Songs We Love: Lera Lynn, 'Drive' A surf-noir rocker from the singer-songwriter who stole the second season of HBO's True Detective.

Songs We Love: Lera Lynn, 'Drive'


  • <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Lera Lynn Alysse Gafkjen/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

toggle caption
Alysse Gafkjen/Courtesy of the artist

Lera Lynn

Alysse Gafkjen/Courtesy of the artist

Drive hide caption

toggle caption

If you know Lera Lynn, you're likely to recognize the Nashville-based songwriter-guitarist from her appearance as the mysterious singer at The Black Rose, the dive bar featured in the second season of HBO's True Detective. Working with producer T-Bone Burnett and Rosanne Cash, Lynn crafted songs and performances that stole the show with an immediately captivating sadness, leading the viewer into the heart of darkness.

Lynn made her way to Nashville from Athens, where she went to school at the University of Georgia. She started playing music and wanted to make a change, and in 2014 released two albums, The Avenues, and Lying In The Sun, before beginning to work with Burnett towards the end of that year.

Lynn comes off as grim and sultry on True Detective, but as she told World Cafe host David Dye in an interview in the Fall of 2015, "The darkness is an aspect of the music that I make, but there's a lot more to the story." She points to listening to a lot of Joni Mitchell growing up (her mother was a big fan), and while her performances on the television program showcase one musical persona, Lynn's songs and delivery exhibits a broad emotional range, along with an unassuming-yet-powerful vocal style.

"Drive," from Lera's new album, Resistor, is true to its title. A surf-noir guitar line casts a shadow over the propulsive grooves, perfect for windows-rolled-down listening. It's a musically upbeat rocker that redirects her darkness on the edge of town to the bright charm of the highway strip.

Resistor is out on April 29 on Resistor Music.