Artist: Brett Harris
From: Durham, N.C.
Online: Artist website; official SXSW page
SXSW showcase: TBA
About the artist
Though this is his first year as an official SXSW showcasing act, North Carolina pop singer-songwriter Brett Harris has been here several times before, thanks largely to his association with noted producer Chris Stamey’s Big Star tribute band. Stamey helped Harris record his 2010 debut full-length “Man of Few Words,” an impressive collection that highlighted both the sweet clarity of Harris’ vocals and his instinctive talent for crafting instantly appealing tunes with lyrics that dig well below the surface. (See the video above for an acoustic version of the track “Unspoken,” recorded last year at SXSW by American-Statesman videographer Kelly West.)
Renowned for his solo vocal turn on Alex Chilton’s mesmerizing “Kangaroo” at the Big Star tribute shows (which have taken him all over the country and to Europe and Australia), he included a live take on his new EP “Mr. Sunshine.” The standout, though, is the majestic, string-accented original “Out of the Blue,” which suggests Harris is ready to break through with an ambitious full album he has in the can.
Could share a bill with: Josh Ritter, Sam Phillips, Wild Child, John Fullbright.