An ice cold glass of sweet tea melts in your hand, as you lean back on your chair and gaze out into the horizon. Butter beans and rice simmer on the stovetop, the scent permeating through the screen door as it slyly sneaks up to your nose. The latest Jenni Lyn Gardner album plays through the speakers, filling the air with a sound that's both current and nostalgic...
That all too familiar Southern scene sets the foundation on which Gardner herself was built. Born and raised in South Carolina, the bluegrass songstress knew she'd be Nashville bound from her early childhood days. The artist credits her musical family, beginning with her banjo playing grandmother, for instilling in her a passion for music and a love of bluegrass when she was just five years old. She was raised proper on the genre greats Bill Monroe, Flatt & Scruggs, Jimmy Martin, JD Crowe, Larry Sparks, Alison Krauss, Blue Highway, Tony Rice... the list goes on.
"I had the incredible fortune of meeting Bill Monroe backstage at a bluegrass festival when I was 9 years old," Jenni Lyn recalls. "The two of us played a song together and without hesitation, I played the 'Two Bits' when he finished playing 'Shave and a Haircut.' We shared a laugh and just before parting ways he leaned down and said to me, 'Little girl, one day you are going be a star.'"
Bill Monroe was no fool. Over Gardner's time as a solo artist and as a member of several collaborative projects (including the all female bluegrass band Della Mae) she racked up a number of prestigious awards including:
IBMA Emerging Artist of the Year (Della Mae), IBMA Recorded Event of the Year (The Daughters of Bluegrass) and a coveted GRAMMY nomination for Best Bluegrass Album (Della Mae).
She's graced the stage of Nashville's beloved Ryman Auditorium, as well as numerous festivals including Bonnaroo, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival, and Cambridge Folk. Her career continues to blossom with each appearance in the 30+ countries she's performed in worldwide.
From baby boomers to millennials, seasoned festival goers to country converts, Jenni Lyn's music offers a current approach to the evolving bluegrass sound, while maintaining the perfect balance of that down home comfort. Her broad span of shared experiences and collaborations has shaped Gardner as an artist and as a performer, all culminating in an exciting new album that showcases her well-developed repertoire of songs. The forthcoming release, Burn Another Candle, is sweetened with originality, seasoned with love and strengthened with a solid work ethic and commitment to her solo career. Fans will connect with the energy and feel of the music, a testament to the heart Jenni Lyn has brought to this new chapter in her musical journey - a journey that you'll savor with every nuanced note.
"In this day and age it's refreshing to hear an artist whose music comes straight from the heart. Jenni Lyn Gardner is undoubtedly such, with one foot planted deep in tradition and the other bound for uncharted territory. Her first solo album Burn Another Candle brings us songs from bluegrass, newgrass, old time, and an original gospel number from her youth. These songs and performances touch on today's issues yet recall a time of sweet ice tea, fresh tomatoes, triple fiddles and that 'high lonesome sound.' An original instrumental features Jenni Lyn's remarkable mandolin chops and shows us that her heart beats in the key of B (the bluegrass key). So stop, pick the flowers, relax and take a listen. As her song says, "Hickory Holler is a state of mind," and that is where Jenni Lyn's musical journey takes us. Let's all enjoy the ride. "
— Sam Bush