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Amythyst Kiah is a singer/songwriter/fingerstyle guitarist and a contemporary roots-music fusionist based out of Johnson City, TN. Most people have a difficult time describing her sound, but she defines it simply as “southern roots music.” She has been performing in what is known as the Tri-Cities (Bristol, TN/VA, Johnson City, TN, Kingsport, TN) and in various parts of Southwest Virginia.
Not only are her influences eclectic, but they span across decades. She draws heavily on Old Time music (Mississippi Sheiks, Son House, Jimmie Rodgers, Olla Belle Reed, Carter Family) and is inspired by vocal stylings of R&B and Country music from the '50s-'70s (Big Mama Thornton, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Mahalia Jackson, Dolly Parton, Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn). She also draws heavily from contemporary artists that have similar powerful vocal integrity (Adele, Florence and the Machine, Megan Jean and the KFB, Janelle Monae, Bonnie Raitt). Needless to say, Amythyst has got a lot of tools in her vocal tool box, and is also well on her way to join the powerhouse vocalist pantheon. Her sound on her new album, “Dig”, is raw and sparse, with heavy lyrical content regarding such themes as loss, betrayal, and murder. She has opened for such acts as Tim O'Brien and Darrell Scott, The Duhks, Megan Jean and the KFB, performed on Music City Roots and has played the Smithsonian Folk Life Festival in 2012 alongside the Ebony Hillbillies and Sparky and Rhonda Rucker.