Photo by Ebru Yildiz

Rhiannon Giddens Just Won a Pulitzer. Now She’s Dropping Her First Solo Album in Six Years

The singer-songwriter’s latest is her first album of all original songs and includes an appearance by Jason Isbell.


By Jon Freeman for Rolling Stone

Rhiannon Giddens has announced plans for her first solo album in six years. You’re the One will be released Aug. 18 via Nonesuch Records and marks the Pulitzer Prize winner’s first collection of all-original songs.

Giddens offered a preview of the project with the title track, a joyous, lovestruck ode to a partner who erased her doubts and made her world colorful. “I wanna love you forever/And I’ll be with you/For worse and for better/And I never thought I’d fall/But you’re the one,” she sings, her banjo accompanied by a full production that swells and swoons along with her.

You’re the One was produced by Jack Splash (Solange, Kendrick Lamar) and includes musical contributions by Giddens’ partner, multi-instrumentalist Francesco Turrisi, as well as Dirk Powell, Jason Sypher, and Congolese guitarist Niwel Tsumbu. Singer-songwriter Jason Isbell gets a featured credit on a track called “Yet to Be.”

“I hope that people just hear American music,” Giddens said in a release. “Blues, jazz, Cajun, country, gospel, and rock — it’s all there. I like to be where it meets organically. They’re fun songs, and I wanted them to have as much of a chance as they could to reach people who might dig them but don’t know anything about what I do.”

The album announcement comes during a huge week for Giddens, who was just awarded a Pulitzer Prize in Music for the opera Omar, which she co-wrote with Michael Abels. Giddens is also a MacArthur Foundation “Genius Grant” winner. Her two most recent albums, 2019’s There Is No Other and 2021’s They’re Calling Me Home, are collaborations with Turrisi. Before that, her previous solo album was 2017’s Freedom Highway.

You’re the One track list:

  1. “Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad”
  2. “You’re the One”
  3. “Yet to Be” (feat. Jason Isbell)
  4. “Wrong Kind of Right”
  5. “Another Wasted Life”
  6. “You Louisiana Man”
  7. “If You Don’t Know How Sweet It Is”
  8. “Hen in the Foxhouse”
  9. “Who Are You Dreaming Of”
  10. “You Put the Sugar in My Bowl”
  11. “Way Over Yonder”
  12. “Good Ol’ Cider”