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Lucinda Williams: Tiny Desk (Home) Concert

The Tiny Desk is working from home for the foreseeable future. Introducing NPR Music's Tiny Desk (home) concerts, bringing you performances from across the country and the world. It's the same spirit — stripped-down sets, an intimate setting — just a different space.

To me, it's still thrilling to see a concert in an office — even if it's not the one, back at NPR, that I'm used to. Lucinda Williams and her guitar mate, Stuart Mathis, set up shop for this performance at Thirty Tigers' headquarters in Nashville, a place usually filled with artist managers and folks who distribute music, including hers.

Lucinda kicks off this Tiny Desk (home) concert with a nod to the present moment, a song called "Bad News Blues" from her 2020 release, Good Souls Better Angels:

Fools and thieves and clowns and hypocrites,
Gluttony and greed, and that ain't the worst of it.

When it closes, Lucinda says, "we've had our share of bad news, even before this lockdown thing." The COVID-19 crisis has kept her from seeing her other bandmates, who are out in California, but this minimalist pairing, of Lucinda's voice and Stuart's sliding blues, is quite the treat.


  • "Bad News Blues"
  • "Big Black Train"
  • "You Can't Rule Me"
  • "Man Without A Soul"

    Lucinda Williams — vocals, guitar; Stuart Mathis — guitar


    Audio by Ray Kennedy; video by Stevie Rees; Producer: Bob Boilen, Tom Overby, Ray Kennedy, Lucinda Williams; Audio Mastering Engineer: Josh Rogosin; Video Producer: Morgan Noelle Smith; Associate Producer: Bobby Carter; Executive Producer: Lauren Onkey; Senior VP, Programming: Anya Grundmann

    Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

    In 1988, a determined Bob Boilen started showing up on NPR's doorstep every day, looking for a way to contribute his skills in music and broadcasting to the network. His persistence paid off, and within a few weeks he was hired, on a temporary basis, to work for All Things Considered. Less than a year later, Boilen was directing the show and continued to do so for the next 18 years.