A legendary performer and songwriter, Lauderdale has released 23 albums and is featured in a 2013 documentary, whose title is drawn from one of his hit singles- (for someone else)- “King of Broken Hearts.” He has had a career that defies tradition. He’s worked with the legendary Ralph Stanley, and the equally legendary Elvis Costello- co-written songs with Robert Hunter of the Grateful Dead, Costello, John Leventhal, John Oates... in fact, his songs are so unique and distinctive, they’re known in the music business as ‘Lauderdales.’ He’s toured with Costello, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Stanley, Lucinda Williams and Hot Tuna. Oddly, ‘traditional’ success- defined by a major label contract, and the trappings of superstardom, elude him. In many ways, the trajectory of his eclectic career is a result of a different kind of success- the deep and abiding respect of his peers, and a committed fan base.
“It was a pretty interesting time. Urban Cowboy had just come out, and all of a sudden, New Yorkers were wearing cowboy hats and pointy-toed boots, and country bars started opening up in the New York, New Jersey and Connecticut area. I started playing a lot; I met Buddy Miller back then, in New York, and we’ve been solid since then. New York City was a music center, even for country- there were some great players and writers that added to the folk and rock scene going on back there. And there were so many country ex-pats living in New York who loved bluegrass and country. Probably has something to do with appreciating the things from back home when you’re not around them even more than you do back home.”
Long a fan of the country rock icon Gram Parsons, Lauderdale admits that was part of the allure in moving to LA.