April 15, 2010

Week 32 - Shelli Coe - A Girl Like Me

(Week 32 of my 52 Austin CD Reviews in 52 Weeks)  

“May your heart rest in pieces / May your wishes never come true. / May your nights be long, cold, and lonely / like mine are each night without you.”
- May Your Heart Rest In Pieces

Shelli Coe
A Girl Like Me
Big Beard Records

There are many different versions of country music. You’ve got the pop-princess version like Taylor Swift, the rock-country of Sugarland, the over-produced American Idol country, and every now and then all of the effects are stripped away and country music gets back to the basics. The latter is what you find on Shelli Coe’s latest A Girl Like Me.

In case her name doesn’t sounds familiar, concentrate on the last name. Yes, she’s the daughter of David Allen Coe, and although she doesn’t have the same outlaw-country sound of dear old’ dad, she has a firm grasp on the classic country sound. Songs about heartbreak. Songs about love. Songs about revenge. Songs about coming into your own.

With A Girl Like Me you get about 45 minutes of 2010-released classic country gold. Coe has a voice akin to Terri Clark, the kind that is a little bit lower then the bulk of female country singers out there. The kind of voice that says “I not only sing this song, but I lived it, and if you try me I’ll wipe the floor with you.”

There’s “Red Lights Flashing,” a jam about trying to let someone down… not so easily. “May Your Heart Rest In Pieces” explores the idea when the heartbreaker becomes the heartbreakee.  Flip that last theme and you’ve got  “Bryan’s Song.” She wears her heart on her sleeve in “I Love You.” Dean Seltzer joins Coe on a beautiful cover of “Please Come To Boston” originally recorded by Dave Loggins. Incidentally, David Allen Coe had a hit with this song in 1974.

In fact, she tips her hat to her dad in a few other places in this album. She’s got a rendition of the 1978 hit “If This Is Just A Game,” and the album closes with another DA Coe track, “Face To Face.” Both very impressive and keeping with the style Shelli Coe plays. She also has a little fun with one of her dad’s most memorable lines about a “perfect country and western song” on the ballad “Truly.”

My favorite track is the beautiful creeping “Falling At The Speed of Sound.” It’s a beautiful love song on A Girl Like Me. “I’m falling at the speed of sound / I’m so high I can’t see the ground. You’re voice is sweeter than any I’ve found / Falling at the speed of sound.”

From start to finish, I found A Girl Like Me to be a really good listen.  Anyone who likes classic bar-room country music will enjoy this as well. With this offering, she has proved why she has earned the nickname "The Honky Tonk Princess." For more information on Shelli Coe, visit shellicoe.com. She next plays on May 8 at Austin’s Scoot Inn.


Anonymous said...

THANK YOU for the positive review. I hope you can make it to a show soon so I can meet you ~ Shelli Coe

Sean Claes said...

No problem Shelli. You did all the work though, I just listened. Thanks for the music. I'll make a show at some point. Promise.