Maria Kelley Productions

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© 2006 OSD
8 pm, Sunday February 19, 2006
Craterian Ginger Rogers Theater,
Medford, Oregon
opening act Tim Easton, solo acousti

Lucinda Williams' music has been called infectiously captivating. Her recordings consist of eclectic, heartstring-pulling gems that command attention simply because they defy categorization. They are equal parts blues, folk, country and rock anchored by deeply poetic lyrics that cut right to the chase in conveying the full spectrum of the human experience and the emotions associated with it - from heartbreak, loss, betrayal and anger to desire, exhilaration and redemption.

The oldest child of celebrated poet Miller Williams, Lucinda recorded two acclaimed records for Smithsonian/Folkways before hitting her stride in 1988 with her self-titled debut for the Rough Trade label. Artists and music industry leaders took note of her songwriting prowess, and within a short time country artists Patty Loveless' and Mary-Chapin Carpenter’s versions of the album's "The Night's Too Long" and "Passionate Kisses," respectively, shot right to the top of the country charts, with the latter tune garnering Lucinda a Grammy Award in 1992.

That same year, Lucinda released Sweet Old World, which garnered much critical acclaim and squarely placed her at the forefront of the burgeoning Americana music scene. Then in 1998 the floodgates opened with the release of the stunning, Grammy Award winning Car Wheels on a Gravel Road. That was followed in 2000 with the laid-back, sensually dripping Essence - an album that prompted Time magazine to name Lucinda as "America's Best Songwriter." Her latest recording is the genre-crossing World Without Tears.

“Each song has a different flavor, and reflects some of my influences,” Lucinda says of World Without Tears. What’s apparent is the record reflects an interesting mix of many styles. This is what makes World Without Tears so special. She synthesizes various musical elements and then creates something that? so completely original. With this recording, Lucinda Williams has definitely captured the spirit of artistic vibrancy.

In addressing the recording process of World Without Tears, Lucinda enlisted the services of Mark Howard, who's also gone behind the boards for Bob Dylan and U2. As he's done with other artists he's recorded, Mark convinced Lucinda that going for a live approach would lend the material more of a warm, intimate touch. “Everything was so spontaneous and emotional," Lucinda points out. "He recorded the way a live band would record.” That crackerjack band consists of: Doug Pettibone on guitar; Jim Christie on drums, percussion and keyboards; and Taras Prodaniuk on bass.