Patty Griffin | Don’t Let Me Die In Florida

I’ve been listening to Patty Griffin’s latest release, “American Kid”, thanks to a streaming premiere at The Wall Street Journal. I’ve been a huge Griffin fan ever since I first heard “Flaming Red” (1998) and especially her masterpiece, “Living With Ghosts” (1996). Her last two records have been thematic, “Downtown Church” (2010) being a mix of Nashville and religion and “American Kid” filled with song about her World War II-veteran father. A lot of the songs on “American Kid” (out May 7th) feel raw and stripped down, contrasting with the ornate orchestration of “Downtown Church”, a record that really wasn’t much in my wheelhouse. But as I listen to this new release, one standout is the second song on the record, “Don’t Let Me Die In Florida”, which comes from a darkly-humorous quote her father said after coming back from burying his brother in Orlando. There’s an old world feel to it, mostly built on Griffin’s unique vocals and hard guitar-strumming: “Please don’t let me die in Florida / I don’t care about my name / If you catch me dying in Daytona / Roll my bed onto a train.” You can watch a performance of the song via Bing Lounge at 101.9 in Portland, Oregon. — David D. Robbins Jr.

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