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"Always 20 years ahead of her time."
Lance LeRoy, Manager, Lester Flatt

"Thar's that banjer-pickin' girl!"
Lester Flatt, about Louisa, Martha White Bluegrass Tour 1973

She's been writing songs since she was six and playing and writing professionally for 36 years. She's a pioneer for women in bluegrass and a trailblazer for songwriters. She penned Alison Kraus's breakout hit, Steel Rails, now a standard Bluegrass classic. She's had over 85 songs recorded by her bands and other artists, and is about to break-out with a new CD of originals sung and played by no less than 20 winners of International World of Bluegrass Awards, herself included.

This impressive trail of honors is what made "Louisa Branscomb" a "household word" in bluegrass music as far back as 1972. By then, she had been one of the first woman to lead a touring bluegrass band while performing on banjo (1972), co-founder of one of the first modern all-female bluegrass bands (1971), and the first woman - and one of the first writers - in bluegrass to produce 3 albums of nearly all originals in Bluegrass music before 1978. Her song "Blue Ridge Memories" had made the charts in Japan, her band (Boot Hill) had a number two bluegrass gospel album, and she'd played 200 to 250 gigs a year as a full time musician for nearly a decade.

Now it's 2010, and she's still going strong. Since Boot Hill days, Louisa played banjo with Cherokee Rose, a band that for a time included now-known artists such as Missy Raines and Lynn Morris (1979-1980). She then formed the popular Atlanta band, Born Gypsy, in which she played mandolin and banjo. Subsequently, she played banjo and guitar with the popular GA band, Fontanna Sunset. 2007 found Louisa making a return to her childhood roots in Nashville, Tennessee, where she has accompanied performing artists including "Lorena," Clint Alphin, Pam Gadd, and Becky Schlegel, and where she is establishing a formidable songwriter presence in this mecca of songwriting super-
talents.

Even with this notable 30 year performing career, Louisa is probably best known for her songwriting. She holds the honor of the longest running hit song on Bluegrass charts, the world-wide hit "Steel Rails," recorded by Alison Krauss. "Steel Rails" appeared on Krauss's first Grammy-winning CD, and can now be heard at jam sessions around the world. Critics have attributed this now standard favorite as largely responsible for "bringing an entire new generation of young women into bluegrass music." Steel Rails earned Louisa a second Grammy songwriter appearance on John Denver's last album. Alison's version won SPBGMA song of the year in 1991.

Louisa's accolades continue. In 1991, along with 13 other prestigious women in bluegrass, Louisa shared honors for IBMA Recorded Event of the Year for Mark Newton's "Tribute to Women in Bluegrass, Follow Me Back to the Fold." In 2006 Louisa is again part of a group of talented women up for Recorded Event of the Year, with her song, "Fool's Gold," on Lorraine Jordan's production of "Daughter's of Bluegrass: Back to the Well". Other songs have earned her Finalist and semi-finalist awards in the Georgia Musician's industry Songwriting Contests, and selections in
the prestigious IBMA songwriting showcase. Louisa has been a judge for songwriting competitions and was one of the first bluegrass songwriting mentors for IBMA.

Louisa has had over 70 songs recorded in bluegrass by artists including Alison Krauss, Dale Ann Bradley (five cuts), the McPeak Brothers, Broad River, Fontanna Sunset (six cuts), Janet McGarry (two cuts), Valerie Smith and Daughters of Bluegrass.

Louisa passes on her songwriting experiences in mentoring other songwriters in Tennessee, and at her country home and songwriter retreat, Woodsong Farm, in the mountains of North Georgia.

Chris Jones, himself a noted songwriter, announcer, and performer, says of Louisa:
"Louisa's career, both inside and outside of music, has been guided by a powerful creative force. It's a force that has not only brought us a staggering amount of original recorded music, but one that has enabled her to juggle and synthesize her love of music, writing, people, and the mountains around her.