Audrey Auld Mezera

Music with the Dirt Left On

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Audrey Auld Mezera put together this short collection for the 2008 Folk Alliance convention to demonstrate her approach as an acoustic performer, so it's just her and her guitar, plus some extra guitar work by Brent Moyer. With ten songs, it's a bit too long to be classified as an EP, but running only 25 minutes it doesn't quite constitute a full-length album, either. The real reason it shouldn't be considered the successor to her last album, Lost Men and Angry Girls, however, is the material, which leans toward the quirky. It may be in the nature of songwriting that songwriters occasionally come up with idiosyncratic efforts that may be pleasant, if slight, or have primarily personal meaning. Auld Mezera makes it clear that this is a collection of such oddities by beginning with "40," her self-assessment of a milestone of middle age. "I'm halfway home," she sings, and she doesn't mean geographically. "Nashville #1" is a sort of tongue-in-cheek tribute to the company town this Australian expatriate country artist considers from afar. "Presidential Dreams" finds her sleeping self encountering George W. Bush and quizzing him on Iraq, while "The Butterfly Effect" pays tribute to Rosa Parks and the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. And then there's "Pub with No Beer," the only non-original, a comic Australian drinking song thrown in just for the heck of it. Attendees of the convention probably found "Tree" to be a good contemporary song in the folk tradition. But most of this recording consists of a songwriter's more whimsical cast-offs, which isn't to say that it's not entertaining, however. It is.

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