Nick Lowe first gained prominence in the British New Wave period of the 1970s, performing with and/or producing Brinsley Schwartz, Rockpile with Dave Edmunds, and Elvis Costello -- who turned Lowe's song "(What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love, and Understanding" into a rock anthem.
Most recently, he has become a wry elder statesman of rock, exemplified by his recent albums At My Age (2007) and The Old Magic (2011), finding sleeper success and re-establishing himself as a lovably misanthropic pop elder statesman.
As Nick said in a Fresh Air interview, "Because of the way I like my records to sound, I will never be a mainstream artist. Whereas some people are delighted by the homemade quality of my records, other people feel kind of nervous. Because they've been trained to hear thoughtless recordings, because most of them are made on computers and they don't have any mistakes on them unless they're really by design."
His new album is Quality Street: A Seasonal Selection for All the Family, which finds him mixing traditional songs with new ones he's written or co-written with Ry Cooder. He'll be bringing some "sleighbell-free" spirit to the Holiday Cheer for FUV benefit concert on December 10th, playing alongside Iron & Wine and Friends.