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Alice Peacock November, 10th 2007

Alice Peacock I first saw (and heard) Alice Peacock when she opened for John Gorka at the Beachland Ballroom back at the turn of the century.  I was immediately impressed by her songs and intrigued by her guitar playing.  I bought her CD that night and got a chance to speak with her after the show.  She is a very gracious, very approachable person, and I am really looking forward to hosting her for a house concert.  In my opinion, this is the perfect venue for the way she engages her audience.

Needless to say, we were not disappointed! Ms. Peacock was a pleasure to work with from the moment she walked in the door. If you've followed along from some of our previous shows, you'll no doubt notice that we always seem to add some type of technical first for each new show. This show was no exception. We set up our digital piano (a nice Roland A90EX) for Alice to use, and we use two different amps to get just the right sound. We were also able to get a really nice sounding recording of the show.

Alice, of course, put on a fantastic show, and even took advantage of our hospitality by staying over night. In fact, she was such a good sport that she joined our family the next morning at a local pancake breakfast -- after all, who doesn't like pancakes?!

You can keep up with what Alice is doing and check out some of her music at her nicely done website or check out her MySpace page for more information.

If you'd like to buy some of Alice's music, you can help her and Acoustic Avenues by clicking on the links below:

Alice Peacocks's solo CDs

What the experts think

Alice Peacock hails from White Bear Lake, Minnesota, and her first two CDs, Real Day (1999) and Alice Peacock (2002), were independently released. Her latest, Who I Am, finds her on a subdivision of Universal Records, and she benefits greatly from superior production and sound quality. She has an amazing fifth for writing songs that have both depth and a pop hook that rivals those of 60s-era songwriters such as Carole King and Burt Bacharach. The album begins with "Different From the Rest," which sounds like a kindred should to both "Walk Away Renee" and Bowie's "Rebel Rebel." Elsewhere, "Baby Come Back" would have been a great song for Dionne Warwick, and "Taught Me Well" feels like the kind of tune that intelligent country artists such as Lori McKenna craft. At the heart of her sound is her excellent piano playing, which is reminiscent of both Laura Nyro and Tori Amos. Peacock also possesses a lovely, strong voice with a clean Midwestern accent that is perfect for articulating her finely crafted lyrics. The smart production on the CD draws on a wide circle of inspiration, including the Beatles-like strong bass and loopy strings of "Love," and the classic James Taylor-style fingerpicked acoustic guitar on "Sunflower," which also sports the best use of French horn heard on a non-classical album in years. Peacock seems to have assimilated the best parts of popular music made in the last 50 years and has managed to integrate it into some really fine original music. One suspects that you will be hearing much more about Alice Peacock in the near future, and her songs should provide material for more well-established artists who are looking for great songs to add to their albums.

Lahri Bond
Dirty Linen Magazine

Singer/songwriter Alice Peacock happily acknowledges that her new CD Who I Am was done in an "old school" fashion. "I really wanted to get that feeling of the way that singers and musicians used to record, without all the artificial things being added and retaining the warmth and immediacy," Peacock said. "So we cut all the songs live, particularly the vocals. There wasn't any pre-production there, and we didn't rehearse any of the songs before I went into the studio to do them. It was really me pouring out what was in my heart and singing what I felt at that moment." Peacock, who'll appear Tuesday night at 3rd and Lindsley along with Peter Bradley Adams (7 p.m., 818 3rd Ave. S., check venue for cover charge, 259-9891), is also happy her singing is more understated and subtle than brash and bombastic, a reflection of her desire to be expressive without becoming excessive. "I don't want to attack anyone, but sometimes you hear these songs and the vocalists are doing all these tricks and gimmicks, and you really don't even focus on the lyrics or the story. It becomes more an exercise than someone really presenting a song, and that's something I wanted to avoid as much as possible." Instead, she performs in a very intimate, sophisticated, yet also moving fashion, doing similar numbers to those featured on previous releases Real Day and Alice Peacock, while assisted by guitarist Danny Howes, bassist/engineer/mixer Curt Schneider, drummer Jay Bellerose and producer Andrew Williams, who also played acoustic guitar, while Peacock provided piano and guitar assistance as well. The release is also spiced by the inclusion on some tracks of strings, another new twist. "Andrew and I worked on the string arrangements together," Peacock said. "We didn't want anything to overpower the vocals, but we also wanted to make sure that they really fit the material." The results are Peacock's finest session to date, one that allows every facet of her background (including a stint as a jazz singer) to come into play, yet also is different in tone and sensibility from anything else she's done.

Ron Wynn
Nashville City Paper