Lillie Mae has always been a little ahead of her time, but it seems her time has finally come.
The folk-rock singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist is stepping out of her role as a side woman and stepping center stage, thanks to the support of rock icon and Third Man Records founder and head Jack White.
Her journey began in her family band Jypsi, where she honed her chops on the bluegrass circuit before eventually she and her siblings’ avant-garde, hippie and often punk style began to alienate them from the musical community that shaped them, she revealed in a recent interview with NPR.
But that’s OK, because she landed right where she was supposed to be: in the presence of White, who saw a solo artist with raw talent and wanted to see that artistry grow. The first step was her role as a musician in White’s band.
Lilllie Mae’s debut album, Forever and Then Some, is a perfectly executed blend of country, bluegrass, folk-rock with sonic and vocal nods to everyone from Dolly Parton and Lucinda Williams to old-timey mountain music to moments even reminiscent of Natalie Maines and early Dixie Chicks — done in an original way, of course.
And those sibling harmonies truly give it wings. You can’t fake that kind of chemistry.
See Lillie Mae on the road this summer and early fall as she embarks on a steady streams of dates from Kentucky to Montana to California and everywhere in between before heading back to Nashville to play AmericanaFest kicking off Sept. 12.
Forever and Then Some is available now.