Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Inimitable and Incandescent Iris DeMent

I don't really know how to describe Iris DeMent's voice, and I can't quite explain why her singing "sticks to my ribs" like it does, but damn, when she sings, her voice just insinuates its way into you. If you need any proof, here's an 18 song collection - there's one track from each of her formal releases (Infamous Angel, My Life, Way I Should Be, and Lifeline) plus live tracks, soundtrack and tribute contributions, duets, etc.

(We're Not) The Jet Set
There's A Whole Lot Of Heaven
Big City
I'm Still In Love With You
I Don't Want To Get Adjusted
I Miss A Lot Of Trains
The Way I Should
Hobo Bill's Last Ride
God May Forgive You
Banks of Marble
Wildwood Flower
Trust Each Other
Whispering Pines
You've Done Nothing Wrong
The Train Carrying Jimmie Rodgers Home
Mexican Home
Acres of Corn
Mama's Opry


simon2307 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
simon2307 said...

Her voice just kills me, one of a kind for sure, God May Forgive You my pick from this collection, but Hotter Than Mojave in My Heart is my favourite.

Anonymous said...

Extraordinary ...I'm from France & didn't hear of Iris till now.

Thanks a lot!


Anonymous said...

Thanks, not only for the Iris Dement, but for your blog in general. Great Stuff. Our taste in music overlaps enough that I usually find something I like, but is different enough that I often find something new and interesting.

Keep up the excellent work

Anonymous said...

I had the chance to see Iris with Peter Rowan back in 1994 she was amazing.The one one thing I remember was how beautiful and glowing she became as she stood alone on the stage.
Thank you for sharing the great music. John from Tucson.

Ishkabibliophile said...

Glad (but certainly not surprised) to find folks that like Iris as much as I do. For the newcomers to Iris, I'd especially recommend her first cd Infamous Angel and then Lifeline

Music for Songwriters said...

I love listening to her!...thanks for sharing!...kudos!...

Sam said...

Nice one. I've been diggin' Iris for a few years now, and her voice still kills me. I think I've got all these tracks. But I especially love 'There's a Whole Lot of Heaven''. For me the only female artist who comes close to conveying as much emotion in her voice is Freakwaters' Catherine Irwin. Have you heard her?

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this collection. I've heard a couple of Iris' songs scattered throughout the last twenty years and I have her 'Lifeline' album from 1993. She's been on my list of people to check out but I never got around to her. You've made it easy for me to dig deeper.

bostig said...

A large thanks

Ishkabibliophile said...

I do like Catherine Irwin quite a bit, though I think I'll always be partial to Iris. :)

Always glad to help anyone become a bigger Iris fan. I think the nice thing about the comp (just a small pat on my own back) is that it shows off her talent for duets.

@bostig and music,

Glad to do it!

Paul said...

Thanks for this great mix. I just found your blog on Google and it looks great! I can't wait to dig into some of the other posts (particularly the "Southern Rock" mix with Pylon and Guadalcanal Diary).

Jay Ess said...

Thanks for this--it's just what I've been looking for. What a voice!

Ishkabibliophile said...

@Jay Ess,

Happy to oblige!

Donna said...

Hey, how do I send you a new artist to listen to? I've always thought that this guy is a male version of Iris, or vice versa....

It's Grant Peeples. I'm his biggest fan, (and publicist). I'd love to mail you a cd if you give me the address.
email me at

My favorite on this mix"tape" is The Way I Should

kurt said...

I find her voice is not dissimilar to loretta lynn, just checked it on her site and she quotes loretta as being one of her influences. thanks for the sounds.

Ishkabibliophile said...

You can definitely hear the Loretta Lynn influence, but Iris really does have a unique style of her own.

GTD said...

Any chance of a re-upload? Thanks

Ishkabibliophile said...


I just changed the site where it was stored. Enjoy!