Skip Navigation Website Accessibility



Darrell Scott - Friend of the DFC

Darrell Scott is one of Nashville’s premiere session musicians and has lived there since 1995. Not only does he sing and write songs, he’s also a multi-instrumentalist that plays guitar, mandolin, pedal, lap steel, banjo and accordion.

During his career, Darrell has collaborated with the likes of Steve Earle, Sam Bush, Emmylou Harris, Tim O’Brien and others. Among his many accolades is winning the 2007 Song of the Year award from the Americana Music Association for his song "Hank William's Ghost” which appears on his album The Invisible Man released in 2006. In 2010, he was part of the Band of Joy, alongside Led Zeppelin frontman, Robert Plant. And his songs have been covered by musicians, such as: The Dixie Chicks, Beyoncé, Faith Hill, Travis Tritt, Brad Paisley – and have been featured on the TV show “Justified”. 

It All Began at Home
Growing up, Darrell’s family was very musical. His father (musician Wayne Scott) had him smitten with guitars by the age of four, alongside his brother, Denny, who also played guitar. His parents mostly played country music in the house and car, so he was listening to musicians like Johnny Cash and Hank Williams. “Playing music was our family thing to do. Music was all around my house. Some families go bowling or fishing, we played music together. We did it as a unit.” 

jaroso Darrell scott albumJaroso
His latest album, Jaroso, was released in October 2020. The story behind the album and cover is just as interesting as the music. “A friend of mine, Mark Dudreau, bought the adobe church (on the album cover), restored it and turned it back into a beautiful spot. He thought it would be the perfect place for music and concerts. So, we set up a concert time about a week ahead. People from Taos and that general area learned about it by word of mouth and just showed up.

“I thought instead of just doing a show there, we could record an album with no PA system. PAs are not meant to sound great - they’re meant to make the folks onstage louder. For a little adobe church in Jaroso, Colorado, we didn’t need that. We recorded simply and it was very intimate. There were about fifty folks at our concert and they were quiet, but you can hear people moving about. It makes the recording more charming and makes you feel like you’re there, which is what we were looking for.”

In essence, they were making an old folk record. “Early folk music had a tradition of having field recordings, where you take equipment out to wherever the person making the music is - the front porch, a jail, a hotel room - and you just record them wherever they are.” 

Gordon Lightfoot was a strong influence for Darrell because of his songwriting. “I started writing songs when I was 12 years old, and I wrote like a 12-year-old would write in a journal - they wouldn’t want someone to grab their journal and read it out loud. That’s kind of how I treat it right now. I think the writing process is a private thing and it doesn’t need to have an audience until the writer is ready.”

Darrell’s songwriting is spontaneous. “I like writing songs when the inspiration is there. It’s a high moment. It happens mostly when I’m moved to stop whatever I’m doing and pay attention. The only problem with that is I have to be prepared to not write for as long as it takes to be inspired. I’ve written two songs in a day and have also gone a year or two without writing one.” 

When he’s not writing or performing, Darrell listens to a wide variety of music. He has “a bunch of 78s (probably 800+) and my tastes can run from folk to bluegrass to early blues, early rockabilly, stuff like that. I like to listen to things that aren’t in the world I work in - maybe classical, jazz, world music, instrumental music, and different songs pop through. I have Apple music with thousands of albums. I sometimes get random suggestions, so I’ve got diverse radio stations.”

camper van Darrell scott dog millerOn the Road Again
This is Darrell’s second year of travel since the beginning of the pandemic. “The pandemic basically took away a musician’s livelihood. The contrast is you couldn’t get your fellow Americans to put on their face masks, so a musician could lose a year and a half of work. As soon as we could work, we were working! We worked very hard touring June through December 2021. And we’re out again this year.”

And touring is a family affair for Darrell. “We travel in a truck with a camper in the bed. I travel with my wife, Angela, and our dog, Miller. We stay at national and state parks, Walmart parking lots, rivers, lakes. We’re kind of working tourists.” 

When you see him on tour, don’t expect to hear the same songs every night. “I don’t have a set list. I go out and make it up every night. The audience, how I feel, what went on in the world that day and the PA have something to do with song choices. I’m kind of an improvisational guy.”

Darrell has even played our local Swallow Hill (around 15 years ago) and says he’s “aware of what the Denver Folklore Center has meant to Denver, through Harry and all the great music that has happened – folk-centric, blues, bluegrass. There’s nothing like it.” 

Darrell and his wife stayed busy during the pandemic downtime. “We live on a big piece of land and built a 1,500-square-foot studio, some outbuildings, and we redid our living room and kitchen using our own wood that we harvested from our property.” Darrell also put out two albums during that time - Darrell Scott Sings the Blues of Hank Williams and Jaroso. 

When he’s not on the road, Darrell enjoys being at his farm. “It’s nice to walk around the land and dream about what we’re going to do there, like building a shack or a fence for the animals. And I like to cook. I wouldn’t say I’m a chef, but I’m very much a cook.”

Darrell scott trioSee Darrell Scott Live!
You can catch Darrell performing in Colorado this month!
Friday, September 2nd in Hotchkiss - Solo.
Sunday, September 4th at the
Four Corners Folk Festival in Pagosa Springs - Darrell Scott Electrifying Trio.
Monday, September 5th at the Soiled Dove Underground in Denver - Darrell Scott Electrifying Trio.

All tour dates and tickets can be found on his

Also, Darrell is also about to release a “kind of bluegrass string band record”. Look for it soon on his