What would it take for you to pack up everything you own and drive to Los Angeles with no job or future prospects? As a teenager in Greenville, South Carolina, Nikki Lane did exactly that, slogging through random jobs while writing the first of many country- and rockabilly-inspired songs. While living in New York years later, Lane’s boyfriend broke up with her to record an album of his own, allowing the singer to channel her pain and anger into her songs. You probably know where this is going.
As she became a student of outlaw country singers like Merle Haggard and Waylon Jennings, Nikki Lane’s material became more focused, leading to the just-released Gone, Gone, Gone EP and upcoming release of the singer’s debut LP, Walk of Shame. At least breakups are good for something.
“Gone, Gone, Gone,” the album’s lead single produced by Fool’s Gold’s Lewis Pesacov, is an exuberant kiss-off to her native city, showcasing the singer’s itinerant lifestyle spent crisscrossing the country. Lane is that one friend that always gets antsy spending too much time in one spot, and on “Gone, Gone, Gone,” her lack of deserved recognition manifests itself musically. “19 years I’ve been here waiting/for something good to come my way,” sings Lane. “But there is no sign of my luck changing/Even though my bills have sure been paid.”
There’s a shortage of badass female country singers today who can outdrink you and write a gorgeous melody afterward. And given the strength of Lane’s material, look for her luck to be changing very soon.
Gone, Gone, Gone is out now through IAMSOUND. Walk of Shame is set for release Sept. 27.
+ Listen to Nikki Lane.