Dale Ann Bradley

Dale Ann Bradley earned national critical acclaim in 1997, topping both the bluegrass and country charts with her solo debut, East Kentucky Morning. The album’s release garnered favorable comparisons of the Kentucky native to Dolly Parton and Alison Kraus. Billboard magazine lauded Bradley’s “angelic voice,” while Music Row called her “a gentle mountain songbird with a shimmering delivery, marvelous purity of tone, soprano trills and lonesome bent notes.”

Bradley learned her powerful singing style in the Primitive Baptist Church, where her father was a minister. She began performing at the age of 14. In 1989 she became a member of the Renfro Valley Barn Dance, soon to become a regular on the famed Sunday Morning Gatherin’ radio show for the next eight years.

In 1992, she joined the New Coon Creek Girls as guitarist and lead singer. Formed in 1979, the group remained for a long time one of only a handful of all-female groups in the history of bluegrass and acoustic music. Following the tremendous success of Bradley’s East Kentucky Morning, the group shifted focus and acquired some male musicians. The new lineup debuted as Dale Ann Bradley and Coon Creek in 1998.

Bradley has continued working with Coon Creek as well as releasing award-winning sophomore and subsequent albums, all of which feature her amazing vocal talents and fun attitude for bluegrass song-craft and arrangement. In particular, she’s found a great deal of success turning hit pop tunes into hit bluegrass songs, as was the case for her bluegrass versions of U2’s “Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” and Steeler’s Wheels’ “Stuck in the Middle with You.” Regardless of the tune, however, her approach to performances remains the same—connecting with the audience at the deepest level and singing from the heart.

This artist appears in Jubilee #1403: Dale Ann Bradley.