Almanac Music: ‘Our Town’ – Iris DeMent

I’m a huge fan of Iris DeMent, and I have been ever I since I first saw her at Bluesfest in Byron Bay twenty or so years ago, and I can never get enough of her music.


I posted a piece about Iris a couple of years ago on the site, and recently I came across this clip of her performing live probably one of her best known songs, ‘Our Town’.


The performance is from  a 1994 BBC weekly television show called ‘Transatlantic Sessions’ and featured some of the world’s great music talent performing a series of concerts set in a homey environment. This session also features Emmy Lou Harris on supporting vocals and  great musos such as Jerry Douglas providing the musical accompaniment.




More from Col Ritchie can be read Here.


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About Colin Ritchie

Retired teacher who enjoys following the Bombers, listening to music especially Bob Dylan, reading, and swimming.


  1. Daryl Schramm says

    I am also attracted to her hauntingly mournful sound. Don’t know why. It was Trans Atlantic sessions #3 that I first saw this.. She does Let The Mystery Be on the first one. I went through the whole 3+ hours last week. Brilliant concept and music.

  2. Peter Crossing says

    You keep doing it Col.
    Iris Dement is a wonderful artist. Great voice and she produces thoughtful compositions. Our Town is a perfect example.
    She has done some terrific duets – with John Prine (In Spite of Ourselves) and Delbert McClinton (Trouble). And, of course with Steve Earle (I’m Still In Love With You) on his brilliant album The Mountain where her voice soars and the mandolin and dobro of the Del McCoury Band add superb touches.
    Best of all, for me, is Living In The Wasteland of the Free from her excellent album The Way I Should. The biting lyrics of the song are as incisive and relevant now as when she wrote them some twenty five years ago – maybe more so.

  3. Tony Forbes says

    I remember it well Col, Iris had her own loyal fan club at Byron Bay and we were very quickly converted!

  4. Keiran Croker says

    Great song. She’s a great songwriter. I’ve long been a fan.

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