Delivery Girl – Betsy Lucas (LuCasa Farms Records) $11.99+$3.99 shipping
On her debut album, Bay Area songwriter Betsy Lucas has managed to do something that is highly rare and very special – she has created music that’s undeniably retro but doesn’t hit you over the head and drag you whimpering into it’s campy, so bad-it’s-good pop cultural boneyard where you’re forced to drink out of Sonny and Cher mugs while being patted on the head for getting the joke. Delivery Girl harkens back to the singer-songwriter salad days of Carly Simon, Carole King, and Joan Armatrading, with soulful pop-rock that’s brainy, vulnerable, and snap-your-fingers catchy. The tracks “One Way Love”, “Do I Dare”, and “If She Goes”, are the sound of a woman with a finely developed musical range who nevertheless understands the immediate benefits of throwing a few shoo-be-doos and la-la-las into the mix. The instrumentation has as much to do with the ’70s feel as Lucas’s voice (though she does sound spookily like Carly)– and the inventive arrangements, augmented by flute, keyboards, and trumpet, give songs like “Walls of Convention” an ambitious heft.
About the Artist
Betsy Lucas is a San Francisco/Bay Area songwriter and singer who has a history as deep and rich as the songs this album presents. She comes from a musical family, in this case one in which both parents were Barbershop Quartet Champions. Inspired early on by songwriting greats like the Beatles, Joni Mitchell and Laura Nyro, among others, Betsy honed her songwriting chops and forged her own style. Another influence was her Uncle, Bob Lucas, who has songs featured on Alison Krauss’ latest grammy winning album. Betsy soon set off on her own path playing solo and gigging with bands and was a featured artist on local Upper Michigan radio as early as the age of fifteen. This lead to a stint in Nashville being produced by legendary session man Fred Carter, Jr. After re-locating to the Bay Area, she played extensively in acoustic & rock clubs with many notable musicians. She has spent the last couple years recording and now emerges from the studio with this strong independent release. In this case the title is quite fitting, because this CD does just that…delivers – meaningful songwriting with soulful singing and playing. Contributing their sounds to this premiere CD release are a host of excellent S.F./Bay Area players including: David Immergluck (Counting Crows, John Hiatt), Jim Prescott (G.Love & Special Sauce), Adam Levy (Tracy Chapman’s Grammy winning CD), Dave Ziegner, Michael Stadler, Jessica Lucas (aka “Jelt”) and Joanne Bussiere. Plus many others… Band members include Betsy Lucas on songs, vocals, guitars and assorted instruments. Bro’ Martin Lucas: Drums, backing vocals, midi and percussion.
Betsy Lucas’ Delivery Girl is soulful pop with an emphasis on stellar songwriting and unique, heartfelt vocals. Best termed “alternative soul-folk”, these original tunes exude a classic air and reveal a timeless quality without resorting to cliche’s. Betsy really is the San Francisco/Bay Area’s best kept musical secret; but not for long…