One True Vine

Album: One True Vine (2013)


  • This is the title track of Mavis Staples' 13th studio album, the second on which she collaborated with record producer and Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy. The album was recorded at the Wilco Loft in Chicago, the city where Mavis was born and where she began singing with her family in 1950 at the age of 11.
  • Tweedy played every instrument on One True Vine except drums, which were helmed by his 17-year-old son, Spencer.
  • Mavis Staples continues to mature like a fine wine, and shortly before turning 74, she achieved her highest charting solo album on the Billboard 200 when One True Vine debuted at #67.
  • This is one of three tracks on One True Vine that was penned by Tweedy. Staples recalled to The regarding this song: "'One True Vine'… I said 'Tweedy, how do you write these songs? How do these lyrics come to you?' I tell you, it's just awesome. You can't just jump on a Jeff Tweedy song and start singing, you have to look at it and figure out what he's talking about. But I don't want to ask him what he's talking about, I want to figure it out myself."
  • The song title is a reference to Jesus' statement in the Gospel of John 15 v 1 where God's Son compares himself to a grapevine and his Father to the gardener. Christ went on to explain that the vine's branches are his followers, some of which, by their living union with him produce much fruit. However, Jesus warns that the Divine Gardener will cut out the shoots who turn back from following Him and produce little fruit. The discarded branches will wither away, be thrown into the fire and burned.


Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

The End Of The Rock Era

The End Of The Rock EraSong Writing

There are no more rock stars - the last one died in 1994.

Dar Williams

Dar WilliamsSongwriter Interviews

A popular contemporary folk singer, Williams still remembers the sticky note that changed her life in college.

70s Music Quiz 1

70s Music Quiz 1Music Quiz

The '70s gave us Muppets, disco and Van Halen, all which show up in this groovy quiz.

James Bond Theme Songs

James Bond Theme SongsMusic Quiz

How well do you know the 007 theme songs?

Country Song Titles

Country Song TitlesFact or Fiction

Country songs with titles so bizarre they can't possibly be real... or can they?

Mike Love of The Beach Boys

Mike Love of The Beach BoysSongwriter Interviews

The lead singer/lyricist of The Beach Boys talks about coming up with the words for "Good Vibrations," "Fun, Fun, Fun," "Kokomo" and other classic songs.