Carrie Rodriguez stepped into the national spotlight with her unique collaboration with veteran songwriter Chip Taylor, which yielded three critically acclaimed albums of duets. But Rodriguez’s solo work has proven she is a master of intimate, honest songs that put an urbane, seductive spin on country and bluegrass.
Rodriguez grew up in Austin and spent time performing with her dad, singer-songwriter David Rodriguez. She took to classical music at a very age and seemed to be on the fast track to a classical career. She had second thoughts about her future, however, after Lyle Lovett, a family friend, invited Rodriguez to sit in with his Large Band. She soon began focusing on contemporary music.
During SXSW in 2001, Chip Taylor heard Rodriguez performing and asked her to join his touring band. This quickly resulted in onstage duets. “It was so foreign, using my voice after so many years of playing the violin,” she said. “It had been easy for me to hide behind my instrument.” The duo released several CDs together and then Taylor co-wrote and co-produced her solo debut, 2006’s Seven Angels on a Bicycle.
PureMusic wrote “Seven Angels on a Bicycle finds Rodriguez plumbing the depths of traditional country as well as experimenting stylistically. The end result is a tenacious collection of love-themed songs tied together by Rodriguez’s brassy contralto.” MOJO said “There’s a real earthiness in both Carrie’s singing and fiddle. She’s hot and steamy one minute and pure Nashville the next.”
Rodriguez’s follow-up release, She Ain’t Me, also received early critical acclaim. The CD came out in 2008.