I honestly don’t know how musician survive in this day and age. I listen to more indie music than anyone I know and I am always surprised how good some of it is. It may not be earth shattering or game changing good but it’s good. Very rarely do I come across an album that I just can’t listen to. The music business has been broken wide open since digital became the rage and I just don’t know how an artist finds an audience these days let alone make any money from their music. I guess most artists have a regional following and as they grow, they can branch out, travel farther, and expand their reach and their fan base. In the end, I guess The Grateful Dead had it right; make your money off touring and view your recordings as a loss leader or an expensive marketing tool.
Kathy Muir is a singer songwriter originally from Scotland and now living in Stamford Connecticut. Her style is reminiscent of some of the great women who have broken through in the past thirty years. Her newest release “Book Cover Judge” was dropped in March of this year and apart from a couple of singles and an EP, this represents only her second full length release. If you are looking for words to describe her sound, think Shawn Colvin, Sheryl Crow, Suzanne Vega and Everything but the Girl. She is bluesy, rootsy, jazzy and folkie all at the same time. Kathy’s song craft is first rate and the production on this record is excellent.
Whenever I hear a new artist, I tend to judge it on one criteria. Would I play it on my syndicated radio show? The answer here is a resounding yes! That’s not to say that if I wouldn’t play it on the show I don’t like it. The aesthetic on the show is more classic rock but I will play anything from 1960 to today as long as it is a well-crafted, well performed song. Kathy Muir’s music is easy to listen to and as I said, very reminiscent of some of the women I mentioned earlier. Track selection order on an album can be crucial and I imagine it was especially difficult on this album because every song is strong. If I had to choose three or four songs that are stand out tracks, I am hard pressed. ‘Soul Lover’ is a sultry Southern charmer, ‘You’re on my Mind’ is a jazzy turn and ‘You and me Both’ is pure pop. All in all, “Book Cover Judge” is a strong release and needs to be exposed to a larger audience.
Uncle Duke; a.k.a. Rob Penland is the producer and host of "The Mad Music Asylum" a 4 hour weekly syndicated radio show and now a 24 hour streaming internet station.