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Rising County Star- Abbi Walker , San Antonio Woman Magazine

Abbi Walker: A Rising Country Star


BY JASMINA WELLINGHOFF
PHOTOGRAPHY BY JANET ROGERS

Abbi Walker grew up singing in church choirs, but when she decided to make singing her career, she chose a very different music genre — her own brand of country tinged with Southern rock and a bit of soul here and there. Her recently released second album, Fiesty, sizzles with assertive, dynamic numbers that both move you and make you want to move. In a letter to this magazine, the singer/songwriter described the album as “most definitely a record for women, more specifically it’s for Texas women…

“I am first-generation Texan from both sides of my family. My mom is from Oklahoma, and my dad is from Mississippi,” explains the tall, blond Walker, who indeed looks like a Texas gal. “I didn’t realize how much Texas had shaped my life until I was older and moved away… I grew up listening to strong female singers, but now Texas country music is totally dominated by men. On the top 100 charts, maybe 10 percent are women. So it was important for me to present music written by a woman for women who are one half of the market. Texas women have a strong Texas identity. It’s a sisterhood.”

The sisterhood, and other fans, got to know Walker through her live shows as well as her first six-track record, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, which featured the song, Southern Soul, that made it into the top 20 on the Texas Country Radio Chart. Live performances regularly take her all over Texas, including memorable gigs at the San Antonio and Houston Stock Shows and Rodeos. In Houston, Walker was the only female act last year to headline a concert at the famed Hideout Club, which is known for spotlighting the best bands in Texas. “That was a really big deal,” says the artist, who followed Miranda Lambert’s touring show. She will also appear at the 2016 San Antonio Rodeo (see box).

Fans also helped fund the production of Fiesty through an IndieGoGo campaign, which raised $20,000 for the project. All the songs except the old hymn, All is Well, are written by Walker in collaboration with her husband, Ryan Petkoff, or the producer, Rick Alvarez, who also worked with the Dixie Chicks. Fiesty was recorded in San Antonio in Alvarez’s studio with some of the best musicians around, including Texas country legend Lloyd Maines.

The title Fiesty reflects her personality. “Oh, yes! My family says I have always been ‘spirited,’” she explains, laughing. “I am a strong, feisty person.” A Dallas Observer writer got that message clearly when she described Walker’s style in this way: “Vocally, Walker sounds as Texan as they come, and the take-no-shit Southern woman attitude is on prominent display.” The article went on to say that several of the Fiesty tracks could rise to the top spot on the Texas Music Chart.

To help that happen, the talented songstress works hard on promotion, too. Given that the radio station DJs pretty much control what the public will hear, she recently embarked on a grueling four-state trip to visit as many stations as she could, driving thousands of miles while subsisting on Subway sandwiches. “It was a huge learning curve” for her. One thing she will not do, however, is change her music to fit the commercially popular trend. “You want to be liked and you want your music to be played, but if it comes at the cost of artistic authenticity, then what have you gained?” she wonders. “One of the reasons I write my own songs is because I know what I want to say. I can’t sing what I don’t believe in.”

Finding Her Own Voice
Although born in Amarillo, Walker grew up in Alamo Heights, the oldest of Baptist minister Dr. David Walker’s three children. Our interview takes place in her parents’ new home on Summit Avenue, in a room dominated by the imposing head and mighty horns of King Edward the Elk, shot many moons ago by her father. All the men in the Walker family are hunters, she says. King Edward has been a steady presence throughout her childhood and adolescence.

Her musical education started at her grandmother’s knee, as grandma Jane Walker — who with her sister sang in Campus Crusades all over the U.S. — played the piano and encouraged the very young Abbi to sing along. Then came the church choirs and the study of classical piano. What she learned from choral music, she notes, is how to incorporate harmonies in the songs she writes today. Music took a back seat in college, however, as she opted to major in marketing and pursued marketing jobs for a while.

Still, she could never completely stay away from the thrill of live performance, which has always had the power to make her feel fully alive. She remembers even enjoying the shows she and her sister put on “for the squirrels,” when they were little, with fake microphones in their hands. Not surprisingly, Walker recorded two gospel albums before she ever thought of going country, and was, in fact, invited by a Nashville label to work on a new one when the financial markets crashed in 2008 and the offer was withdrawn. As years passed, she found herself increasingly drawn to country music.

“It’s the most authentic genre. Country music sings about real life. I also liked how the CMA Awards showed respect for faith and family. That’s what I wanted to be associated with,” says the artist.

Yet it took her a while to find her true voice. Life as a preacher’s daughter had imposed a certain pressure on her to behave like a gentle, Godly woman. “I spent 25 years of my life terrified of what people thought about me,” she explains. “I followed the rules and became subservient. I didn’t know how to harness my energy. When my dad once said that I had a racehorse kind of personality, I heard it as a condemnation.”

Fortunately, Walker eventually realized that spirited women like herself have always been part of country music. The first time she performed her own material was scary, but bythe end of the show, “I loved it.” Being herself and singing heart-crafted stories is what she was meant to do.

“I’LL BE ME AND YOU’LL BE YOU (THE AUDIENCE), AND WE’LL BE FINE,” SHE CONCLUDED.

Having other women identify with her songs means a great deal to her. Eschewing the almost formulaic love songs that dominate so much of popular music, she writes lyrics that amount to a proclamation of independence: Don’t be afraid to show the world who you are, get out of toxic relationships, don’t let rules suffocate you, and don’t let anyone stop you from pursuing your dreams.

Her own dream right now is to someday pack arenas and help women empower themselves, one show at the time. “I want to be an arrow of hope,” she notes.

 

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Best In Texas Music Magazine

Abbi Walker's on the market and brings an attitude that fits her album title FEISTY. She delivers a SOLID COUNTRY ALBUM with OUTSTANDING SONGS including "Oklahoma Royalty", "Shaking Off Your Dust", "Ask Me To Dance", and "It Is Well."

For those music and program directors that think female singers sing only about rainbows and unicorns, I can tell you there are no rainbows or unicorns on this album. Abbi Walker has some serious songwriting and singing chops that are well showcased on FEISTY."

FOUR STARS!!!! 

Ken Murray K-TEX 106 Bryan, College Station for BEST IN TEXAS MUSIC MAGAZINE

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Breaking the holds that have barred females in country music for too long...

“Abbi Walker is breaking the holds that have barred females in country music for far too long. She proves with FEISTY’s diverse track catalog that she’s not stopping TIL her anthems of self-love are blasting throughout a stadium near you. A woman on a mission. Abbi Walker will be a nationwide name, because she won’t stop unil it is. “

Stephanie Schaefer 106.9 The Ranch Corsicana

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Texas Music Pickers- Steve

TEXAS MUSIC PICKERS: Steve

 

“WOW ! ...Abbi Walker had an amazing 2014 with the success of her 6 song  EP "KISS KISS - BANG BANG"  ...landing two top 30 singles , as well as both of the songs landing in the top 200 Songs of 2014 , and then being nominated by TMP as 2014 NEWCOMER OF THE YEAR and featured in "BANDS TO LOOK FOR IN 2015 "  ...and NOW here comes the release of her brand new album FEISTY !

With the arrival of FEISTY - the full length album set for release on Sept 1 , Abbi Walker will certainly continue on the fast train up the mountain to the next plateau of the Texas Music Scene...it's going to be a great 2015 for the recently nominated ..TRRR -FEMALE OF THE YEAR ! All songs on this new record except one were written , or co- written by Abbi and the  project was all produced in the Lone Star State with Texas musicians..it is truly ..MADE IN TEXAS . FEISTY ..is a collage of Texas Country and Rock that races you down the open highway  - swerving and skidding as you hang on to the thrill of the ride - slowing you down for just a moment as you anxiously take a breath ..as the album changes to the next great track ! FEISTY ..is sure to make 2015 another amazing year for this Texas Picker ...add the whole album to your playlist ..you can thank us later !”

 

 

 

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Texas Music Pickers - FB

We just finished our first round of our advanced copy of Abbi Walker Official's brand new record ..FEISTY ..set for release in September . WOW !...it's a fireball shot of driving country and rock ..with a smooth chaser of swing and ballad ...then finished up so ever gracefully at the end ..like a fine wine ! You might call it country mixed largely with rock ...all we know is TEXAS ROCKS !...with Abbi Walker ! More to come on this great album ... But for now ..we're going to have another round of FEISTY ! ...then maybe another.. and another ..

 

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Abbi Walker Is Riding A Wave of Southern Girl Power to Transform Texas Country

DALLAS OBSERVER  August 20th, 2015

Original Link: http://www.dallasobserver.com/music/abbi-walker-is-riding-a-wave-of-southern-girl-power-to-transform-texas-country-7508365

By Amy McCarthy

2015 is shaping up to be the year that women in country music make a comeback, and it’s about damn time. Since the beginning of the year, many of the genre’s strongest releases — Kacey Musgraves’Pageant Material and Ashley Monroe’s The Blade, among others — have come from so-called“tomatoes” who have broken up the monotony of the mainstream country music field and its songs about trucks and fornicating in corn fields. You can add Abbi Walker to the list now, too.

In Texas country that monotony is even more pronounced. With a few very talented exceptions, the genre’s stylistic departure from its Nashville inspiration has not resulted in much diversity. Most Texas country, especially the commercially viable stuff, is written and performed by dudes. In Dallas, though, Walker is planning to shake all that up with an impressive album that could represent a turning point for the genre's women, who have been ignored for too long.

You may remember Walker from the 2012 single “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang,” an upbeat, pop-country track that performed moderately well on the Texas country charts, but was sorely under-appreciated by country fans and critics alike. Now, though, Walker is coming out in a much more fierce, in-your-face way, and not a moment too soon. In September, she’ll release her sophomore effort Feisty, an album that certainly lives up to its name.

On Feisty, Walker shows significant growth as an artist, one whom fans clearly wanted to see more of. The release of Feisty was crowd-funded via an IndieGogo campaign, raising more than $20,000 for the production of the album. Texas country legend Lloyd Maines lends his hall-of-fame talent on the pedal steel and dobro, in what is some of the best instrumentation on the album. Holistically, Feisty is a stratospheric leap forward for Walker, and it couldn’t have come at a better time for this burgeoning artist.

Stylistically, Walker is sort of a cross between Shania Twain and Miranda Lambert, which is a remarkable recipe for success in country music. There’s plenty of Nashville polish, slicked up vocals and a sound that has potential for real mainstream success. But there's still plenty of authenticity here: Vocally, Walker sounds as Texan as they come, and the take-no-shit Southern woman attitude is on prominent display in tracks like “Too Good A Woman” and “Well Behaved Too Long.” There aren’t any of the sweet, sappy love tracks that have brought acts like RaeLynn to prominence.

Still, fans shouldn’t expect Walker to have an easy time on the Texas country charts, and that has everything to do with the fact that she is a woman. Even some of the genre’s most talented artists, like Bri Bagwell and Sunny Sweeney, have really struggled to find their place in a musical landscape that is somehow more male-dominated than Nashville. At present, there are only two women on the entire Texas Music Chart, both of whom are well within the bottom half. There’s a reason that Lambert went off to Nashville as soon as she had the chance.

But if the changes in mainstream country, and the blockbuster successes of in-your-face artists like Lambert and Angaleena Presley, are any indication, this could be the perfect time for an artist like Walker to transform into a star, regional or otherwise. At this point, even a No. 1 single on the Texas Music Chart would be a massive success for a female artist, and there are plenty of tracks from Feisty, title track included, that are perfect candidates. Especially when you consider the big batch of same ol’, same ol’ that currently sits at the top of the chart.

Walker won’t be the singular artist that will reintegrate women back into the fabric of Texas country. But what she can do, assuming that Texas radio DJs and fans alike are ready to play ball, is make it easier for the massively talented female artists that have been toiling away across this state for the past 15 years. Walker and an artist like Madison King might be polar opposites stylistically, but once the idea that women can be successful in Texas country has been reestablished, the opportunity grows exponentially.

It goes without saying that a more diverse music scene is better for Texas country. There is too much talent in this state for it to be entirely dominated by the same 10 or 15 (male) artists who have been making this music since the 1990s, or for the (male) artists who look and sound just like them. Even if Walker’s Feisty isn’t the most traditional Texas country album, it has significant potential to pave the way for a very real change that has been needed in this music for a very long time. "

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ABBI WALKER- Bands To Look Out For in 2015 - TEXAS MUSIC PICKERS

Abbi Walker kicked this year off with a bang…a “Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang” that is; which was her first single to radio and reached all the way to #27! Let’s be honest, it’s much harder for female artists to chart songs, which makes a debut single inside the Top 30 all the more impressive! The song stayed half of 2014 inside the Top 100 and helped pave the way for her follow-up single “Southern Soul”, which is currently at #28 and still climbing! Both of her singles made the Texas Regional Radio Report’s Top 200 Songs of 2014, with “Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang” at #87, and “Southern Soul” at #180!” Walker covered over 8,000 miles of road this year, visiting stations in Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Kansas on her first radio tour. She played the largest outdoor stage to a crowd of 6,000 at the San Antonio Rodeo, along with the Texas Crawfish Festival, the Crosby Fair and Rodeo, and opened for Jack Ingram at the The Rustic’s Independence Day Concert in Dallas.

Walker was nominated for New Female Vocalist of the Year at the Big Star 97 Awards and nominated for Newcomer of the Year by Texas Music Pickers. She is looking forward to great things for 2015, as the band just raised over $20,000 through “Crowd Funding” for their next record “Feisty”; due out in early 2015! Be on the lookout for amazing talent this year!

FROM http://www.texasmusicpickers.com/bands-to-look-out-for-in-2015-part-2/

 

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Abbi Walker At The Houston Rodeo- The Only Female to Play The Hideout in 2015

The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo features the best national musical acts, year in and year out, but fans who have attended the show know about a special event that showcases the best musicians that Texas has to offer. The Hideout concert series focuses simply on the best Texas country bands going today and these hot performers hit the stage each night following the national touring acts.

One of the can’t miss acts this year on the Hideout stage is Abbi Walker, who will perform on Thursday, March 5. Not only is Walker the only female solo performer at the Hideout in 2015, but she is also getting the chance to show her stuff following the Miranda Lambert concert, a perfect combination if there ever was one. Abbi Walker took the time to talk with AXS about this opportunity and the state of female country music in Texas.

AXS: Congratulations on your first Top 20 song on the Texas Country Radio charts.

Abbi Walker: Thank you very much. We were very excited. Honestly, I was relieved, which is a funny way to express gratitude, but we were working so hard. “Southern Soul” had been on country radio for over five months, so that is a long time for a song to climb. I thought we could do it, but you never really know. It’s so out of your hands and is up to the radio stations and listeners. The people really came through and I was extremely grateful. I’m still kind of taking it in.

AXS: How did you get your start in music?

Abbi Walker: I’m a fourth generation Baptist preacher’s daughter. I grew up in church and was always singing, but even before I was in organized choir and singing in church, my grandmother, Jane Walker, and her sister travelled and sang in Campus Crusade all over the country. She had me, at age three, by her piano and singing, so she was the first one to introduce me to my own voice. I grew up around it, not in a professional but in a cultural sense. But, I am the first one in my family to try to make it in country music.

AXS: It sounds like your family was your biggest influences in music, but what other mainstream acts influenced your musical style?

Abbi Walker: The cool thing about growing up in Texas is that you can’t escape country music. When I grew up, I loved The Judd’s, Martina and Reba, Faith Hill, Pam Tillis, and on and on down the list. It wasn’t a far-fetched dream for me at all as a little kid, because I saw women on stage all the time in sold out arenas. I grew up with those, but more recently I am a huge Miranda Lambert fan, which is why this show is such a big deal with me. I love what she does musically, but most of all I love how she carries herself as a woman in this industry. She is her own person, she knows what she wants to say and how she wants to say it, and that is really refreshing. There are too many situations that you can get into as a female artist, where they just want you to look pretty, sing pretty and be a pretty little thing. That’s not my personality, and she has been a breath of fresh air to me in a lot of situations.

Also, Brandi Carlile, I have always been a big fan, and there is a band on Big Machine called Cadillac Three. Before they got signed, they put out their first independent label. Jaren Johnston, he is a big time songwriter in Nashville, but with Cadillac Three, their first album was southern rock at its finest. I just wore that record out. It was a huge influence to me over the last couple of years because I tend to land more in the southern rock genre than independent country.

AXS: How big is it for you, as a South Texas artist, to perform at the Hideout at the HLSR?

Abbi Walker: It is huge and so overwhelming. I knew it was really a longshot. I played by hometown rodeo last weekend in San Antonio, and that is great in your hometown, but both my grandmother’s live in Houston. The way it works is, you submit and then you kind of harass these people for the booking of the rodeo so they don’t forget about me. When they let me know that we were booked for the date, and then the lineup came out and I saw I was playing after Miranda Lambert, my phone blew up. It was a really great day. I love the cultures of the rodeo, the celebration and people having a good time. We were honored because this is the biggest show I have ever played. What is important to me is that I do right by these people who gave me this chance and make them proud.

AXS: You are the only solo female artist booked in the Hideout this year. What is the state of female country music in Texas right now? You might think, with the success of Miranda Lambert and Carrie Underwood, there would be more opportunities at events like this for female artists.

Abbi Walker: It is really interesting. Anyone could Google “female artists in country music” and read articles for days on why people speculate on why it is still so male dominated on the national scene and on the local Texas scene. I don’t know why that is, but I have some ideas. A lot of program directors are males, a lot of guys don’t like to listen to female’s music, but the crazy thing is that half of their market are females and they want to hear songs by other females. I wouldn’t be where I am today if I hadn’t heard the females I heard on the radio and saw on the stage. There is an extra fire in my belly to make sure that we do a good job of connecting with female listeners. When that little girl in the front row’s eyes light up, and I see her thinking that I want to do this, it feels like this is something I am supposed to do.

I don’t know why exactly. I have heard from venues before that people just don’t dance when we have female acts in. Typically, females are known for ballads and stuff like that. Understand, there is one Miranda Lambert and there is one Carrie Underwood and they are very different artists, but they are both very powerful. I think it is also about having something to say that people can really connect with. I am in the studio right now working on a new record called Feisty, and we intentionally have created a strong handful of songs that are great dance songs because I sure don’t want that excuse used for me. Also, as female artists we have to do a better job of connecting with female listeners and give them something more to connect to than just fun songs. That is just my personal opinion, but it usually swings from female dominated scenes to males, so it is just catching it at the right time.

AXS: You have a great fan base, and actually raised the money for your new album through crowd funding. How can fans across the country discover Abbi Walker and hear your music? I mean, the Internet has got to be a blessing for new artists.

Abbi Walker: Yeah, it is huge. I don’t know how you can be an artist today and not have a social media presence. I connect more with listeners through social media a lot of times than I even do at shows. You can only talk to so many people at the end of the show, but social media gives you the chance to hear from people throughout the week. We are on Facebook,abbiwalkermusic.com is our website, I do a lot of Instagram, and we have Twitter and all that stuff. ReverbNation is a great resource because it livestreams all of your music for free, with videos and show dates and all that kind of stuff. We utilize those very heavily.

We also do a lot of videos in the studios to give people updates and make people feel like they are really part of it because we can’t do it without them. The coolest things for me is getting messages from other women who are chasing their dreams, and my mantra is that courage is just as contagious as fear. If I can step out and be brave, and even share with people when I bomb, it shows how much authenticity I have as an artist and a person. It is a deeper connection with my listeners than just liking a song. Hopefully, this means they get more out of the experience than just bopping their heads and having fun.

Abbi Walker plays the Hideout concert series on Thursday, March 5, with the performance scheduled to begin at 10:15 p.m., following the Miranda Lambert concert. The Hideout is a 21-to-enter show and is included in the ticket price to the 2015 HLSR.

 

FROM: http://www.axs.com/news/abbi-walker-interview-bringing-a-female-touch-to-the-hlsr-hideout-seri-42160

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Reviews for Southern Soul

Southern Soul” the latest single from Abbi Walker is not just a song but yet a manual for southern moxie!This autobiographical town provides Abbi’s fans an insight into how this artist got her kickin-butt and takin-name’s attitude. Abbi is quickly becoming a pioneer for female country music artists- she never ceases to amaze me. You go girl!" 

Stephanie Schaefer 106.9 The Ranch Corsicana, TX

 

"Stand up and take notes y'all, Texas Music has a woman who brings it Southern Style as any man! Abbi Walker takes command loud and proud with her latest single "Southern Soul"  Somebody call me a doctor, cuz I'm losing control, my toes are tappin', my feet are stompin', my hands are clappin', Sothern Soul is another Hit for Abbi"! 

JD Rose   Rebel Country www,rebelcountrymusicradio.com

 

"Whiskey Myers created the “Ballad of a Southern Man” well Abbi Walker created the Ballad of a Southern WOMAN with “Southern Soul.” Stephanie Schaefer 106.9 The Ranch

 

Abbi Walker's new single "Southern Soul" is Southern Fun and Soul at its best.  It's sassy, fun and she has mass appeal with the new country demo.  Obviously the ladies lover her attitude and the guys like the looks.  This is a great follow-up to ""Kiss Kiss Bang Bang".  Stillwater has caught thatSouthern Soul Fever!" Jay McRae KGFY Stillwater, OK

 

Southern Soul” is a lot like Abbi Walker in that the song is fun, upbeat and just a tad soulful. For my listeners that enjoyed “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang”, I believe they will be blown away by the followup."

 Charles Sagona, KBST Big Spring, Texas

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Texas Crawfish Festival Review

Texas born and bred singer songwriter Abbi Walker is in the middle of a whirlwind. She has been landing huge gigs opening up for country headliners such as Jack Ingram and The Charlie Daniels Band, and now she is making her radio debut with the release of her new single Kiss Kiss Bang Bang.

Abbi is everything you want in a female country singer. For one she is very easy on the eyes and a total sassy sweetheart, but more importantly her vocals will knock you on the floor while her catchy songs will have you toe tapping and and wanting to sing along. Miss Walker is the daughter of a preacher and has been singing since she was just 3 years old standing at her grandmother’s piano barely tall enough to reach the keys. She quickly fell in love with not just singing, but songwriting and learning how to tell her story in her own words. Her songs are authentic and relatable and that type of talented songwriting ability is definitely something that will serve her well and set her apart on her road to the top. Abbi’s sound has many layers. Her fresh feisty lyrics are spit with deep Gospel soul and sweet harmonies mixed with a touch of gritty Southern Rock that keeps you coming back for more.

The track hit the airwaves yesterday to warm reviews. Have your ears peeled and be sure to call your favorite country radio station and request KISS KISS BANG BANG!!!

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Review by Reene Bradshaw and ONEFRB.com

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Review by Reene Bradshaw and ONEFRB.com

 First reaction..."Oh HELL no!  I'm not going to like her!  She's one of those people...she's thin, gorgeous, and BLONDE!"  Did I mention that she is younger than me?  Did I mention that she has a dharlin' (misspelled intentionally) personality.  UUUGH!  Sometimes a girl...no a sistah, can WIN YOU OVER completely!

This was the case with my new girlfriend, Abbi Walker!  She was a total breath of fresh air, one that she exhibits on her "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang" EP.  (http://www.abbiwalkermusic.com/).  We had spoken briefly via email, and some text, but never personally.  However, our emails were hilarious.  When I read her bio, and watched her vimeo, I knew we were destined to be joined at the hip!  (https://vimeo.com/65641532)  I had to LOL when the material she sent over prior to our interview included a note about Abbi being a preacher's daugher (Abbi says she wasn't the rebel preacher's daughter that I was!  PFFFTT!!!), being a pretty good shot, and could start a fire faster than her peers, I KNEW the friendship was meant to be!  And even despite her BLONDENESS, HER ADORABLENESS, and her THINNESS, she and I would still be forever friends.

Who is Abbi Walker?  I like to call her a Texas, Rockabilly SONGSTRESS.  Abbi says J-MO calls her a cross between Adele and Miranda Lambert.  Here is what the pro's say -- 

 "Abbi Walker is a fresh, edgy, southern soul and country artist with the talent and personality as big her home state. Raised in South Texas as a Preacher's kid, Abbi was heavily influenced by gospel music, Southern culture, and Texas grit. An independent artist and songwriter, Abbi is confident, funny, and as sassy as they come. Taught to sing by her grandmother on an old upright piano at the age of just 3, Abbi fell in love with the art of music and songwriting immediately. "I learned early on that being a songwriter was an incredibly important part of being an authentic artist. The ability to say well what you want to say, the way you want to say it is extremely important to me as an artist and as a person. It just does not go well if someone tries to speak on my behalf or tell me who I should be. I am the same way with my music..." 

Abbi says, "I approached this EP wanting to do two things really well. The first was to create a record that melodically sounded like all of the things that go on inside of me: music I love: deep rhythms, harmonies, sass, rock, chord structures that make me feel alive and happy…  This is the soundtrack to my life! Second of all, I wanted to write and record songs that lyrically sounded like the conversations I have with my friends and family. Southerners are naturally some of the funniest people on the planet, and Southern women are just pistols. This record is in many ways, a celebration of those strong, crazy, hilarious, loyal Southern Women. There's no one else in the whole world like them. Phrases like "Sister fell off that crazy train",  "I ALWAYS keep it classy", or "Girl, you just need to pick up your skirts and RUN from that man. He is nothin but trouble!" are just normal conversation pieces in my life. I wanted to make music that would make women smile, laugh, cry, and sing along. I really feel like we did that, and did it well!" 

Abbi worked with producer Rick Alvarez in Texas to record all 6 original songs for her "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang EP", released in April of 2013. Country music legend Lloyd Maines, played pedal steele on two of the tracks, including the heartbreaker "Old Southern Love", which tells an incredible story of a Tennessee couple facing the rising waters of the flood of 2010. In addition, Grammy winning fiddle player Bobby Flores left his mark on the record with his smoking solo work on the title track and several others. 

Abbi Walker is a force to be reckoned with, and she is ready to take country music by storm, even as an independent. Her Kiss Kiss Bang Bang EP is a sweet kick in the mouth of southern goodness, Texan grit, and rock and roll.

I say, let the girl kick the boys to the curb, and rock on with her bad self!  Abbi Walker, I love that you are sticking to your guns (revolver I would guess), and making the music that you love, a little country and little bit rock and roll (funk, punk, and junk rock and roll)!

Note to yourself - My favorite part of our time together was that Abbi brought her Grandmother with her to this interview.  I was in Heaven.  (Pun intended, again, given that we were in a renovated church!)  You all know how much I love my GRANNY!  So, it was another factor in the REENE/ABBI friendship.

A special thank you to the fine people, especially Miguel and David, at Mark's American Cuisine (http://www.marks1658.com/) for allowing us to sit upstairs at the restaurant for our meeting.

Can a girl get an AMEN?  Rock on sista, Run RUN Baby, KISS that SOUTHERN SOUL, and be GROWN, off into the WILDERNESS, and kicking that NASHVILLE FLOOD!  Cheers to your EP, KISS KISS BANG BANG!  Wishing you mucho grande success!

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Review From GotCountryOnline.com by Donna Block

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Review From GotCountryOnline.com by Donna Block

 

As you read her bio, you have to stop at “once accidently put her brother’s head through a wall.” Um, ok. This preacher’s kid grew up in south Texas, where gospel music played an important part in her upbringing. Abbi Walker was taught to sing at age 3 by her grandmother, who accompanied her on an old upright piano. Abbi knew exactly what she wanted on Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, which she calls the soundtrack to her life.

 

Her self-written lyrics are crafted to sound like conversations she has with family and friends, “Southerners are naturally some of the funniest people on the planet, and Southern women are just pistols. This record is in many ways, a celebration of those strong, crazy, hilarious, loyal Southern Women.

 

There’s no one else in the whole world like them. Phrases like “Sister fell off that crazy train”,  “I ALWAYS keep it classy”, or “Girl, you just need to pick up your skirts and RUN from that man. He is nothin but trouble!” are just normal conversation pieces in my life. I wanted to make music that would make women smile, laugh, cry, and sing along. I really feel like we did that, and did it well!’

 

According to Abbi, it was producer Rick Alvarez who took her work to the next level, helping her create her own sound, one that included musicians Lloyd Maines on pedal steel and Bobby Flores on fiddle. Her music combines “deep rhythms, harmonies, sass, rock, and chord structures” that make her feel “alive and happy.”

 

Run Run Baby Baby starts off sounding like an old western, the dueling sides ready to shoot, with the outcome never in doubt. Score one for the women!

 

Southern Soul … “mind of my own and stubborn to the bone” … Kiss Kiss Bang Bang … “there’s a whole lot of crazy in those big brown eyes” … I’ve Grown … “I just want to love you I don’t want to owe you” … Wilderness … “Let them go” …

 

Nashville Flood is a song about a couple, married for 60 years, who faced the rising waters, hand-in-hand. The wife might’ve survived but she would have had to leave her husband behind. She chose to stay with the man with whom she had raised a family. Ironically they’d be found by a man, unfaithful to his own wife, but brought to his knees realizing what Southern love had meant to this couple.

 

There is so much complexity, so many layers, to each song, that it is rather difficult to compare to other artists.

Miranda Lambert meet Abbi, another very strong Southern woman, who has her own gunpowder and lead, should she too feel the need to use them.

 

You can download her new EP HERE via iTunes or HERE via Amazon.

 

GotCountryOnline Rating: 4 and 1/2 out of 5 stars!!!! 

 

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Review From CountrysChatter.com by Donna Rae

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Review From CountrysChatter.com by Donna Rae

 I have several artists I’ve been wanting to tell you all about. Some I met on Facebook or Twitter, some I met at local shows, some just sent a CD in the mail – and I was impressed enough to put them on my ‘Let’s tell the world about this one’ list. Abbi Walker is one I have ben wanting to write about since I first heard her music nearly two months ago. But, as many of you know, I’ve been going through a rather difficult time recently, and there have been a lot of things that got pushed to the back burner. Now that I have a few minutes this morning, I wanted to share Abbi Walker with all of you.

You can listen to 14 of Abbi’s songs on Reverbnation. No matter which one you start with, you will immediately understand why the description ‘edgy, Southern soul’ works for Abbi. That is not only a definition, but a very accurate description of her unique sound. The Reverbnation ‘Sounds LIke’ section lists artists such as Miranda Lambert, Gavin DeGraw and Carrie Underwood. And while that may be true to a degree, I believe Abbi’s vocals are uniquely her own.

I have been listening to all of her songs for the past few months. And I thought I would be able to just list a few of my favorites and tell you all to head over and listen to those. But, I don’t have any favorites. Every one I listen to, I like just as much as the one I heard before it. Whether they are fast, slow, mid-tempo… it really doesn’t matter. They are all good! They all have a melody you will love and lyrics you will remember. If someone told me I really had to pick a few of the songs and label them ‘favorites’, I think I would have to list “Nashville Flood,” “Go Down Swinging,” “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang,” “Wilderness” and “I’m Grown” as the ones I’ve listened to most. 

I would like to share Abbi’s bio, so here you go…. It certainly tells her story better than I can.  Abbi Walker is a fresh, edgy, southern soul and country artist with the talent and personality as big her home state. Raised in South Texas as a Preacher’s kid, Abbi was heavily influenced by gospel music, Southern culture, and Texas grit. An independent artist and songwriter, Abbi is confident, funny, and as sassy as they come. Taught to sing by her grandmother on an old upright piano at the age of just 3, Abbi fell in love with the art of music and songwriting immediately. “I learned early on that being a songwriter was an incredibly important part of being an authentic artist. The ability to say well what you want to say, the way you want to say it is extremely important to me as an artist and as a person. It just does not go well if someone tries to speak on my behalf or tell me who I should be. I am the same way with my music. Go on and sit down there, Sparky. I can speak my mind."

With both heavy southern and Texan influences, Abbi’s music has deep roots, but a fresh, unique sound. Although her musical influences are diverse, you can hear shades of a feisty Miranda Lambert, 3 part harmonies like The Pistol Annies, the deep soulful sounds of Gospel and the South, and the swing and punch of old school Southern Rock. It’s familiar, but fresh.  Abbi says, “I approached this EP wanting to do two things really well. The first was to create a record that melodically sounded like all of the things that go on inside of me: music I love: deep rhythms, harmonies, sass, rock, chord structures that make me feel alive and happy…  This is the soundtrack to my life! Second of all, I wanted to write and record songs that lyrically sounded like the conversations I have with my friends and family. Southerners are naturally some of the funniest people on the planet, and Southern women are just pistols. This record is in many ways, a celebration of those strong, crazy, hilarious, loyal Southern Women. There’s no one else in the whole world like them. Phrases like “Sister fell off that crazy train",  “I ALWAYS keep it classy", or “Girl, you just need to pick up your skirts and RUN from that man. He is nothin but trouble!" are just normal conversation pieces in my life. I wanted to make music that would make women smile, laugh, cry, and sing along. I really feel like we did that, and did it well!"

Abbi worked with producer Rick Alvarez in Texas to record all 6 original songs for her “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang EP", released in April of 2013. “Rick was such an incredible partner throughout this process. I come from such a diverse musical background, and I did not want to create a record that sounded like anything else out there. Rick did an incredible job of helping me to take these songs to the next level and really create my sound." Country music legend Lloyd Maines, played pedal steele on two of the tracks, including the heartbreaker “Old Southern Love", which tells an incredible story of a Tennessee couple facing the rising waters of the flood of 2010. In addition, Grammy winning fiddle player Bobby Flores left his mark on the record with his smoking solo work on the title track and several others.

Abbi Walker is a force to be reckoned with, and she is ready to take country music by storm, even as an independent. Her Kiss Kiss Bang Bang EP is a sweet kick in the mouth of southern goodness, Texan grit, and rock and roll. Lookout chart-reigning country boys, there’s a Texas woman on the loose, and she’s coming for you."

There are a lot of ways you can keep up with this very talented artist. In addition to her web site and Reverbnation, be sure to visit her facebook page (and “Like” it while you’re there); and follow her on Twitter, too, @abbiwalker. Check out her Tumbler site, too. - See more at:http://www.countryschatter.com/2013/07/introducing-abbi-walkerfresh-edgy-southern-soul/#sthash.cRRSu75t.dpuf

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