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Natalie Merchant

After rising to fame at the helm of the popular folk-rock band 10,000 Maniacs, Natalie Merchant enjoyed even greater success as a solo artist during the mid-'90s. Her literate, socially conscious songs established her among the preeminent women in pop music, while her solo debut -- 1995's Tigerlily -- helped pave the way for a number of female performers in a pre-Lilith Fair market. She continued releasing albums well into the 2000s, often examining specific genres or subjects, although Tigerlily remained her biggest-selling record. Born October 26, 1963, in Jamestown, New York, Merchant joined 10,000 Maniacs at the age of 17 and became the band's driving artistic force. After a pair of successful independent releases, they signed to Elektra in 1985 and briefly became one of the most popular acts in alternative rock, shooting into the Top 40 with 1987's In My Tribe and charting even higher with their follow-up effort, Blind Man's Zoo. Merchant's desire to launch a solo career increased and the band's reputation continued to grow. By the time the group sat down to record 1992's Our Time in Eden, she gave her bandmates two years' notice. Following the release of MTV Unplugged in 1994, she publicly announced she was leaving the group's ranks. Merchant made her solo debut with 1995's Tigerlily, a self-produced album that debuted at number 13 and scored a Top Ten single with "Carnival." Two additional singles, "Wonder" and "Jealousy," also cracked the Top 40, prompting Tigerlily to sell over five million copies in the U.S. alone. It was followed in 1998 by Ophelia, another platinum-selling effort that was supported by Merchant's inclusion in the second Lilith Fair tour. Live in Concert, recorded at New York's Neil Simon Theatre, appeared a year later. A prominent social activist, Merchant also drew notice by campaigning in the name of such hot-button issues as animal rights, domestic violence, and homelessness. Merchant launched a folk tour in 2000, with members of progressive folk band the Horse Flies joining her on the road. She then returned to her solo career with Motherland. Two years later, Merchant left Elektra's roster and formed her own independent label, Myth America, in order to issue House Carpenter's Daughter, a collection of traditional and contemporary folk music inspired by the 2000 tour. A long period of silence followed, during which a pair of greatest-hits releases -- the 10,000 Maniacs collection Campfire Songs and Merchant's own Retrospective: 1995-2005 -- kept fans relatively sated. As the decade drew to a close, though, Merchant signed with Nonesuch Records and began making plans for a new album, which eventually arrived in the form of the ambitious, double-disc neo-children's album, 2010's Leave Your Sleep. In 2013 she spearheaded the making of the protest concert film Dear Governor Cuomo with New Yorkers Against Fracking, which included actors Mark Ruffalo and Melissa Leo, and filmmakers Jon Bowermaster and Alex Gibney. A year later, she directed and produced Shelter: A Concert Film to Benefit Victims of Domestic Violence and returned to straight-ahead pop music making with a self-titled album. Over the next year, Merchant revisited the songs from Tigerlily (which sold over five million copies), rearranging and re-recording the material to reflect how it had evolved over two decades of performance. She also created a documentary about the original album's influence on friends, fans, and fellow musicians. In the fall of 2015, Nonesuch released the package as Paradise Is There: The New Tigerlily Recordings. ~ Jason Ankeny & Andrew Leahey
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Stations Featuring
Natalie Merchant

    Female Focus

    Female Focus
    15 songs

    Coffeehouse Corner

    Coffeehouse Corner
    2 songs


    8 songs

    Adult Alternative

    Adult Alternative
    2 songs

    Adult Rock

    2 songs

    Lite Hits

    2 songs

    Late Night Mix

    1 song

    '90s Alternative

    1 song

Albums by
Natalie Merchant

Top Songs by
Natalie Merchant

  1.   Song
  2.   Wonder
  3.   Carnival
  4.   Kind & Generous
  5.   Jealousy
  6.   My Skin
  7.   San Andreas Fault
  8.   River
  9.   The Letter
  10.   After the Gold Rush
  11.   Motherland
  12.   Space Oddity
  13.   King of May
  14.   If No One Ever Marries Me
  15.   Build a Levee
  16.   The Living
  17.   Not in This Life
  18.   Nursery Rhyme of Innocence and Experience
  19.   Frozen Charlotte
  20.   Owensboro
  21.   Calico Pie
  22.   Vain and Careless
  23.   This House Is on Fire
  24.   Adventures of Isabel
  25.   Ladybird
  26.   The Sleepy Giant
  27.   Topsyturvey-World
  28.   Children Go Where I Send Thee
  29.   Seven Years
  30.   Photograph
  31.   Life Is Sweet
  32.   Birds and Ships
  33.   Cowboy Romance
  34.   Thick as Thieves
  35.   I May Know the Word
  36.   Bleezer's Ice-Cream
  37.   Just Can't Last
  38.   Gun Shy
  39.   Dust Bowl
  40.   Break Your Heart
  41.   One Fine Day
  42.   Where I Go
  43.   The Land of Nod
  44.   Crying, My Little One
  45.   The King of China's Daughter
  46.   Beloved Wife
  47.   The End
  48.   Lulu (Introduction)
  49.   It's A-Coming
  50.   Black Sheep
  51.   Giving Up Everything
  52.   Go Down Moses
  53.   Texas
  54.   Maggie Said
  55.   Learning the Game
  56.   The Walloping Window Blind
  57.   The Peppery Man
  58.   The Man in the Wilderness
  59.   The Janitor's Boy
  60.   The Dancing Bear
  61.   The Blind Men and the Elephant
  62.   Sweet and a Lullaby
  63.   Spring and Fall: To a Young Child
  64.   Maggie and Milly and Molly and May
  65.   It Makes a Change
  66.   Indian Names
  67.   I Saw a Ship A-Sailing
  68.   Equestrienne by Meridian Arts Ensemble
  69.   There Is No Good Reason
  70.   Because I Could Not Stop for Death
  71.   Bread & Circuses
  72.   She Devil
  73.   Which Side Are You On?
  74.   Sally Ann
  75.   The Worst Thing
  76.   Golden Boy
  77.   Put the Law on You
  78.   Saint Judas
  79.   Tell Yourself
  80.   The Gulf of Araby
  81.   But Not for Me
  82.   When They Ring the Golden Bells
  83.   Ophelia
  84.   I Know How to Do It
  85.   Seven Deadly Sins
  86.   Griselda
  87.   Autumn Lullaby
  88.   Come Take a Trip in My Airship
  89.   Party of God
  90.   Henry Darger
  91.   I'm Not Gonna Beg
  92.   Effigy