The singer, who is equal parts Miranda Lambert and Wanda Jackson, with dashes of Dolly Parton and Johnny Cash in the mix, also flirts with bluegrass and jazz. Attesting to her wide appeal, she has opened shows for Kevin Costner and Modern West, sung back up for the Killers' Brandon Flowers and toured with British pop band Keane. But in addition to her distinctive voice, Lindi is also known for the pair of cherry red boots (purchased in Nashville) that have become such a trademark for her they also inspired the title track of her album, 'Little Red Boots,' which is out this week.
While Lindi confesses she writes most of her material from a personal perspective, one tune on 'Little Red Boots,' called 'Jimmy Dean,' was inspired by late screen legend James Dean -- and not a certain Country Music Hall of Fame member.
"I wanted to tackle writing a song from a completely different angle," Lindi tells LAist. "I got inspired after reading James Dean's biography, so I wrote a song from the perspective of his ghost. What's really funny with that song is that some people think I'm talking about the sausage guy. When you listen to the song, you realize it's James Dean, but it's amusing to me that some people assume I have a fetish for Jimmy Dean sausages."
The Canadian (of Mexican-Irish descent) may not have a sausage fetish but she does have a fondness for tattoos. She currently sports five of them, in fact, including a phoenix on one wrist and the lyrics of one of her favorite Leonard Cohen songs, 'Bird on a Wire,' on the other. She's also got a real live bird -- a Green-cheeked Conure. (No word on whether the bird has its own pair of little red boots.)
Lindi Ortega's 'Little Red Boots' is available now and the singer is currently on tour in the U.S. and Canada.