OUT THIS WEEK
Kevin Welch, “Dust Devil” (Dead Reckoning). An Okie who relocated to Wimberley many years ago and now spends part of his time in Australia (with a new bride and infant son), Welch has been a left-of-center-country treasure since his self-titled major-label debut came out in 1990. Welch was never a great fit for mainstream Nashville but worked really well around its edges, leading to his partnership with the artist-run Dead Reckoning collective. Some of that crew’s key players return here, including drummer/singer Harry Stinson and electric guitarist Kenny Vaughan, now fixtures in Marty Stuart’s band. Welch’s longtime right-hand-man Fats Kaplin is key here as well, playing fiddle, pedal steel, accordion, banjo and mandolin. It’s all to support a sterling new set of songs from Welch that run the range of the Americana genre, from the bluesy opener “Blue Lonesome” to the sweet piano-and-fiddle-based ballad “The Girl in the Seashell” to the classic country-folk title track. Two non-originals, John Hadley’s “High Heeled Shoes” and Bill Caswell’s “Sweet Allis Chalmers,” both intriguingly find Welch venturing into Tom Waits territory. Playing Nov. 15 at Susanna’s Kitchen in Wimberley. Here’s the video for “Blue Lonesome”:
Kendall Beard, “Here Comes Trouble.” A frequent presence in clubs around town with AJ Vallejo as the duo Love & Chaos, Beard steps out on her own here with 13 tracks featuring Vallejo as producer and multi-instrumentalist. A former “American Idol” semifinalist, Beard brings her powerhouse vocals to original tunes (nine she wrote herself, four with Vallejo) that draw from rock, blues, country and folk, fitting comfortably under the broad Americana umbrella. Playing Nov. 10 at Lamberts. Here’s the video for “Both Feet on the Ground”:
Dirty River Boys, “Mesa Starlight.” Now based in Austin, the raucous roots-rockers from El Paso known for their energetic live shows are back with their first album in four years. The dozen tracks here range suggest a close musical kinship with long-running Texas band Reckless Kelly and perhaps North Carolina’s American Aquarium. Playing Nov. 9 at Buck’s Backyard in Buda. Here’s the video for the track “Mesa”:
Sarah Sharp, “Sway” EP. On her third EP this year (following “Dream” and “Wake”), Sharp serves up six tracks that give a clearer glimpse into what you might hear during her Tuesday happy-hour residency at Austin downtown jazz hub the Elephant Room. The previous EPs concentrated on original material, and two songs here are ones she co-wrote, but the others are covers, including a couple of instantly recognizable tunes. Sharp puts a very distinctive stamp on the Rogers & Hammerstein classic “Oh, What a Beautiful Morning” (from “Oklahoma”), treading softly but swinging sweetly. The arrangement on Cole Porter’s “Every Time We Say Goodbye” is even more minimal, with ace guitarist Mitch Watkins stepping out for a subtle, sublime solo but otherwise laying back to keep all the focus on Sharp’s vocals. And on the standard “Always on My Mind,” her reading is heartbreaking enough that you might just forget the Willie Nelson version. Release show Oct. 23 at Elephant Room. Here’s the opening track:
OCT. 25: Lesly Reynaga, “Dual Passport,” release show Oct. 25 at One-2-One Bar.
OCT. 26: Carson McHone, “Carousel,” playing Nov. 1 at Cactus Cafe.
OCT. 26: Jamie Lin Wilson, “Jumping Over Rocks,” playing Oct. 20 at Sam’s Town Point.
OCT. 26: Floyd Domino’s All-Stars, self-titled, release shows Oct. 26 at Parker Jazz Club and Nov. 6 at Sam’s Town Point.
OCT. 26: Isaac Jacob Band, self-titled (Union 28).
OCT. 30: Craig Marshall, “Turnaround,” release show Oct. 30 at Townsend.
NOV. 9: Reputations, “Electric Power,” release show Nov. 1 at Hotel Vegas.
NOV. 9: Sydney Wright, “Seiche.”
NOV. 9: Frenchie’s Blues Destroyers, “Love Is Blood.”
NOV. 10: Bruce Smith, “Til The Wheels Fall Off,” release show Nov. 10 at Saxon Pub.