Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Audrey Auld Mezera and Andrew Hardin

Posted on Wed, Feb 27, 2008 at 4:00 AM

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Release Date: 2008-02-27

When it comes to musical tastes, Australia sometimes feels like Tennessee with kangaroos. The land down under has its own secret history (at least it’s a secret to most Americans) of singing cowboys and bluegrass groups who take as much inspiration from Celtic folk as American mountain music.

Audrey Auld Mezera is one of many Aussie natives who’ve romanticized American roots music, but, unlike most of her peers, she actually made the move to the nation that produced her favorite music.

Along the way, she has lived a kind of Americana fantasy-camp existence, performing at San Quentin, singing with Charlie Louvin, jamming on Ernest Tubb’s Midnite Jamboree, and venturing to Luckenbach, the iconic Texas bastion of simple living.

Mezera came to country fairly late, after mastering classical violin as a child, and she wound up absorbing the best elements of C&W’s convuluted history. She possesses a warm, lived-in voice that occasionally suggests a female version of Freedy Johnston’s everyman appeal. At her best, she’s also a sharp storyteller, as demonstrated by “Last Seen in Gainsville,” the crushing tale of a missing woman as told by her mystified husband. She’s even willing to goof on her own obsessions, as on “Looking for Luckenbach”: “And then I blinked and I missed Luckenbach/I drove right by that town.”

For Mezera, the myths have become a reality, and she doesn’t seem the least bit disappointed.
9:30 pm Fri, Feb 29, Casbeers, 1719 Blanco Rd., (210) 732-3511.

- Gilbert Garcia

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