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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Hal Horowitz
As a backing player and vocalist for Alejandro Escovedo, Kelly Willis, and others, violinist/singer/songwriter Amy Farris has accumulated substantial experience with some of Austin's most accomplished and recognizable names. On her debut solo disc -- produced by roots rocker Dave Alvin -- Farris proves that she is every bit as talented as those she's played with. Boasting a sensitive but strong voice that merges bits of Patsy Cline, Maria Muldaur, Nanci Griffith, Dolly Parton, and Willis, Farris combines earthy country, folk, swing, and pop to produce an intriguing and thoroughly enjoyable Americana mix. An unusual but striking cover of Scott Walker's "Big Louise" shows ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Hal Horowitz
As a backing player and vocalist for Alejandro Escovedo, Kelly Willis, and others, violinist/singer/songwriter Amy Farris has accumulated substantial experience with some of Austin's most accomplished and recognizable names. On her debut solo disc -- produced by roots rocker Dave Alvin -- Farris proves that she is every bit as talented as those she's played with. Boasting a sensitive but strong voice that merges bits of Patsy Cline, Maria Muldaur, Nanci Griffith, Dolly Parton, and Willis, Farris combines earthy country, folk, swing, and pop to produce an intriguing and thoroughly enjoyable Americana mix. An unusual but striking cover of Scott Walker's "Big Louise" shows that her influences run deeper than the typical strummy Austin fare, and her violin and viola add sadness and a European feel to much of this music. Supported by a terrific band led by Alvin and his associates, Farris is allowed plenty of room to explore her '50s girl group pop roots, mingling them with folk and rock as on the evocative title track. She's just as effective on the pure honky tonk of the Alvin co-write "Pretty Dresses" as on the urging swamp blues with gypsy violin of "My Heart's Too Easy to Break," another Alvin co-write. She gives a jaunty country & western spin to X's "Poor Girl," and even shifts into swinging jazz mode reminiscent of Dan Hicks on "Hard to Say." The disparate genres are joined by Farris' clean, innocent, yet confident vocals that are beautifully captured due in no small part to Alvin's sympathetic production, which never overwhelms her lovely voice. It's a stunning debut that showcases Farris' eclectic influences in a classy and coherent way that plays to her many strengths and shows her to be a vibrant face with a promising future.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/4/2004
  • Label: Yep Roc Records
  • UPC: 634457207127
  • Catalog Number: 2071
  • Sales rank: 386,783

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Amy Farris Primary Artist, Organ, Fiddle, Percussion, Violin, Viola, Vocals
Chris Gaffney Piano
Dave Alvin Electric Guitar, Guitar (Baritone)
Skip Edwards Organ, Piano, Accordion
Bob Glaub Electric Bass, Bass Guitar
Don Heffington Percussion, Drums
Tony Marsico Electric Bass
Rick Shea Acoustic Guitar, Pedal Steel Guitar, Electric Guitar
Skip Heller Guitar
Ben Peeler Acoustic Guitar, Lap Steel Guitar
Brent Harding Double Bass, Upright Bass
David P. Jackson Upright Bass
Jeffery R. Ross Acoustic Guitar
Tony Marisco Bass Guitar
Technical Credits
Dave Alvin Audio Production
Exene Cervenka Composer
John Doe Composer
Scott Walker Composer
Mark Linett Engineer
Bruce Robison Composer
Dan Marcus Composer
Amy Farris Composer
Rob Litowitz Executive Producer
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Mixed bag of pop and Americana with fine high points

    Farris is a singer-songwriter-fiddler from Austin who's augmented her classical training with an impressive crash-course in Americana. After wood-shedding on tour with Alejandro Escovedo, she had the opportunity to tour and record with Austin luminaries like Kelly Willis & Bruce Robison and The Derailers. She's graduated with this debut CD, produced by legendary guitarist-singer-songwriter Dave Alvin. ¶ Farris' voice has a good measure of the "little girl" sound of Julie Miller and Victoria Williams, which can sound twee at times. Alvin does a good job of hiding this, especially on the stellar double-tracked vocal of the title song (augmented by a superb baritone guitar solo) and the twangy "Pretty Dresses." The former brings to mind 60s girlgroup sounds like The Shangri-Las or Shelley Fabares, the latter adds Farris' fiddle and Rick Shea's pedal steel to a song that's equal parts Wanda Jackson and Connie Francis. ¶ The album's eclectic mix includes Drifters-styled bass, maracas and violin on "Let Go" and jazzy crooning on "Undecided" and "No Exit." Farris' voice is a bit girly to fully carry the latter two, but her fiddle solo on "No Exit" is swings in a wonderfully laconic way. Covers include Bruce Robison's "Drivin' All Night Long," Scott Walker's moody "Big Louise," and X's "Poor Girl." The latter, winningly, has more of a wistful jangle than X's typical angst. ¶ The variety that Farris and Alvin bring to this disc is admirable. They hit some fine high points (particularly when casting Farris in a '60s pop and country vein); the lower marks are worthy experiments that should help guide Farris' future application of her unusual voice.

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