Soundtrack Of My Life: Margo Price

Nashville's queen of country

The first song I remember hearing

The Statler Brothers – ‘Flowers on the Wall’

“The chorus [goes]: “Smoking cigarettes and watching Captain Kangaroo/Now don’t tell me I’ve nothin’ to do”. It sounded [to me] like a children’s song even though it definitely wasn’t, and I remember asking my Mom about it and singing along and she’s like: “You shouldn’t sing that song it’s not for kids!”

The first song I fell in love with

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The Ronettes – ‘Be My Baby’

“I watched Dirty Dancing when I was quite young, and my mum fast-forwarded through all the sex scenes and the dark moments. This song was on there and I loved it so much. I remember dancing and singing into a hairbrush. I got into a bunch of those old girl group and doo-wop songs. I think I’ve had a massive crush on Ronnie Spector ever since, she’s the original bad girl of rock and roll.”

The first album I bought

Jewel – ‘Pieces of You’

“That’s the one I remember going out with my own money and purchasing. I heard her on the radio and I thought it was so cool. It was different to everything I was hearing at the time. I remember the artwork and reading all the lyrics, and being so inspired that she lived in her car and worked her way up from nothing to being able to make an album.”

A song that reminds me of home

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Creedence Clearwater Revival – ‘Green River’

“I grew up listening to a lot of Creedence Clearwater Revival. My dad really loved CCR and John Fogerty, and every time I put on one of their songs, especially their greatest hits, it just takes me back to my home.”

The song I wish I’d written

Bob Dylan – ‘Like A Rolling Stone’

“I think when I really clicked with [this song] is when I’d just moved to Nashville, and I had been given a burned CD from an ex-boyfriend, which was The Essential Bob Dylan. I remember putting it on in my car and driving around, and that was the moment when it hit me hard. I was on my own and I was searching for this elusive career and trying to find the muse of writing and I was really broke. I didn’t know anybody in town, and I listened to that song on repeat, trying to crack the code or find the equation of how one makes something lyrically, mathematically work, to get all those feelings. It’s the perfect song.”

The song I do at karaoke

Prince – ‘Kiss’

“I love a good karaoke bar. I used to live right next to my favourite one in Nashville. It’s a place called Fran’s in a very tiny house, almost like a trailer. It’s really smoky and it has cheap beer, pool tables and the bartenders are all toothless. There’s a giant velvet cat in there. Brittany Howard and I went and did karaoke in there one night, and let me tell you, she brought the house down.”

The song I can’t get out of my head

Swamp Dogg – ‘Family Pain’

“Swamp Dogg put out this record ‘Sorry You Couldn’t Make It’ this year, which is pretty much the best title ever, and there’s a song on there that’s got a cool hip-hop beat. It’s about the drug epidemic in America, but it’s got this fiddle over the top of it. Every time I put that track on my daughter, who’s only one year old, just starts dancing.”

The song I can no longer listen to

Grateful Dead – ‘Touch Of Grey’

“I used to have this boyfriend who played it quite often, and just the thought of it makes me nauseated. I love it so much, and I’m like, ‘Maybe a couple more decades will go by and I’ll be able to return to it’, but I can only think of him when I think of it now.”

The album I’ve gone back to during lockdown

 Carole King – ‘Tapestry’

“I put on Carole King’s ‘Tapestry’ more than I should. I annoy my husband with how much I listen to it. My Dad turned me onto Carole King in my early twenties, and I kind of forgot about this album for a while. Right when quarantine hit, I was like, ‘I need a record that’s both meaningful and still has some happiness in it.’ ‘Tapestry’, for me, is definitely a desert island pick.”

The song I want played at my funeral

Leonard Cohen – ‘The Partisan’

“It’s going to have to be something by Leonard Cohen, maybe ‘The Partisan’. The typical answer could be ‘Hallelujah’ but I feel like other people might have that as well. I think almost anything off ‘Songs of Leonard Cohen’. That record has such a spiritual quality for me – the beautiful, angelic harmonies mixed with the sadness in his voice. I do know the most difficult song decisions I had to make were at my son’s wake, and a friend of mine sang ‘Tears of Rage’ [by The Band]. Then he also sang ‘Strangers’ by The Kinks. Those are two really great funeral songs, if there is such a thing.”

Margo Price’s new album ‘That’s How Rumors Get Started’ and the synthphonic arrangement of track ‘I’d Die For You’ are out now

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