A Mainstream Country Star Even Americana Fans Can Love

As listeners, and as media, we sure like to divide music up into subgenres. There’s not simply rap—there’s gangsta rap and backback hip-hop, and a hundred shades in between. There’s not just punk—there’s hardcore and pop-punk, completely at odds with each other. Some of these dividing lines are the source of arguments, perhaps none more bitter than the one that pits “new country” against “Americana.”

Among those rare singers who can appease both sides, and bridge the two, is Miranda Lambert, a stadium country star who could fit comfortably on any Americana playlist. It's not unusual to hear her singing a John Prine song, and she’s covered the renegade folk performer Fred Eaglesmith, too. And yet, because she’s on the covers of supermarket tabloids, she gets lumped in with “new country,” which I think is unfair to her immense talent as a songwriter. Live, she’s one of the most electrifying country singers I’ve ever seen, and she returns to the Bay Area on Friday, Feb. 28, at the SAP Center in San Jose.—Gabe Meline

February 28, 2020

SAP Center
525 W. Santa Clara St., San Jose

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