Todd Paris/Mountain Stage
Tift Merritt.
Todd Paris/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Tift Merritt On Mountain Stage

Tift Merritt On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/162580604/162392754" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Singer-songwriter Tift Merritt makes her fourth appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live on the campus of the University of Alaska at Fairbanks. Unlike many country-influenced songwriters, Merritt made a conscious decision to eschew Nashville for New York City — which might come as surprise upon hearing the honeyed twang in her speaking voice.

Merritt burst onto the roots-music scene in 2002 with her solo debut Bramble Rose, and its follow-up, Tambourine, which was nominated for a Grammy for Best Country Album. Feeling road-weary and uninspired, she then jetted off to France, where she developed material for her third album, Another Country.

Merritt remains close to her North Carolina roots, but the years spent on the road have given her a lucid outsider's perspective, on full display in the title song of her newest album, Traveling Alone. Armed with only an acoustic guitar, she opens her set with this track before being joined by the Mountain Stage band.


Web Extra: Tift Merritt behind the scenes at Mountain Stage

Set List
  • "Traveling Alone"
  • "Sweet Spot"
  • "To Myself"
  • "Still Not Home"
  • "Small Talk Relations"

This Mountain Stage episode was first published on Oct. 9, 2012.

[+] read more[-] less

More From Mountain Stage

I Draw Slow performs on this week's Mountain Stage. Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

I Draw Slow On Mountain Stage

The Dublin roots band finds new, folky grooves in old-time Appalachian song.

I Draw Slow On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/516610454/516611424" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Brooke Waggoner performs on this week's episode of Mountain Stage. Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Brooke Waggoner On Mountain Stage

The Nashville singer-songwriter returns to Mountain Stage with music from her latest album, Sweven.

Brooke Waggoner On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/515456759/515555873" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Guster performs on Mountain Stage. Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Guster On Mountain Stage

The seminal pop-rock quartet returns to Mountain Stage, recorded live in Charleston, W.Va.

Guster On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/514075166/514076224" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Ruby Amanfu performs on this week's episode of Mountain Stage. Josh Saul/ Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Josh Saul/ Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Ruby Amanfu On Mountain Stage

Hear the soulful Nashville singer perform a live set in West Virginia.

Ruby Amanfu On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/512620585/512711035" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Noah Gundersen performs on this week's Mountain Stage. Josh Saul/Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Josh Saul/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Noah Gundersen On Mountain Stage

Hear the Seattle singer-songwriter perform music from Carry The Ghost live in Charleston, W.Va.

Noah Gunderson On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/511384852/511399220" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Jonathan Edwards performs on this week's Mountain Stage. Josh Saul /Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Josh Saul /Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Jonathan Edwards On Mountain Stage

The veteran songwriter plays music from his latest album, Tomorrow's Child, live in West Virginia.

Jonathan Edwards On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/510259637/510406553" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Kinky Friedman performs live for Mountain Stage. Josh Saul/Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Josh Saul/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Kinky Friedman On Mountain Stage

The political songwriter and musical provocateur performs live in Charleston, W.Va.

Kinky Friedman On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/508946281/508953686" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

The folk duo Tall Heights performing at the Culture Center Theater in Charleston, W.Va. Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Tall Heights On Mountain Stage

The progressive folk duo makes its Mountain Stage debut with a live set in Charleston, W.Va.

Tall Heights On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/508085632/508087723" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Christian Lopez Band performs live for Mountain Stage in Charleston, W.Va. Josh Saul /Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Josh Saul /Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Christian Lopez Band On Mountain Stage

The up-and-coming Americana outfit plays songs from its debut album, Onward, live in West Virginia.

Christian Lopez Band On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/507247390/507249627" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
Back To Top