Brittany Howard has been packing theaters and wowing festival crowds with the songs of Jaime, her first solo album. Now, the Alabama Shakes frontwoman has given NPR's Tiny Desk a show as mighty as her typical set.
On Tuesday (Oct. 15), NPR Music released their latest recording of their beloved concert series, which featured an abbreted taste of Jaime and warm commentary from Howard in between songs. Starting with "Stay High," she hit the cloud-grazing notes in her impressive range, softly singing through the verses and nailing each romantic chorus.
Before shy slow jam "Georgia," Howard gave a little background about the first love song she ever wrote for a female object of her affection: "I wrote from the perspective of being a little young, black, gay girl having a crush on an older black girl and then not knowing how to tell her, what to say or what I was feeling."
Howard previously told Billboard that "Georgia" is her favorite song on Jaime. "I really wrote it just because I never heard a song like that before," she said. "I thought, 'Oh, how cool, what a cool opportunity to write about this in this way!' It’s actually my favorite song because of that. I’ve never heard anything like it. Maybe somebody else has, but I haven’t. It remains my favorite."
The syrupy, lovelorn "Baby" followed, as did the slow-burning "Goat Head," which revisits her experiences growing up as the biracial daughter of parents subject to horrifying harassment in a small town in Alabama. "Goat Head" got no introduction, but it doesn't need one, either: the track is Howard's most personal on the new album and one that pulls directly from her family history.