Shelby Lynne doesn’t describe her new album as a departure from her steeped-in-country earlier works, but rather as a reflection of where she is today as an artist.
Lynne’s debut Morgan Creek Records disc, “Temptation”– which hits retail July 6 — uses an efficient 18-piece, horn-heavy band to back her stellar vocal capabilities. The result is country meets big band.
“It’s who I am today,” the 24-year-old Lynne offers. “I grew up listening to the music of the ’30 and ’40s, so I’ve incorporated that into the album.” The music could be described as ’90s western swing.
Lynne admits that she doesn’t listen to much of what comprises country music today, and didn’t want to create an album that would have her competing with the “new country” sounds of a Wynonna or Trisha Yearwood. “The only time I listen to (today’s) country music is when I have the radio on while driving into town,” Lynne said.
After three critically successful albums for Sony, Lynne found herself without a record deal. After shopping the Nashville-based labels, Lynne met with Morgan Creek label head Jim Mazza. “It wasn’t working out for us in Nashville,” Lynne said. “But when I met Jim, it was an instant wonderful marriage.”
Lynne adds that the enthusiasm she received from everyone at Morgan Creek was a welcome change of pace. “It’s normally so difficult to get the executive types into the music. They’re always consumed with sales and stuff. These guys really cared about me and my music,” she said.
The Nashville resident admits that sales success with positive response from critics would be nice, but she has no illusions. “Having not had (a hit), I don’t know what I’d be missing. Of course we all want the acclaim, but sales are not that important to me,” Lynne says. She plans to make her road show “two hours of something to see as well as hear. I want to go out on the road so bad, if I could leave today I would.” A late ’93 or early ’94 tour is being discussed.
“I’m tired of mistakes,” Lynne said of her previous label experience. “There will be no more mistakes.”
Lynne said she would prefer to “let the world discover me without going through the motions to get to them. I’m going to keep it low-key this time.”