Nanci Griffith “One Fair Summer Evening”

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#977 in the Series ) is Nanci Griffith, One Fair Summer Evening.

“Variety; Learning about different types of music; bringing different genres to different people.”   These were just some of the objectives that we publically discussed when we started this project just about a year ago.

We’re most definitely going to continue in that direction tonight.  This is one of those albums that requires you to “be in the proper” mood. However, when you are, this album is about as good as it gets.

“What mood is that?” you ask?  Mostly a mellow feeling I’d say, interested in hearing some wonderfully written songs being sung by a woman with a marvelous voice that demands your attention. You have to be in the mood to hear to music that’s presented with sweet harmonies over just basic piano and guitar. I think you got the idea.

I wasn’t familiar with Nanci Griffith when I heard this album. Well, I knew who she was, I’d heard of her name, but I don’t think I’d heard anything that she did.

I don’t even remember how I first got ahold of this album. I think it might have been a promo copy siting around the old office.  I do remember the first time I played it. I heard this little voice who welcomed her audience.  Then I heard this little voice sing the first line in the opening number, then WHAM I hear this great voice just take over the song. I really was not expecting what I heard.

I would eventually spend hours and days listening to the great album.  I could not put it down for some time.  It really stayed with me for a long, long time.

Much of what makes things special here is Nanci’s long time piano partner James Hooker. He’s been with her for years.

There are some wonderful melodies here along with some great storytelling. “Trouble in the Fields” tells us once again about the plight of farmers trying to make a living in the middle of dust.  “Deadwood, South Dakota” tells us a little about Crazy Horse.

This might not be for everyone. If it is for you then enjoy it like I do. It’s quite a moving record.  When you listen to it and are in the right mood, it will really get to you.

— Larry Carta

Track listing

All tracks composed by Nanci Giffith; except where indicated

  1. “Once in a Very Blue Moon” (Patrick Alger, Eugene Levine) – 2:53
  2. “Looking for the Time (Workin’ Girl)” – 2:52
  3. “Deadwood, South Dakota” (Eric Taylor) – 4:59
  4. “More Than a Whisper” (Griffith, Bobby Nelson) – 3:39
  5. “I Would Bring You Ireland” – 3:21
  6. “Roseville Fair” (Bill Staines) – 3:32
  7. “Workin’ in Corners” – 3:58
  8. “Trouble in the Fields” (Griffith, Rick West) – 3:57
  9. “The Wing and the Wheel” – 3:11
  10. “From a Distance” (Julie Gold) – 4:37
  11. “Love at the Five and Dime” – 7:08
  12. “Spin on a Red Brick Floor”- 3:11


  • Nanci Griffith – Guitar (Acoustic), Liner Notes, Producer, Vocals
  • Denny Bixby – Bass, Vocal Harmony
  • Denice Franke – Vocal Harmony, Vocals
  • James Hooker – Keyboards, Vocal Harmony
  • Doug Hudson – Vocal Harmony


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Posted by Larry Carta

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