Hailing from the Appalachian Mountains in Kentucky, Tyler Childers is part of a wave of 2010s Americana artists who prize authenticity both in their songs and sound. Sonically, Childers borrows heavily from the weathered, ornery progressive country records of the '70s, a comparison brought into sharp relief on his second album, 2017's Purgatory, which was produced by the acclaimed Americana rocker Sturgill Simpson.
Purgatory may have been Childers' breakthrough, but he'd been playing professionally for over half a decade, and playing since he was a child in Lawrence County, Kentucky. As a young adult, he relocated to Lexington, Kentucky and played with a band called the Food Stamps. He began his solo career with the self-released 2011 album Bottles & Bibles, and he continued to write and perform over the next five years. Miles Miller, a friend of Childers and drummer for Sturgill Simpson, introduced the two singer/songwriters and Simpson decided to produce a record for Childers with the assistance of engineer David Ferguson. The resulting Purgatory arrived in August 2017 on Thirty Tigers, followed in 2018 by Live on Red Barn Radio I & II, a reissue of a pair of EPs taken from two 2013 performances for the Lexington-based Red Barn Radio program. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine