Adia Victoria’s ‘You Was Born to Die’ Is ‘Simultaneously Reinventing and Preserving the Blues’


It’s “coming in hot,” Adia Victoria told us, and she wasn’t kidding. 

Victoria was talking about her song and video “You Was Born to Die,” which dropped last night at midnight. It’s the latest song from her new album A Southern Gothic (release date Sept. 17).

Simmering with emotion and spiked with Southern blues, “You Was Born to Die” is a cover of a 1933 song by Curley Weaver and Blind Willie McTell.

The track also features some stellar guests – Kyshona and Margo Price on vocals, plus Jason Isbell on guitar. “I asked Kyshona and Margo Price to join me in the blueswoman work of singing herself beyond the regard of their men. I invited Jason Isbell to join us in these blues because he make a guitar talk like it can speak to the devil,” Victoria said.

And Price had some choice words for Victoria, describing her as “simultaneously reinventing and preserving the blues.” 

“‘You Was Born To Die’ is a celebration of the impermanence of any imprint we hope in vain to leave on this world. Like any blues worth the name, it is an invitation to stand apart and stare askew back on a world become ridiculous,” Victoria said in a statement.

The song was produced by Mason Hickman and T-Bone Burnett (look for his cameo in the video, above). It follows “Magnolia Blues,” the first single from A Southern Gothic that we’ve been spinning regularly. 

A Southern Gothic is set for release Sept. 17. Below is the cover, which Victoria says “is literally just five year old me in spartanburg sc tryna look sophisticated for my grandma,” who shot the photo.