Loading Events

Tyler Childers with Blank Range

Like many great Southern storytellers, singer-songwriter Tyler Childers has fallen in love with a place. The people, landmarks and legendary moments from his childhood home of Lawrence County, Kentucky, populate the 10 songs in his formidable debut, Purgatory, an album that’s simultaneously modern and as ancient as the Appalachian Mountains in which events unfold.

The album, co-produced by Grammy Award winners Sturgill Simpson and David Ferguson, is a semiautobiographical sketch of Childers’ growth from wayward youth to happily married man, told in the tradition of a Southern gothic novel with a classic noir antihero who may just be irredeemable. Purgatory is a chiaroscuro painting with darkness framing light in high relief. There’s catharsis and redemption. Sin and temptation. Murder and deceit. Demons and angels. Moonshine and cocaine. So much moonshine and cocaine. All played out on the large, colorful canvas of Eastern Kentucky.

Childers had been searching for a certain sound for his debut album for years as he honed his craft, and was finding it elusive when his friend, drummer Miles Miller, introduced him to Simpson, the Grammy Award-winning musician and fellow Kentuckian. Childers sent Simpson a group of his songs, then went to visit him in Nashville.

“And he said, ‘There’s this sound. I know what you’re trying to get at, the mountain sound,'” Childers recalled. “‘So I asked, ‘What are you doing?'”

Intrigued, Simpson enlisted the aid of Ferguson, the Grammy Award winning sound engineer. They assembled a band that included multi-instrumentalists Stuart Duncan, Michael J. Henderson and Russ Pahl, bassist Michael Bub and Miller on drums, of course, and helped Childers make a debut album of consequence that announces an authentic new voice.

“I was writing an album about being in the mountains,” Childers said. “I wanted it to have that gritty mountain sound. But at the same time, I wanted a more modern version of it that a younger generation can listen to — the people I grew up with, something I’d want to listen to.”

The Fillmore Blog

  • 2nd Show Added for KHRUANGBIN on May 1st

    Due to popular demand, we have added a 2nd show with the great Khruangbin on May...
    MORE

  • SPIN: NEW MUSIC Alvvays – “Dreams To...

    A brand new single from Alvvays is available via SPIN today for your Tuesday af...
    MORE

  • Stream: Hurray for The Riff Raff's The N...

    Stream the new album from Hurray for the Riff Raff, The Navigator, over at NPR o...
    MORE

  • Sponsors

  • citi
    Pepsi Co.
    lagunitas
  • Latest Posts

  • 2nd Show Added for KHRUANGBIN on May 1st
    MORE

    SPIN: NEW MUSIC Alvvays – “Dreams Tonite”
    MORE

    Stream: Hurray for The Riff Raff's The Navigator
    MORE

    Watch: Japandroids on Colbert
    MORE

    2 nights with STS9 at The Masonic & The Fillmore!
    MORE

bottom-tagline