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MP3 Glenna Bell - Face This World

Glenna Bell''s sound is modern Americana in the truest sense. It is a unique blend of country roots music, romantic urban culture lyrics, and Texas folk rock; all sung in a voice that is powerful yet somehow vulnerable.

10 MP3 Songs
COUNTRY: Country Folk, FOLK: Modern Folk

Raised in the woods outside Beaumont, Texas (the birthplace of George Jones), Glenna Bell was influenced by the hymns sung acappella at the church she attended with her family. Today, her songwriting reflects those origins, as well as her love for the country music she found in her parents'' collection. Glenna''s music has been described as "Johnny Cash meets Gillian Welch." It is rooted in the past but appeals to contemporary listeners.

Now Glenna''s home base is Houston, where the first time she performed downtown she was approached by a representative from a large regional entertainment firm who said he could book her "anywhere." Subsequently, she has opened as a solo act for myriad bands, always earning rave reviews and offers to play at venues from Houston to Austin to the New England states to Ireland. In 2003 and 2004 she has particularly enjoyed warming up for Hayes Carll at premier venues such as Houston''s McGonigel''s Mucky Duck and Galveston''s Old Quarter Acoustic Café.

At the Kerrville Songwriters Festival, a musical archivist documenting selected performers proposed to include Glenna on his current compilation after hearing her deliver three songs at the Ballad Tree. Prior to that, Glenna''s first recording experience occurred when two college students discovered her in a line-up of Houston acts and asked if they might use her for their final project, noting her songs'' lyrical strength and her unique vocal quality. This tape led to featured spots on Pacifica''s KPFT 90.1 FM in Houston, and this year Glenna debuted on KTXN 98.7 FM in Victoria, Texas.

To date, Glenna has recorded two full-length cd''s at Houston''s historic Sugar Hill Studios. The first, Nobody''s Girl (produced by Robbie Parrish), made it into the hands of a BMG executive in New York, who said he liked the songs so much he sent copies to connections at four major labels. His letter of introduction read, "Though I usually don''t forward cd''s, I really, really love this artist, Glenna Bell . . ."

Glenna''s most recent release, Face This World (January 2005), is produced by John Evans (Houston Press Musician of the Year two years'' running, Best Country & Western 2004, and Best Male Vocalist the last four consecutive years). John''s band backed Glenna on upright bass and drums, with John singing duets on two songs. Chris Masterson, of the Jack Ingram band, added whimsical lead guitar tracks to five of the ten songs. Brian Thomas, of the Jesse Dayton band, made a stunning guest appearance on "Cosmos Café," executing an impeccable one-take banjo performance that complements John''s grassroots washboard playing on the same song.

Sarah Sharp, Austin-based singer songwriter whose Fourth Person (2004) is a top seller at Waterloo Records, writes, "John [Evans] just produced an album for Glenna Bell that is going to be legendary. Glenna is one of the purist musicians I will ever know. Her voice is the definition of an old soul. She gives the same performance for 10 people that she would for 10,000 because there is no ego attached" (https://www.tradebit.com). Dan Workman, President of Sugar Hill Studios, says, "Glenna Bell is the Loretta Lynn of Texas. No, that''s not right, . . . she''s better" (professional credits include Destiny''s Child, ZZ Top, Clay Walker).

These are some of the most memorable responses to Glenna''s music. What makes Glenna''s sound distinctive is her subtle Texas feel and country themes like love and loss combined at times with unexpected tempos, song structure, and serious subject matter. What makes her music magnetic is her inimitable, shamanic voice, addictive melodies, and the pathos evoked by her surprisingly honest lyrics. Notably, Glenna graduated from the University of Houston''s Creative Writing Program, rated second in the nation by U.S. News and World Report.

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