Weekly Wire

July 14 - July 21, 1997


Sour Apple?
Fiona Apple isn't much of a happy camper -- no, really -- but her debut album is still, one year later, simply amazing. [2]
Bill Frost

Upon this Rock
Local Christian musicians play for the Lord -- and huge crowds. [3]
Charles Brown

Love And Survival
How the tribute album for Rainer Ptacek came to be. [4]
Gil Kauffman

My Crush on The Nields
The Nields; Wednesday, May 28; Santa Fe Music Hall. [5]
Julie Birnbaum

Soldiering On
Erykah Badu represents the best of a new pop-music trend toward the classic soul sound. [6]
Singer takes soul into the next millennium

On Fire
Barbara Manning has always played with fire; on her latest record, she brings her burning fascination to the fore.[7]
Bill Friskics-Warren

The Dragon & the Tiger
Welcome to the shadow world of Glorium, a band shrouded in enough mystery to give Raymond Chandler writer's cramp. [8]
Christopher Gray

Review: Eclipse
Glorium's Eclipse, reviewed by Greg Beets. [9]
Greg Beets

A Marriage of Talent
Patty Stevenson and Craig Siemsen are musical partners for life. [10]
Michael Henningsen

The Muffs are coming to Austin's Liberty Lunch on Saturday, July 12. [11]
Tim Stegall

Texas Platters
Reviews of new releases by Mike Nicolai, Pat MacDonald, Toni Price, and a couple dozen other Lone Star musicians. [12]

Tiny Tunes
Bill White and Neil Young. [13]
Michael Henningsen

Rhythm & Views
Belle and Sebastian, Lunar Drive, Boney James. [14]

Eye On The Scene
Local music news from Knoxville, Tennessee. [15]
Zippy McDuff

Now What?
A Web link page chock full of resources, recommendations, and staff picks pertaining to the subject of this section. [16]

T he amount of sheer personality that can be found among musical artists is staggering. Just look at the Weekly Wire music section that glimmers before your electron-soaked eyes. It contains enough personality to fill Michael Jackson's closet, Meat Loaf's pantry, and the trunks of every one of Elvis's Cadillacs -- and that's after the old peanut-butter-and-bacon sandwiches are removed.

What's with Fiona Apple? The 18-year-old former Manhattanite never smiles, hates her fame, and hangs out with Marilyn Manson and Howard Stern. Talk about depression. But according to this account, the woman can sing, so more sour power to her. On the other side of the personality lollipop, quite a few Christian acts are upbeat these days thanks to their estimated $538 million in annual record sales. An article explains the musicians' belief that success has arrived because "God wants to be more popular than Mick Jagger." Uh-huh. (Can you imagine the lips?)

Some personalities are in transformation. Since surviving a brain tumor, guitarist Rainer Ptacek has more gratitude, peace and joie de vivre than ever before -- and he's more social, too, if his new tribute album is any indication. (With friends like PJ Harvey and Robert Plant, who needs other friends?) The Nields, an underrated Massachusetts band, recently learned the art of self-promotion, causing this fan to equate their new attitude with a great big zit. Oooh.

I could go on, mapping out personality in Erykah Badu's classic, Billie Holiday-inspired soul crooning; Barbara Manning's scorching new solo LP; Austin quintet Glorium's self-effacing rock purity; the amp-destroying shenanigans of the Muffs; or Patty Stevenson and Craig Siemsen's allegedly perfect musical and real-life marriage. But I can't, because I've got to tell you about our album reviews, which include evaluations of 23 Texas albums in a row, plus Bill White Acre, Neil Young and Crazy Horse, Belle and Sebastian, and the Tennessee Kingsnakes, to name a few. Is it just me, or does the personality quotient here boggle the ears?

Talk Back
If anything in this section offends, annoys or perturbs your senses, here's your place to scream like an angry punk rocker.

From The Vaults

Bold Fusion
Pianist Steve Barta Blends Classical and Jazz. [06-06-97]
Michael Henningsen

The Best of Luck
A look at Joy Lynn White, a country singer who's making quality music with no help from the Music Row establishment. [06-13-97]
Michael McCall

Back In Blues
Tucson's favorite singer/songwriter beats brain cancer and returns to the stage. [06-06-97]
Jonathan Holden

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