BETTYE LaVETTE continues her bold ascent with a GRAMMY nomination for Best Contemporary Blues Album for her CD THE SCENE OF THE CRIME (Anti- Records). Joined by the Drive-By Truckers as her backing band, BETTYE's essential new entry into the soul music canon channels more than 40 years of blood, sweat, and shattered dreams into one glorious catharsis.
"I haven't been this happy since 1962 when this whole thing started," declares an elated BETTYE.
It was 35 years ago in Muscle Shoals - a decade after she scored a top-ten hit with her debut single "My Man - He's A Lovin' Man" - that BETTYE recorded the career-defining masterpiece that never was: Atlantic Records inexplicably shelved the record. Scarred but not broken, BETTYE persevered as a tireless performer, honing her craft and focusing her heartbreak.
Now THE SCENE OF THE CRIME has indisputably become the career-defining masterpiece that is. On the heels of her critically lauded Anti- debut (2005's I've Got My Own Hell To Raise), SCENE has been garnering nonstop rave reviews - and not a few rhetorical questions:
NPR asks, "Is there any soul singer who brings more guts, more conviction and more emotion to her singing?" and Entertainment Weekly wonders, "Is there a more wrenching soul singer alive than Bettye LaVette?"
Elsewhere, the praise has been every bit as assertive as BETTYE herself is in redefining cuts like Elton John and Bernie Taupin's "Talking Old Soldiers," Willie Nelson's "Somebody Pick Up My Pieces," and Don Henley's "You Don't Know Me At All" on THE SCENE OF THE CRIME:
"LaVette's nuanced singing evokes prime Tina Turner with even more command," says Rolling Stone. Adds USA Today, "This album - Â¦just rips, with some truly sublime peaks." "The Scene of the Crime is a smoldering revelation displaying an artist nearly a half century into her career who is only now approaching the peak of her considerable powers," notes Paste. And the All Music Guide: "It gets better with each listen, and stands so far outside the realm of anything her better-known peers are doing today that it's almost scary."