Alysse Gafkjen

Video Premiere: Amy McCarley, 'High Wire'

Musicians tend to have fascinating life stories, but Amy McCarley's certainly ranks up there. The Americana singer-songwriter is a former NASA contractor who turned to music full-time later in life. In her upcoming album, MECO, the highly anticipated follow-up to her 2014 album Jet Engines, McCarley continues to explore that transition.

McCarley explains the inspiration behind the album: "MECO traces my experience of what it's been like leaving life as a NASA contractor to pursue a career in music. MECO —an acronym borrowed from the Space Shuttle program that stands for Main Engine Cut Off— marked the point when the vehicle reached an altitude where the force of gravity could keep it orbiting in an effortless free fall. Similarly, my path has been about understanding the importance of working hard while at the same time acknowledging the limits of my will or ability to influence results. It's taught me to be grateful for every opportunity and all the talented people I've had the good fortune to work with on this project. Its taught me to do my best and then let go of the need for the outcome to be a certain way. Of course, that doesn't mean I don't forget and need to relearn all this over and over. I've certainly not graduated from the school of life!"

The Alabama native's rich vocals have earner her comparisons to Lucinda Williams — a fair approximation to me. The song, "High Wire," is a poignant reminder of how important is to reflect and take stock of things. "I wrote it as I was out touring in support of Jet Engines when one day it suddenly occurred to me how the things that used to make me so nervous had begun to seem a part of my every day routine. Performing was starting to feel more normal." On the video, McCarley is joined by producer Kenny Vaughan and Chris Scruggs.

Upcoming Tour Dates for Amy McCarley

June 23 — Allgood Concert Series — Northport, Ala.

July 6 — Maverick Festival — Woodbridge, United Kingdom

July 7 — Maverick Festival — Woodbridge, United Kingdom

Aug. 11 — The Listening Room — Mobile, Ala.

Aug. 18 — Three Caves Concert Series feat. Edwin McCain — Huntsville, Ala.

Nov. 1 — Lizard Lounge — Cambridge, MA

Learn more about Amy McCarley here.

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