One glorious day some years back, a teenage high school dropout Nikki Lane (née Nicole Lane Frady) packed a trailer with her worldly possessions. With one hand firmly gripping a steering wheel and the other flipping the bird, she said so long to her home, Greenville, South Carolina, The South and any sort of life it had suggested she should live. Western bound, she was headed to Los Angeles for no other reason than just because. Flash forward to today and we find Lane an empowered artist, having escaped any sweet and sour small town trappings for some serious see-my-name-in-lights grandeur and artistic fulfillment. Lane’s bold vocal chops and wildly infectious personality have been making a stir in circles spanning across country to rock to indie and back again.
Throughout the 11-track full length Walk of Shame, Lane weaves in and out of ballads of heartache, one-night stands, leaving, lust and longing. She plays the rambler and sometimes drunkard with such an ardent aptitude she’d fit right in alongside classic country icons like Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn and Dolly Parton. Sometimes the victim, sometimes the aggressor, always the Southern sweetheart, Lane rolls through song after song, belting out her earnest poetics with such warmth and tenderness to become entirely absorbed in this music is only natural. Lane settled in L.A. and without clear direction she worked various day-to-day jobs and dabbled in fashion, getting shoes manufactured in China and painting them to sell under the Nikki Lane moniker. Five years passed and she started writing music but forsook that path for a job offer across the country in New York City. "I'd always wanted to live in New York and somehow ended up talking my way into a really well paying job," she says. "That was an opportunity I couldn't say no to. And so I moved and for a year didn't even touch music."
But like any good country singer, heartbreak brought her back to music when her boyfriend left her to record an album in Atlanta. She started learning Waylon Jennings, Loretta Lynn, John Prine and Merle Haggard tunes, the sort of classic country songs that have steeped her own writing now, trying her best to strum along and building her confidence along the way. "And all of a sudden it hit me and I started writing like crazy," she says, "I wrote a whole album in a month's time and just decided I was going to make a record in Nashville. It was like my revenge record." Empowered, in February, 2009, Nikki went to Nashville, recorded an album she self-released titled No Room for Cowboys, and returned to New York a musician. That's essentially where IAMSOUND found her and signed her and set to build the material that would become Walk of Shame. Lane now lives in Nashville where she also owns and operates a vintage boutique called High Class Hillbilly, selling pieces she has collected while touring the country.