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Gayle Skidmore

Album: Cowley Road (2008)

Artist: Gayle Skidmore

Label: self-released

Where available/price: At live shows for $10; online at iTunes for 99 cents per downloaded song.

Songs: 1) Cheap Imitation 2) Just for Now 3) Still 4) So Beautiful 5) Crazy 6) Cowley Road (live)

Band: Gayle Skidmore (vocals, guitar, piano, banjo, melodica, glockenspiel, bells, toy piano), Aaron Bowen (lap steel, percussion, vocals), Darren Plies (bass), Holly Nigh (violin), Christopher Chelpka (cello), Jake Najor (drums), Nicole Fox (vocals)

Website: gayleskidmore.com/blog

Gayle Skidmore sings the blues, although you wouldn’t recognize it as such. Her songs draw narratives about confrontations, using oblique vignettes to tell the stories. In her first song, she sings the melancholy, biting, jilted lines, “I knew better or so I said/ Wrote you a letter I’m glad you never read/ because I was just a cheap imitation of the girl you loved.”

She continues the feeling-down theme in the second song: “We had better leave it broken/ We should just let it be broken.” Paraphrasing countless bluesmen, “She’s a good woman feeling bad.”

The music accompanying these agonized ballads isn’t your traditional Delta or Chicago lineup of guitar, harmonica, and piano; Skidmore pairs quirky (toy piano and banjo) and classical (cello and violin) with satisfying results.

“So Beautiful” and “Crazy” take a lighter turn, and our heroine seems to land a good someone to love. The tunes include the same plucky melodies as the sad songs.

“Cowley Road” is my favorite of the album. She shrugs off the sometimes-stuffy orchestral string section and oddball plucking banjo for the power of her bare voice and one acoustic guitar. When she sings of “unbearable pain,” her ferocious voice quavers with emotion.

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Album: Cowley Road (2008)

Artist: Gayle Skidmore

Label: self-released

Where available/price: At live shows for $10; online at iTunes for 99 cents per downloaded song.

Songs: 1) Cheap Imitation 2) Just for Now 3) Still 4) So Beautiful 5) Crazy 6) Cowley Road (live)

Band: Gayle Skidmore (vocals, guitar, piano, banjo, melodica, glockenspiel, bells, toy piano), Aaron Bowen (lap steel, percussion, vocals), Darren Plies (bass), Holly Nigh (violin), Christopher Chelpka (cello), Jake Najor (drums), Nicole Fox (vocals)

Website: gayleskidmore.com/blog

Gayle Skidmore sings the blues, although you wouldn’t recognize it as such. Her songs draw narratives about confrontations, using oblique vignettes to tell the stories. In her first song, she sings the melancholy, biting, jilted lines, “I knew better or so I said/ Wrote you a letter I’m glad you never read/ because I was just a cheap imitation of the girl you loved.”

She continues the feeling-down theme in the second song: “We had better leave it broken/ We should just let it be broken.” Paraphrasing countless bluesmen, “She’s a good woman feeling bad.”

The music accompanying these agonized ballads isn’t your traditional Delta or Chicago lineup of guitar, harmonica, and piano; Skidmore pairs quirky (toy piano and banjo) and classical (cello and violin) with satisfying results.

“So Beautiful” and “Crazy” take a lighter turn, and our heroine seems to land a good someone to love. The tunes include the same plucky melodies as the sad songs.

“Cowley Road” is my favorite of the album. She shrugs off the sometimes-stuffy orchestral string section and oddball plucking banjo for the power of her bare voice and one acoustic guitar. When she sings of “unbearable pain,” her ferocious voice quavers with emotion.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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