Blending country, folk, and pop styles, Lucy Kaplansky has the unique ability to make every song sound fresh, whether singing her own sweet originals, covering country classics by June Carter Cash and Gram Parsons, or singing pop favorites by the Beatles and Nick Lowe. Kaplansky’s iconic voice has been featured in film and on television, including in commercials for Chevrolet’s iconic “Heartbeat of America” jingle. A Billboard-charting singer and one of the top-selling artists on Red House Records, she has topped the folk and Americana radio charts and has been featured on shows throughout the world, from National Public Radio’s Weekend Edition and Morning Edition to BBC Radio and CBS Sunday Morning. One of the most in-demand harmony singers, Kaplansky has sung on countless records, performing with Suzanne Vega, Bryan Ferry, Nanci Griffith, and Shawn Colvin.
Raised by a piano-playing mathematician and a homemaker in Chicago, Illinois, Kaplansky began singing in bars when she was still a teenager, even traveling to Norway to perform as a country singer. When she was just out of high school, she took off for New York City, where she became part of the renaissance of the Greenwich Village folk scene centered on Folk City and the Fast Folk recordings. The New York Times said it was “easy to predict stardom for her,” but instead Kaplansky got a doctorate in psychology and started a private practice.
Eventually, Shawn Colvin lured Kaplansky back to music, producing her debut album, The Tide (1994). Red House founder Bob Feldman was blown away by the release and signed her right away. Since then, Kaplansky has made six solo albums with Red House and released radio-charting albums with the folk supergroups Red Horse (with Eliza Gilkyson and John Gorka) and Cry Cry Cry (with Dar Williams and Richard Shindell).
Kaplansky weaves . . . fragile lives together, making even tenuous connections as palpable as flesh and blood.
New York songwriter Lucy Kaplansky is becoming the troubadour laureate of modern city folk.