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Patty Griffin

Biography of Patty Griffin

Patty Griffin

Patty Griffin is one of the most promising singer-songwriters to come out of the Boston/Cambridge folk music scene in the past few years. Although her two albums have been sparsely produced, Griffin's poetic lyricism, bluesy alto vocals and melodic guitar picking have aimed directly at the deepest emotions of her listeners.

The youngest of seven children, Griffin grew up listening to her mother sing while doing housework and her grandmother's family singing on the front porch at night. In addition to listening intently to The Beatles, Griffin was fascinated by the music of Bruce Springsteen and Rickie Lee Jones. Although she acquired a fifty dollar guitar and began writing songs at the age of sixteen, Griffin gave little thought to a career as a musician.

After living in Florida for nearly two years, Griffin moved to Boston and was married. While her husband encouraged her to perform, Griffin spent most of her time as a waitress. When her husband announced that he "didn't want to be married anymore" in 1992, Griffin found herself on her own and began to perform in Boston area coffeehouses. She quickly attracted attention to her well-crafted songs and gutsy vocals. After Griffin's over-produced demo tape reached the ears of a talent scout, she was encouraged to re-record it with just her guitar and voice. Within six months, the re-done demo resulted in Griffin being offered a recording contract with A&M. The tape was later released as Griffin's debut album, Living With Ghosts, and inspired comparisons with recordings by Tori Amos and Alanis Morisette. Griffin's second album, Flaming Red, was released in 1998. Four years later, Griffin appeared with a modest acoustic effort entitled 1,000 Kisses. While touring in support of the album in 2002, Griffin documented behind the scenes footage for a future DVD collection. A Kiss In Time, which appeared in Octoiber 2003, included coverage of the tour, interviews, and two full-length videos. A separate disc capturing Griffin's live stint at Nashville's Ryman Auditorium coincided the package. Artists such as Lisa Germano, Emmylou Harris, and Buddy & Julie Miller joined Griffin for the recording of her fourth album, Impossible Dream, which appeared in April 2004.

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