There is no evidence that Alison Krauss is being awarded a Grammy for turning 48 years old today (July 23), but she’s won them for damn near everything else. Her ethereal voice and silken fiddling have endowed her with such musical adaptability that she soars beyond any particular format.
Krauss has earned more Grammys — 27 — than any other woman, with triumphs in the bluegrass, country, pop, roots and folk categories. Only classical conductor George Solti and producer Quincy Jones have won more.
Even more astounding is the range of artists Krauss has recorded or performed with. Apart from years of distinguished work with her band, Union Station, she has paired with Yo Yo Ma, Sting, Robert Plant, John Waite, James Taylor, Cyndi Lauper, Shania Twain, Dolly Parton, Kenny Rogers, Shawn Colvin, Brad Paisley, Alan Jackson, Ralph Stanley, Vince Gill, Willie Nelson, Alabama, Shenandoah, the Cox Family, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Don Williams, Emmylou Harris, Gillian Welch, Jamey Johnson, Michael Johnson , Sarah Jarosz and Sierra Hull — just to name a few.
We even found a clip of Krauss teaming up on the old hoedown “Raise a Ruckus Tonight” with proto-rocker Tom Jones.
A native of Champaign, Illinois, Krauss was a musical prodigy. She signed with the independent label Rounder Records when she was 14 and released her first album for that label at 16. By the late 1980s and early ‘90s, she had won such acclaim that major labels vied to sign her. But she remained with Rounder and firmly the pilot of her own career.
She won her first Grammy in 1991 for best bluegrass recording and her most recent one in 2012 in that same category. Krauss was a pivotal figure in the massively successful soundtrack album for the film O Brother, Where Art Thou? and was a headliner on the fabled Down From the Mountain Tour the album inspired.
In 2017 and recording as a solo vocalist, Krauss released to great acclaim the album Windy City, a collection of songs first made famous by bluegrass and country artists. It debuted at No. 1 on both the country and Americana charts.
This spring and summer, Krauss has been touring with Willie Nelson and she’s still turning heads with her musical wizardry. For example, here’s a breathtaking performance of Krauss performing “Amazing Grace” on the 2019 National Memorial Day Concert.