't Tell Her

11. Holy Water

12. Never Be Back

x

Track List: Numbered Doors

1. The Time I've Wasted

2. Numbered Doors

3. Stranger In His Kiss

4. God Never Made One Of Us To Be Alone

5. All A Woman Wants

6. Rose Of Jericho

7. Love To Be Cruel For (Feat. Mark Erelli)

8. Good Marriage

9. Three Kids No Husband

10. Starlight

x

Track List: The Bird & The Rifle

1. Wreck You

2. The Bird & The Rifle

3. Giving Up On Your Hometown

4. Halfway Home

5. Humble & Kind

6. We Were Cool

7. Old Men Young Women

8. All These Things

9. Always Want You

10. If Whiskey Were A Woman

x

Track List: Wreck You (Single)

1. Wreck You

Comments

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marty_fishin g m a n 2 0 0 3
(The Song : Two Solders Coming Home ) was the very 1st song I heard & I Cried my eyes out I had no tears left to drop and this is No Joke It hit me so hard I was blown away by the words and voice WELL DONE LORI !!!!
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marty_fishin g m a n 2 0 0 3
Love her voice I listen to her ALOT !!!!! Can NOT Get enough I think I have heard about every song she ever recorded . at least here on Pandora and You Tube
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Eastern lights if another kind.
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1997 I saw you come, I do believe that.
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Yes I do love making love to real music people evt
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stephendange r 7 0
I want to say thanks to all the brave Vets and active military God bless you all and I will be praying for you
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stephendange r 7 0
Thank you to all our vets
Please Check out Oscar Mike.org
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My step dad is in the Army and is coming home soon from over there where they can't get the seen of killing people who are bad want to come home
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Here's a big THANK YOU TO ALL OUR VETS AND ACTIVE MILITARY cause freedom ain't free
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God Bless all the soldiers present & past who have sacrificed so much for the liberty of our country. Even if you don't agree with the politics or the reason for the wars themselves, don't judge our soldiers. Please take a moment and say,"Thank You !!"
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lee' .... A man in the Army or Navy, an American life all the same!!!
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Well my dad was in the army as a cook and I am so thankful he is home. And I feel bad for those how lost their lives.
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mjanicee
@leeclemaste r s . . . . . . . r e a l l y ? My son was an ARMY RANGER....sh a m e on you...anyone over there fighting is all the same....Unit e d We Stand....sha m e on you.
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♡<..3
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I Have Not Seen the movie Act of Valor
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dustinandrus 2 0 1 3
Bring your brothers and sisters it home safely.
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This goes to my friends Nick and Jordan(:
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Oooorah
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Cool
Lol
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Sad song if you actually listen to the lyrics really hits home
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How could this lady compared to that transvestite GaGa freak?
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Wow...why isn't she as well known as Lady Gaga?
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james.cbrlc
I love her song two soldiers coming home.
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LORI M IS A GODDESS, there are none higher
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LOVE Two Solders Coming home!! :)
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rjp345rjp
Regarding this comment: ARTHUR E. WASHER HI THIS SINGER WAS FAMOUS WAY BACK IN 1979 EASY LISTENING I STILL LIKE HER SONGS

I call bull - She was born in 1968 so are you trying to say she was famous at age 11???

Talented and beautiful and a Mom to 5 kids - but not famous at 11 years old. She became a songwriter in 1995 and released her first album in 2000. Check your facts Arthur...
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lam101957
I love her......she ' s been singing about my life....
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Sim to Allanis Morissette.. . l i k e this alot!!
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LOVE her...can't believe I've never heard of her before Pandora! I really hope she's famous by now...
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My wife and I saw her in Atlanta when she opened up for David Wilcox...Dav i d came out and watched her entire set, sitting in the audience. I've never seen a headline act sneak into the crowd to watch his own opening act...says something about both of them, I suspect. She was incredible, and we've been huge fans ever since. Go see her live if you get the chance.
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a refreshing artist. very nice
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Wow... nice new find... like her style
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really, really good.
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Been following her for years now and LOVE every song. I feel like she sings ABOUT ME!
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i used to see laurie when my husband and i started dating at club passim in cambridge.. we now have been married for 7 years and i still love her! Her song writting is brilliant and nice to know someone out there can put a pen to my soul...
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Beauty
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HI THIS SINGER WAS FAMOUS WAY BACK IN 1979 EASY LISTENING I STILL LIKE HER SONGS
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Wow! What a joy to listen to...keep it up!
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meaghan42
I first heard Lori on Chronicle (a half hour show in Boston with local features). She was singing and playing the guitar in her house while her little one bounced up and down in a doorway jumper. I thought she was so down-to-eart h and amazing, considering her incredible talent.
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Sounds like she's singing while lying on a really strong vibrating massage chair.
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first heard her on Americana, her "Bible song" is the best on that great album. I would've bet that high lonesome sound was right out of the hills of Tenessee. She is unique.
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like her more with every listening. just gut-wrenchin g .
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oliver.closo v
I have yet to find a song that Lori McKenna sings that I don't love. she sounds like a cross between Stevie Nicks and the Dixie Chicks, but with out the bad elements of those respective voices. Her sound is edgy and clean, and carries a world of emotional undertones. She is a priceless gem.
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stargirl202
It's too bad that Faith Hill got credit for Fireflies because McKenna's version is so much better! You can tell that she writes her own songs based on the way she interprets each one with her voice. I love her!
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LOVE her
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Sweatheart I THINK you are a Texas girl incognito sing your heart out
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ncoakley
Powerfull and crisp voice, she's great.
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She's so great!
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Unglamorous and Witness To Your Life are two suberb singles..Lor i is amazing.
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bjkguard-mon e y
her voice reminds me of Kasey Chambers
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