Anita Cochran Biography

6 February 1967, South Lyon, Michigan, USA. A more self-contained and independent artist than many of country’s crop of female singers from the late 90s, Cochran’s acclaimed debut album saw her co-produce, write or co-write nine of the 10 songs and play all the guitar, banjo and mandolin parts ? a situation that was unique for a debut album within country music’s paternalistic major label environs. Cochran grew up in a music loving household, and started to practice guitar from the age of five. Her father, who played guitar and mandolin, was a keen student of music and took his young daughter to country and bluegrass festivals throughout the Midwest. Her own favourites were Loretta Lynn and Johnny Cash, and by the age of 12 she was assembling her own recording equipment at home. After she took up the electric guitar at age 18, her influences changed to Ricky Skaggs and Steve Wariner. It was with Wariner that she first rose to prominence. They duetted on the Cochran original ‘What If I Said’, that went straight to number 1 on the US country charts. It was included on a debut album that left several mainstream and country critics astounded. Not only were Cochran’s guitar breaks imaginative and fluid, her voice able and flexible, but her songwriting conveyed a narrative depth that had a number of bodies rushing to shower her with awards, including the Country Music Association and Music City News.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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