Artist – Audrey Auld
CD Title – Hey Warden
Biography: Devils are not the only thing to come from Tasmania. Singer-songwriter Audrey Auld’s heart is in Country/Folk music, with a presence as big as The Outback. Her songs are the wry and poignant observations of an Aussie troubadour touring the States since 2003. Ever the fearlessly independent woman, she runs her own label Reckless Records and enjoys great success as a songwriter. Auld’s songs are recorded by Nashville stars and Carter Family descendants, are heard on the Grand Ole Opry, TV shows (Justified, The Good Guys, Longmire,NCIS New Orleans) and within the walls of San Quentin Prison where she hosted songwriting workshops from 2006 to 2012. An honest and witty writer and a spontaneous comedienne, Auld is never afraid to venture into the dark places of life and shine a humorous light upon them. It’s in her live show that you’ll really meet her. She’s entertaining, funny, heartfelt and dry. You’ll laugh and cry. She’s wickedly witty with a country sound that harks back to the days of a tight frock and a promise. But don’t be fooled – she’s Australian after all….
Auld lives in NorCal with her plumber husband, one good dog and one bad dog, where she makes jewelry, writes, heals and goes forest-bathing and beach-combing. Musicians and other artist’s and writers look for exotic locations to visit in the hopes of drawing inspiration. In the 60’s The Beatle’s traveled to India. The journey changed the band musically and in George Harrison’s case, he changed spiritually. A later example would be Led Zepplin traveleing to Headley Grange in Hampshire, England to write music for their 3rd album. Many creative people take trips to unusual locations but few travel to San Quentin prison to find inspiration for a whole CD.
This latest release is entitled “Hey Warden.” Audrey worked with a number of inmates and introduced them into music. This CD features 5 songs co-written with an actual inmate at San Quentin prison. I would think if your musical influences are coming from hardened criminals the music might be a bit gangster but this is not the case. Audrey takes the listener on a journey through multiple genres such as Country, Country Swing, Folk, Pop, Rock, Southern Rock just to cover the basics. She invited a number of seasoned musicians to join her and ‘Hey Warden‘ is a sensational reality.
If you are listening from a rock perspective you may be a bit disappointed in this offering. The mix is very thin and the production was one of less is more. If you come from the folk – folk/rock or country perspective
you will enjoy this release quite a bit. It might remind you of the old Woody Guthre recordings or many of the popular 60’s country music classics. Over-all the message is better then the messenger but nobody is keeping score. The thought that someone would work with hardened criminals to get them to open their minds and write about their life events is pretty amazing by itself. To put this to music is just a bonus.
Rating: 3/5 Stars