Show Review: Lori McKenna at City Winery in DC

Show Reviews

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With a four-piece band, Lori McKenna kicked off her “Return to Bittertown” tour on Wednesday at City Winery to mark the 15th anniversary of the album “that changed everything.” Supported by opener Hailey Whitters, a McKenna acolyte who is gaining acclaim as one of the best unsigned songwriters you’ve not heard of, the tour was accompanied by the vinyl release of two re-recorded “Bittertown” songs — “Bible Song” and “Stealing Kisses.”

“Bittertown” was the album that helped break McKenna, a mother of five who lives with her childhood sweetheart in Stoughton, Mass. Since its release in 2004, she has become one of the most in-demand songwriters in Nashville, co-writing or writing hits for Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Little Big Town, Miranda Lambert, George Strait, Carrie Underwood, and Alison Krauss. In 2016, she became the first woman to win the Country Music Association’s “Song of the Year” award two years in a row for “Girl Crush” and “Humble and Kind,” both of which won Grammys as Best Country Song.

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