For Fans of: Alison Krauss, Bonnie Raitt, the Dixie Chicks
Why You Should Pay Attention: This four-woman band (started in Boston, but now spread across New Hampshire, Nashville and Brooklyn) scored a Grammy nomination for Best Bluegrass Album two years ago for This World Oft Can Be. Now, working with producer Jacquire King (Tom Waits, Norah Jones), they've expanded their sonic palette and slowed down the pace on Della Mae (out May 12th), even delivering a great, soulful cover of the Rolling Stones' "No Expectations."
They Say: Woodsmith says the band thrives on the road due to the kindness of fans — staying at their homes, eating their home-cooked meals and accepting their invitations to go whitewater rafting. "Success for us looks like being able to be on the road 100 days a year and then live the lives we want back home. Not extravagant. I don't need a million dollars."
Hear for Yourself: "Empire" is a fiddle-fried piece of postcolonial feminism. Gavin Edwards