Parker Millsap’s fervent mix of gospel, blues and folk music

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Photo by Samantha Lamb
Photo by Samantha Lamb

Oklahoma native, singer-songwriter Parker Millsap, was brought up in the Pentecostal church, which he’s since departed, which explains why the 20-year-old’s self-titled debut is laced with religious-themed parables, character-driven narratives and relationship tales with the fire-and-brimstone fervor of a preacher. Along with his band – Michael Rose on bass and fiddle-player Daniel Foulks – Millsap is seeking high praise for songs that balance between gospel, blues and folk.

Below, download “Truck Stop Gospel,” via NPR Music’s Heavy Rotation. Writing about the song, Folk Alley’s Kim Ruehl says:

His self-titled debut doesn’t dally in navel-gazing observations, but unpacks the complex symbiosis between faith, fear, desperation and repentance. In “Truck Stop Gospel,” his narration is so astute it’s impossible to tell what side he’s on — not that it matters. After all, the task of a great song is to hold a mirror to humanity; what it all means is in the eye of the beholder.

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