Rhiannon Giddens is nominated for “Best Roots Album” for Factory Girl and for “Best American Roots Performance” for “Factory Girl.” She already has one Grammy, for her work with the Carolina Chocolate Drops for Best” Traditional Folk Album” for Genuine Negro Jig, in 2011.
Giddens has a new album, Freedom Highway, due out on Feb. 24, 2017. The album will include nine original songs and three covers, per American Songwriter. She has also scored a recurring role on the cast of CMT’s “Nashville,” as a social worker with the voice of an angel.
This song is on the album, Freedom Highway, which will be released Feb. 24, 2017. It was inspired by a 19th century poster advertising the sale of Negro slave, with a nine-month old baby available “at the purchaser’s option.”
"I have a babe but shall I keep him
'Twill come the day when I'll be weepin'
But how can I love him any less
This little babe upon my breast
You can take my body
You can take my bones
You can take my blood
But not my soul"
4. "Cry No More"
“Cry No More” was released as a one-take, live video, written in responses to the shooting in Charleston at the AME Church in 2015. Giddens wrote her reasons for creating the song, per NPR. Giddens wrote,” The massacre at the AME church is just the latest in a string of racially charged events that have broken my heart. There are a lot of things to fix in this country, but history says if we don't address this canker, centuries in the making, these things will continue to happen. No matter what level privilege you have, when the system is broken everybody loses. We all have to speak up when injustice happens. No matter what.”
"First, they sold our bodies
I can’t cry no more
Then they sold our sons
I can’t cry no more"
3. "Tomorrow is My Turn"
The title track for the album Tomorrow is My Turn, which is produced by T-Bone Burnett.
"When summer is gone
There's another to come
You can't stop years drifting by
Even if you want to try "
2. “Angel City”
"Angel City” is from the album, Tomorrow is My Turn, which is a traditional bluegrass album.
"I am found where I was lost, I am closer to free
Heart unbound, whatever the cost, all rivers fall to the sea
Time and time at hand, you helped me over the sand
Gently rising to be, you walked a mile with me
And I saw the sea"
1. "Factory Girl"
The title track for the album Factory Girl is Grammy nominated for “Best Roots Performance.” A young lad walks on a beautiful summer morning, as the birds’ whistle and sing. He is enchanted by a fair factory girl.
"The crowd gathered round, couldn't hide the destruction
I cast my eyes on it in such disbelief
A truth of the world settled into the ashes
The rich men's neglect is the poor man's grief
As I stood there a whisper it did caress me
A faint scent of roses my senses begun
I lifted my face and I saw that above me
A thousand young butterflies darkened the sun "