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Tracy Nelson

A very versatile and talented vocalist, Tracy Nelson is better known for her role as lead singer of Mother Earth. The Nashville sextet had three albums in a country-rock vein make the charts in the late '60s and early '70s. But Nelson is just as capable in soul, R&B, and blues, though she hasn't released many records in that style. Her albums for Flying Fish were more indicative of her eclecticism, but her R&B and blues roots are really evident on her 1993 release In the Here and Now and 1995's I Feel So Good -- both on Rounder Records.

Born in California but raised in Madison, WI, Nelson began playing music when she was a student at the University of Wisconsin. Nelson began singing folk and blues at coffeehouses and R&B and rock & roll at parties with a covers band called the Fabulous Imitators. In 1964, she recorded an album for Prestige, Deep Are the Roots, which was produced by Sam Charters. Two years after recording Deep Are the Roots, Nelson headed out to the West Coast, spending some time in Los Angeles before settling in San Francisco. After arriving in San Francisco, she formed Mother Earth in 1968, moving the group to Nashville the following year. The band stayed together for five years, recording several albums for Mercury Records, among a handful of other labels. Nelson left the band in the mid-'70s, embarking on a solo career that saw her release albums for a variety of labels, including Columbia, Atlantic, and Flying Fish.

Nelson continued to record and perform into the '90s. In 1993, she released In the Here and Now, her first album for Rounder Records and, not coincidentally, her first straight blues record since she began recording in the '60s. Nelson followed In the Here and Now with several acclaimed records of gritty blues-rock for Rounder, switching to Memphis International for the release of You'll Never Be a Stranger at My Door in 2007. ~ Ron Wynn & Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi
full bio

Comments

jnb66
One of my all-time favorite artists. I actually met her once, I think it was late 1968.
ghank
She did some great recordings with Marcia Ball and and Etta James. Down so Low still gives me chills. Sat at her feet at Blind Willie's in Atlanta over a decade ago: what a night!
Bought first album on the strength of Living with the Animals, and its male vocal. Imagine my surprise and delight to play the album and discover Tracy. First saw her with Mother Earth more than 40 years ago at the Fillmore East and still think she is the best.
Where is Live from Cell Block D ?
riverwolf1
Tracy got me through the late 60's and still gets me up and singing here in 2012. I got to see her in my little town Fayetteville Arkansas back in the early 80's. I am a huge fan and tell everyone about her.
Saw her with Mother Earth in the early 70s and solo in the mid-80s. A national treasure, and as, many have already pointed out, perhaps the most underappreci a t e d female singer in America.
karenkantor
Met her at the Cascade Blues Festival, where she signed ALL of my albums and CDs. So brilliant; so down to earth. When she sang harmony she stepped back about 5 feet from her mic so as not to overpower the other singers. Gotta love that!
city side....coun t r y side...."I the fly"..."You Win Again"...I have the 33.....
arepeee
ditto to everything you all said. I went to college in Madison late 60s but never saw her live
Back in the 80's I was a live monitor guy at myriad of venues, Tracy Nelson was by far one of my favorites her honest interpretati o n s of classics like Holly Palmer's “down so low” (as noted by R. Bruce Baum) and just her raw vocal prowess will bring the crowd to their feet time and time again.
parrtex
Tracy Nelson Armadillo World Headquarters nuff said. dp.
info62013
how come only 2 albums...she has maybe 35 albums
humorconnect i o n
I had the luck to see Tracy Nelson at a bar in Boston about 35 years ago. Her genius is clearly evident in her writing of "Down So Low." I'm a fan forever.
iamadogsowha t
Love the power in her voice-she gets it and sells it!
Always liked her better than Janis. ..Mother Earth was the seminal album for her I believe. ..Still love Janis, just like Tracys voice a little better.
lamaryates
Been listening to Tracy Nelson off and on for 40 years and never been disappointed .
Tracy Nelson can really belt it out! One of the most underated female vocalists in the entire history of Music.
If her fame were proportionat e to her talent, she would be world famous forever.
moonhand
She is f***in' satisfying! I want her to be RECOGNIZED; she deserves more playtime than she gets.
info62013
there are probably another 20 albums of Tracy Nelson not represented here. Why is that??? L.way
i would love to have a station with only tracy nelson on it she my very favorite singer.

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