Lucinda Williams: Happy Woman Blues

Lucinda Williams

To be honest, I can’t say when I discovered Lucinda Williams. I know it was within the last decade, which is considered late to the game since this amazingly talented singer/songwriter has been crafting her passionate and rebellious blend of country, blues, and rock & roll since her 1979 debut ‘Ramblin.’

This nomadic powerhouse has been called “The Female Bob Dylan,” and rightly so. Williams is a songwriter’s songwriter. She is blunt in her songs, deftly weaving a story in her lyrics which keep the listener hanging on to her every word. She is a poet with a no frills delivery. You have to love Williams for her take no bullshit demeanor and her “no quit” attitude. She knows what she wants and that’s that. It may have taken her longer than it should have to achieve national, even worldwide recognition, but she did it on her own terms and you have to love her for it. In addition, her drive has produced some of the best records of the last 20 years.

Since her debut, Williams has released over 10 studio albums, including the monumental double live album ‘Live at the Fillmore’ (2005). Sadly, I’ve missed Williams’ last two releases, ‘Blessed’ (2011) and ‘Down Where the Spirit Meets the Bone’ (2014), but have all her albums prior to those. I’d have to say my favorite Williams album is ‘Car Wheels on a Gravel Road’ (1998), or maybe it’s ‘Essence’ (2001)…wait, what about ‘World Without Tears’ (2003), or ‘Little Honey’ (2008)…yeah, you get the idea. Williams has racked up some beautiful albums containing just as many beautiful songs. Here are 10 of my favorites.

“Are You Alright?” from ‘West’ (2007)

“Atonement” from ‘World Without Tears’ (2003)

“Changed the Locks” from ‘Lucinda Williams’ (1988)

“Essence” from ‘Essence’ (2001)

“Honey Bee” from ‘Little Honey’ (2008)

“I Lost It” from ‘Car Wheels on a Gravel Road’ (1998)

“Joy” from ‘Car Wheels on a Gravel Road’ (1998)

“Pineola” from ‘Sweet Old World’ (1992)

“Right in Time” from ‘Car Wheels on a Gravel Road’ (1998)

“Righteously” from ‘World Without Tears’ (2003)