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“Georgia On All Of Our Minds”
Well, when it comes to Georgia, there’s no one better to talk to than Amy Ray. The Decatur-born singer songwriter may have started her collegiate career at Vanderbilt but her coming back home to attend Emory in Atlanta has been a kind of metaphor for her life: She’s been all around the world but she always comes back to Georgia.Ray is one half of the internationally beloved Grammy Award winning band the Indigo Girls and along with Emily Sailers, they’ve put out 15 studio albums, including 2020’s marvellous effort Look Long. Ray, who has put out six solo albums including 2018s awesome Holler, is a punk at heart and she’s collaborated with everyone from The Butches to Joan Jett. Armed with an infectious lippy snarl and pure folk finesse, Ray is truly one of the greatest American songwriters out there and her lyrics are always literary, socially conscious and deeply felt. Her new single “Tear It Down” tackles the spirit of southern rebellion and its complicated history. Written with Nina Simone and Billie Holiday in mind, on this track Ray grapples with what it truly means to be anti-racist by deconstructing the symbols and myths that she feels perpetuate racism in the first place. In other words, can you be a proud southerner, living in the south while also rejecting the iconography that embroiders the landscape? A record label owner, a mother, a partner and a social activist , Amy Ray is the real deal and every number she writes adds more depth and power to the American Songbook. In this conversation she talks to Alex about the political climate in Georgia, her love of punk rock and why a songwriting slump can be a valuable thing. She also talks about the upcoming Senatorial runoff, her love of fiction and why though she can live anywhere she wants, her heart will always belong to Georgia.