The City Baker’s Guide to Country Living Playlist

MusicComThere is, of course, baking in THE CITY BAKER’S GUIDE TO COUNTRY LIVING, but music plays almost as important a role in the story. My main character Livvy plays the banjo, and one of the ways that she connects to the people of the town of Guthrie is by joining a contra dance band.

Here is a CITY BAKER’S GUIDE playlist

Rodney MillerSheehan’s Reel. Rodney Miller is an incredible fiddle player and fiddle maker from New Hampshire. He plays some of the best contra dance tunes you will ever hear. I modeled my character Martin’s fiddle playing after Mr. Miller’s. He is thrilling to watch.

Fred AstaireNever Gonna Dance. Livvy comes to the McCracken’s to watch Swing Time. This is one of my favorite songs from that film. It’s sweet and silly and romantic.

Victoria WilliamsWhen We Sing Together. This song reminds me of Martin’s family, especially of his parents, Henry and Dotty. There is a feeling in this song that was a seed of what I was trying to capture when I set out to write THE CITY BAKER. Victoria Williams has inspired me so much.

The KnittersLove Shack. X is Livvy’s favorite band, and their country side-project The Knitter embodies Livvy’s love of both punk rock and traditional country music. I picture Livvy doing a drunken karaoke version of this song.

Tim O’BrienWayfaring Stranger. This is one of the many traditional tunes that appear in THE CITY BAKER. Another is:

Gillian WelchI’ll Fly Away. Gillian Welch is one the artists I most admire. She carries the tradition of old time music while making something entirely new. I’ll Fly Away is a tune that Livvy plays with the McCrackens.

Son VoltMystifies Me. This is Martin’s Song for Livvy. I fashioned Martin’s voice after Jay Farrar’s in this song. I must have listened to this song a thousand times when writing.

Uncle TupeloSandusky. This is the song I always picture hearing as the movie credits role.

Author: Louise Miller

Louise Miller is the author of THE CITY BAKER'S GUIDE TO COUNTRY LIVING (Pamela Dorman Books/Viking/August 9, 2016), the story of a commitment-phobic pastry chef who discovers the meaning of belonging while competing in the cut-throat world of Vermont county fair baking contests. Find out more at