I saw her several times, and the first time I did I fell in love.
- 47 posts total
- 47 posts total
One thing I neglected to mention is the sense of humor Iris is in possession of---revealed in her live show, often of a self-deprecating nature.
When she opens her mouth, the music just pours out, effortlessly. I've never seen or heard anything like it, and I've seen a lot of greats live. And then there is her songwriting: in her genre, as good as it gets.
The Way I Should is another fine record, esp, Wasteland of the Free, I'll Take my Sorrow Straight, and the sly duet with Delbert McClinton, Trouble.
I wonder if she really is underappreciated compared to other excellent female performers in the americana neighborhood who are not Emmylou-famous, like Shannon McNally, Elizabeth Cook, and Kelly Willis.
Although I like Dement, I do find myself listening to these others more, and I recommend them to fans of ID.
@jdoris: "Wasteland Of The Free" is fantastic! Iris received a lot of backlash for that blistering critique of the Neo-Cons pushing the Iraq war, and for painting the Conservative movement itself as hypocritical. That cost her some listeners amongst Evangelicals, who form(ed) a considerable portion of her audience (her lyrics deal with a lot of faith-related issues). At the second of her Troubadour shows I attended, the audience consisted of a large contingent of parents and their children, who sat reverentially through her entire set, not making a sound (except for enthusiastic applause at the end of each song). The "quietest" show I’ve ever attended!
Another under-acknowledged female singer-songwriter coming from a faith-based perspective is the wonderful Julie Miller, wife and musical partner of Buddy Miller---Emmylou Harris’ guitarist/harmony singer/bandleader. Buddy is also a fantastic solo artist and producer, running a recording studio out of the front parlor of he and Julie’s Nashville home. When Julie isn’t feeling well (she is somewhat "sickly"), Buddy runs a mic cable up the stairs and into their bedroom, recording Julie in bed. ;-)
A singer with a vocal style similar to Julie’s is Australian Kasey Chambers. Lots of good albums, including one she did with a real fine young artist some of you may be familiar with---Shane Nicholson. Love it! Kasey was raised in the Australian outback, her mother and father uprooting the family from the city and heading out in the wilderness. Papa Chambers spend the day hunting for food, and after dinner he taught the kids Hank Williams songs as they sat around a campfire. Kasey's first recordings were made as part of the family band---The Dead Ringer Band, and after she got her own record deal her father and brother played in her band! For you more shallow guys, Kasey is also pretty damn hot. ;-)
Heading across the tracks to Bluestown, who has heard Lou Ann Barton? A fantastic singer who came out of the Austin scene, originally the singer in a band whose guitarist was.....Stevie Ray Vaughan. Lou Ann’s excellent debut album was produced by the great Jerry Wexler (producer of Aretha’s Atlantic albums, Dylan’s trio of Christian albums, and lots, lots more). One of my all-time favorite albums! Lou Ann often tours as part of Jimmie Vaughan’s great road band.
There are a lot of artists bubbling below the surface, playing to either a cult-level or slightly larger audience. A lot of old guys I grew up with are living in the past, man. ;-) There is a LOT of great music being made, you just have to look for it.