Tift Merritt.
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

Robbie Fulks. Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Robbie Fulks On Mountain Stage

Hear the subversive alt-country singer-songwriter perform live in Lexington, Ky.

Robbie Fulks On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/491078569/491078961" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Larry Groce. Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Larry Groce On Mountain Stage

Hear the Mountain Stage host and founder play a full set of songs from his first album in 27 years.

Larry Groce On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/490203668/490209480" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Steve Poltz. Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Steve Poltz On Mountain Stage

The songwriter plays an energetic set that highlights material from his latest album, Folksinger.

Steve Poltz On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/489329678/489336801" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

The Wood Brothers Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

The Wood Brothers On Mountain Stage

The sibling folk band, which recently released Paradise, performs six songs live in West Virginia.

The Wood Brothers On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/488366373/488368632" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Hayes Carll. Brian Blauser /Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser /Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Hayes Carll On Mountain Stage

The Texas singer-songwriter performs songs from Lovers And Leavers live on stage in West Virginia.

Hayes Carll On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/487508318/487515111" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Darrell Scott Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Darrell Scott On Mountain Stage

Hear the singer-songwriter pay tribute to his mentor, Guy Clark, live on stage in West Virginia.

Darrell Scott On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/486632753/486639734" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Sarah Jarosz Josh Saul /Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Josh Saul /Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Sarah Jarosz On Mountain Stage

The singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist performs songs from her new album, Undercurrent.

Sarah Jarosz On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/485697585/485731956" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Elephant Revival. Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Elephant Revival On Mountain Stage

Formed in Colorado a decade ago, the band draws on Celtic, Americana and folk, among other styles.

Elephant Revival On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/484826011/484826388" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Brett Dennen. Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Brett Dennen On Mountain Stage

Hear the singer-songwriter perform six heartfelt songs, recorded live on stage in West Virginia.

Brett Dennen On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/482930978/482942071" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Liz Vice Brian Blauser /Mountain Stage hide caption

toggle caption Brian Blauser /Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage

Liz Vice On Mountain Stage

The singer performs four songs live, including a haunting cover of "Smells Like Teen Spirit."

Liz Vice On Mountain Stage

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/482015217/482021108" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
Back To Top