Margo Price "Strays Live at Grimey's" (2023 Record Store Day Black Friday LP)

For Record Store Day Black Friday 2023, country singer-songwriter Margo Price issued a limited edition vinyl LP titled Strays Live at Grimey's, recorded at Grimey’s New and Pre-loved Music store in Nashville on January 23, 2023. The LP was limited to 2,000 copies, and was pressed in sangria marble colored vinyl.

This six-song live set was recorded on the release date of Strays, the fourth studio album from Price. The Strays album purveyed an adult-alternative style of country music, written under the influence of psilocybin and distinguished by psychedelic sounds, with lyrics about the difficult healing of wounds from the past. In November of that same year, Price released a limited-edition companion album titled Strays II, containing outtakes from the proper album, recorded during the same sessions at producer Jonathan Wilson's studio in Topanga Canyon, California. Strays II offered a more down-to-earth ennead of alt-country tunes. That album was limited to 1,000 LP copies (Loma Vista LVRO3856), but is available digitally. However, the same may not apply to the other Strays companion disc issued in November 2023. As of this writing, the RSDBF Grimey's album has not been given the same digital availability.

For this zestful live set at the Nashville indie record shop, Price was backed by a six-piece band, which included her husband and co-writer Jeremy Ivey on guitar and harmonica. Four of the six songs were selections from the then-new Strays album, released on the day this show took place. With the possible exception of "Change Of Heart", these renditions have less of an alternative vibe than the studio versions, but certainly have an electric rock-and-roll vibe. "Been To The Mountain" comes on like a fairly straightforward -- and exciting -- hard-rock number. The organ-based ballad "County Road" also becomes a harder-rocking song in this setting, thanks to the constant drum beat and the Neil Young-like guitars that come in toward the end. "Light Me Up" begins at a slow country tempo, but builds up to a thrilling rock-and-roll crescendo. "Letting Me Down", a selection from Price's 2020 album That's How Rumors Get Started, has a sound that is faithful to that of its studio version, similar to much of today's country music with its rocky edges -- although the song is noticeably edgier in this setting. The final track is the most notable one: "Shelter Me" is an otherwise unreleased song which Price tells the audience was written for "a film that is not out yet". Judging from the sound of this performance, the song is apparently one designed for mainstream country consumption -- something that has generally eluded Price so far.

If you loved the Strays album enough to go for Strays II, then Strays Live at Grimey's will serve as another worthwhile accessory to the album.

Margo Price "Strays Live at Grimey's" (Loma Vista LVR03608) 2023

Track Listing:


1. Intro (0:27)
2. Letting Me Down (4:13)
3. Been To The Mountain (5:25)
4. Change of Heart (5:40)


5. County Road (6:35)
6. Light Me Up (5:39)
7. Shelter Me (3:10)