April 4, 1999 |
It's axiomatic in the music business that for every overnight success story, there are at least a dozen hard-luck tales involving missed opportunities, botched deals and just plain bad timing. And talent doesn't always win out; even the most gifted artists can encounter resistance on the road toward mainstream acceptance. Just ask Kelly Willis. Ten years ago, Willis seemed poised for stardom.
August 22, 1993 |
* * 1/2 Kelly Willis, "Kelly Willis," MCA. Willis wears her heart on her sleeve in her third album. The songs, three of which she co-wrote, are refreshingly free of country's all-too-common coyness. If her laconic delivery occasionally leaves an emotion unplumbed, it's preferable to vocal overkill, and is at least partially balanced by the spunk of her up-tempo, neo-rockabilly numbers.
March 6, 1999 |
*** / Kelly Willis, "What I Deserve," Rykodisc. After a five-year hiatus from full-length albums, the Austin resident reaffirms her status as one of alt-country's best and most versatile singers. Working with spare, clean arrangements that are as inviting and comfortable as your grandmother's old couch, Willis uses her shimmering voice to wrest every last drop of aching melancholy from material by writers as disparate as Paul Westerberg, Paul Kelly and Nick Drake.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 17, 1994 |
The 1994 California CountryFest & Rodeo starts Friday and runs through Sunday. The event, at Buchheim Field, will feature a professionally sanctioned rodeo, two stages of continuous live music, food and merchandise. Among the two dozen national and regional country music performers scheduled to appear are Doug Stone, Rick Trevino, Lari White, Kelly Willis and Lacy J. Dalton. Last year, the festival drew more than 15,000 people, according to organizers.
November 3, 2009 |
Dave Alvin, Peter Case, Stan Ridgway and other members of the Southern California roots music community will play Sunday at McCabe's in Santa Monica in a memorial concert for Austin-bred, L.A.-based musician Amy Farris, who died Sept. 29 at age 40. A multi-instrumentalist accomplished on several instruments in the violin family, Farris had most recently been on tour as a member of Alvin's Guilty Women band. In Texas she had played alongside country veteran Ray Price as well as Kelly Willis, Alejandro Escovedo, Bruce and Charlie Robison and many others.
August 22, 2002
* Mana, "Revolucion de Amor," Warner Bros. International. You have to admire a band--a Mexican one especially--that uses revolutionary slogans as lyrics and still sells millions. Mana sings about racism, pollution and violence, and makes it sound fun.