Three years ago, Dominique Pruitt made a cannonball splash with her Nancy Sinatra shaker “High in the Valley.” The singer-songwriter now returns with a grand gesture in the form of her teary-eyed “Even My Roses are Blue,” co-written with her father and legacy act Larry “L.A.” Brown (The Association, Smothers Brothers). My heart’s in a million pieces, she laments over golden horn blasts.
When you were in my life, I thought I had it all / I really had no clue, she confides, tugging the listener ever closer. Just how many tears could fall / I thought you were someone else / But in the end I found out who.
“Inspiration can strike any place. Pretty sure I saw dyed blue roses at the market and thought of the title,” Pruitt tells American Songwriter, with a laugh. “But really, when you’re breaking up, it feels like the whole world is tinged with a somber hue. I thought, ‘If your whole world is so blue with sadness and heartache, that even the roses are blue.’ This song came from an urge to write something very retro at that moment.”
Drawing upon such influences as the Everly Brothers, Ricky Nelson, and Roy Orbison, Pruitt took leaps and bounds in following her playful retro muse─and her father “has always been more than happy to oblige and lean into my retro tendencies when we write together,” she shares. “We wrote this in my parent’s kitchen in just a couple of hours. It’s always exciting when it all just comes together so quickly. And as I’m sure many will catch, the bridge is a line-by-line combo of references of other famous heartbreak songs.”
I’m singing only the lonely / I’m so lonesome I could cry / If only someone had told me, I wouldn’t have wasted so much time, she sings, turning up references to Orbison, Buddy Holly, Hank Williams, Bettye LaVette, and Ben E. King. I wanted you to stand by me boy / But now it’s your turn to cry / You wish I’d beg you to stay now / That’ll be the day I die.
“Actually, for a while during this time, I was heart set on making an entirely super true to form retro record,” she adds, “but as I continued to write from there, I naturally just branched out in different directions. You just gotta let it flow, baby!”
“Even My Roses are Blue” follows “Praying for Rain,” the title cut to Pruitt’s forthcoming new EP, produced and co-written by Joseph Holiday. The record will be released July 2 and features the budding songwriter further exploring spaghetti western music, as well as surf rock and rockabilly. “We recorded the very first take of ‘Praying For Rain’ the day after the 2016 election with a different producer,” Pruitt says. “The materialization of our collective sorrows definitely showed on the track, and not in a good way. We recut it with Joseph at the helm and breathed an entire new life into it. It finally became the spaghetti western murder ballad I had fantasized about.”
The delicious murder ballad anchors the must-hear five-track collection, a demonstration that she is certainly not standing in the shadow of her father (or her mother Anne-Marie Brown, who once sang for The Babys and Jon Waite). Instead, Pruitt leaves such permanent mark of her very own that her future as a pillar in the Americana scene is eminent. Her wonderfully vintage aesthetic, jumping off such touch points as Patsy Cline and films like “Gypsy” and “Cry-Baby,” is as mesmerizing as her songwriting style.
Listen to “Even My Roses are Blue” below.