Nikki Lane

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Nikki Lane
Nikki Lane Performing with The Texas Gentlemen at Dan's Silverleaf at Oaktopia Festival in Denton, TX.
Background information
Birth nameNicole Lane Frady[1]
Also known asThe Highway Queen
Born (1983-10-17) October 17, 1983 (age 36) Greenville, South Carolina
GenresOutlaw country,[2] Americana
Years active2010-present
LabelsIamsound, New West

Nikki Lane (born October 17, 1983) is an American country music singer-songwriter and artist.[3] She has released three albums: Walk of Shame, All or Nothin', and Highway Queen.

Early life and education[edit]

Lane was born in Greenville, South Carolina,[4] and dropped out of high school there. She then worked as a fashion designer for a time, before moving to Los Angeles in 2006 and later to New York City.[5] After doing so, she broke up with a country musician, who left her to record an album in Alabama;[6] this experience inspired her to begin writing country music songs.[7] Lane, who now lives in Nashville, also owns and operates a clothing store called "High Class Hillbilly".[8]


On September 27, 2011, Lane released her debut album, Walk of Shame, on Iamsound Records.[9] She co-wrote 'Gone, Gone, Gone' with producer Lewis Pesacov of Fool's Gold. Her second album, All or Nothin', was released on New West Records on May 6, 2014.[10] It was produced by Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys,[10] whom she met at a flea market. Auerbach allowed Lane to record the album at his studio, Easy Eye Sound Studio, for free.[11] Lane has said that working with Auerbach in the making of this album was very easy and natural for her.[12] All or Nothin' features a duet between Lane and Auerbach, "Love's on Fire".[13]

Lane's album Highway Queen was released on February 17, 2017. It was recorded near Dallas, TX at The Echo Lab from February to June 2016 with Nikki's boyfriend Jonathan Tyler, as well as the other members of her current touring band. Two music videos were released ahead of the album's release; the title track, Highway Queen, in which Nikki and friends crush cars with a monster truck, and Jackpot, in which Nikki and Jonathan Tyler successfully try their luck in old Sin City, ultimately resulting in a Vegas chapel wedding.

In another video released in August 2017 for the song Send The Sun, Nikki and the band play live on a vintage country television studio set and also perform a two-person dance routine.

Unfortunate circumstances struck Nikki's band around the time of recording Highway Queen, when lead guitarist Alex Munos was sidelined by cancer and started receiving treatment in May 2016. He would later recover and return to the band around the time of Highway Queen's release.

In July 2017 former drummer Ben Eyestone passed away from colon cancer. He had played drums on Nikki Lane's first two albums.

Critical reception[edit]

Lane's sound has been compared to that of Wanda Jackson,[12] as well as the sound of Neko Case's early albums.[9] She has also been referred to as the First Lady of Outlaw Country.[14]

Walk of Shame[edit]

A review of Walk of Shame in Exclaim! stated that Lane has "a petulant, Valley of the Dolls lyrical style" and praised her vocal delivery.[6] Another review of this album was written by Mark Deming, who said that "Lane has confidence to spare and a voice that lives up to her own self-worth" and gave the album 3.5 out of 5 stars. Deming also said that Lane has yet to fully master the art of recording music in a studio.[9]

All or Nothin'[edit]

According to review aggregator Metacritic, All or Nothin' has received generally favorable reviews from critics, with a score of 79 out of 100.[15] Holly Gleason, writing in Paste, awarded it a score of 8.5 out of 10 and said that the album's songs "read like Polaroids from a wild heart gone ragged". Gleason also praised Auerbach's production, which she called "savvy".[16] Lane told Billboard that she was flattered at the positive reception this album had received from the press.[12]


Studio albums[edit]

Title Album details Peak chart positions Sales



Walk of Shame
All or Nothin' 32
Highway Queen
  • Release date: February 17, 2017
  • Label: New West Records
  • Formats: CD, cassette, digital download, vinyl
2 41 14
"—" denotes releases that did not chart


  • Gone, Gone, Gone (2011)


  • "Gone Gone Gone" (2012)
  • "Right Time" (2014)
  • "Highway Queen" (2016)
  • "Jackpot" (2017)
  • "Send The Sun" (2017)

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Association Category Nominated Work Result
2015 Americana Music Association Emerging Artist of the Year Nikki Lane Nominated
2017 Ameripolitan Music Awards Outlaw Country Female Nikki Lane Won


  1. ^ Egner, Jeremy (October 22, 2011). "Five Minutes at CMJ With Nikki Lane". New York Times. Retrieved December 2, 2014.
  2. ^ Newman, Jason (March 5, 2014). "Outlaw Country Singer Nikki Lane Goes 'All or Nothin' on New Album". Rolling Stone. Retrieved December 2, 2014.
  3. ^ Nikki Lane, Andreas Graban,, 4. February 2016 (German)
  4. ^ Maloney, Sean (September 1, 2011). "Nikki Lane: Walking The Line". American Songwriter. Retrieved December 1, 2014.
  5. ^ Terich, Jeff (July 22, 2014). "Nikki Lane Kicks Up Some Dust". American Songwriter. Retrieved December 2, 2014.
  6. ^ a b Beers, Randi (September 27, 2011). "Walk of Shame Review". Exclaim!. Retrieved December 1, 2014.
  7. ^ Leahey, Andrew. "Nikki Lane Biography". AllMusic. Retrieved December 1, 2014.
  8. ^ "Nikki Lane On Mountain Stage". NPR. December 9, 2011. Retrieved December 1, 2014.
  9. ^ a b c Deming, Mark. "Walk of Shame Review". AllMusic. Retrieved December 1, 2014.
  10. ^ a b Thompson, Stephen (April 27, 2014). "First Listen: Nikki Lane, 'All Or Nothin". NPR. Retrieved December 1, 2014.
  11. ^ Danton, Eric R. (September 18, 2014). "Rock Stars Enter the Production Booth". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved December 2, 2014.
  12. ^ a b c Dauphin, Chuck (July 9, 2014). "Nikki Lane Talks 'Vulnerable' New Dan Auerbach-Produced Album 'All or Nothin'". Billboard. Retrieved December 1, 2014.
  13. ^ White, Caitlin (May 6, 2014). "Nikki Lane offers fiery takes on rebellion, surrender, and romance". The AV Club. Retrieved December 1, 2014.
  14. ^ "Nikki Lane: All or Nothin". L.A. RECORD. Retrieved April 26, 2015.
  15. ^ "All Or Nothin'". Metacritic. Retrieved December 1, 2014.
  16. ^ Gleason, Holly (May 6, 2014). "Nikki Lane: All or Nothin' Review". Paste. Retrieved December 1, 2014.
  17. ^ "Nikki Lane - Chart history (Heatseekers Albums)". Billboard.
  18. ^ "Nikki Lane - Top Country Albums". Billboard.
  19. ^ "Nikki Lane - Americana/Folk Albums". Billboard.
  20. ^ Bjorke, Matt (May 10, 2017). "Top 10 Country Albums Chart: May 9, 2017". Roughstock.