Belonging to a genre most often described as alternative-country, I find Neko Case to be the perfect music for people who ordinarily wouldn’t find themselves listening to any sort of country.
She started her career in the early 90’s playing in various punk rock bands before releasing her first album of country, The Virginian (which was primarily a collection of great cover songs) in 1997. It’s on this album where Neko covers Ernest Tubb‘s song ‘Thanks A Lot.’
During the following years, Neko worked on material which would eventually comprise her 2000 album, Furnace Room Lullaby, which served as the perfect spotlight for her smooth and powerful voice. From this album I have included a live version of the title song which provides a great example of Ms Case’s personality onstage. Although she sings a bit off key toward the end, she quickly and humorously dismisses the flaw as the result to being ill. Her imperfections only add to her charm.
Later that same year, Neko contributed to New Coat Of Paint: The Songs Of Tom Waits, beautifully delivering Waits’s ‘Christmas Card From A Hooker In Minneapolis.’
And she keeps getting better. For in 2002, Neko returned with her latest offering, the dark Blacklisted, which has introduced her to her widest audience yet and amassed her best reviews.