Folk legend’s long-awaited return to our shores
FRESH from her latest Grammy win, Patty Griffin will grace our shores for the first time in more than a decade.
With Billie Eilish dominating the awards ceremony, you may have missed the news that Griffin's latest, self-titled album was named Best Folk Album.
Not that she was there to collect the award in person.
"No (laughs), that's not my kind of thing," she says. "I've been nominated a few times. I went to one and that was fun, but that's all I needed to do."
Last here in 2008 for sold-out shows, the Texan performer has attracted a cult-following with her passionate performance style, telling heartfelt stories with her powerful vocals.
"I can't believe I get to come back," she says.
"I'm not looking forward to the plane ride. I'm reading this essay by a writer who loves 15-hour plane rides because time stops and there's no internet. I'm going to try to have that attitude.
"It's a long, long way, so it requires some planning. For a while it was just one thing after the other of it not working in the time frame allowed.
"Last summer I was talking to the band when we were riding around on the tour bus and an offer came in from Australia. The guys from the band had never been and I said 'I think we need to go'."
Patty Griffin is the folk singer's first release since her battle with breast cancer.
"I had some health problems and I just getting back on my feet," she says.
"Yeah, the party life is over, but I think that would have happened anyway. I'm actually having a really good time. I think I have more fun than I used to have, especially with the audience. I have a much deeper appreciation, for some reason. I'm not sure how that happened, but I'm much more aware and less terrified of them."
Touring regional centres, as well as the cities, on her seven-date tour was important to Griffin.
She promises a mix of her new music and "some old stuff" when she plays Lismore City Hall.
"For me it's like walking into a story book, like a fairytale town on the other side of the earth where the water goes down the drain the other way," she says. "You feel the distance from what you're familiar with.
"We think of the world as being small, because of the internet especially, so it's nice to be reminded about how small we are on it. It's exciting going all these places and seeing all the humanity isn't on your radar.
"Last time I was there I remember these magical gigs in these idyllic looking places with these old trees. Hearing about your fires, I'm hoping they're still there. I have a little bit of an idea of the heartbreak Australia is in right now."
Patty Griffin plays The Tivoli in Brisbane on March 12 and Lismore City Hall on March 13.