Garden of Love
A singer who has been called a cross between Emmylou Harris and Aretha Franklin, New Yorker Roxanne Beck is a singer who resists categorization. As the Westchester County Weekly wrote, 'for the last decade or so, a crop of fiercely talented songwriters has been fleeing the restrictive environment of Nashville . . . Following in the footsteps of other refugees like Lyle Lovett, Steve Earle and Lucinda Williams, Roxanne Beck suffuses her bluesy-folky-country blend with her love of melodic pop/rock.' Her self-produced debut album 'Garden of Love' is a collection of intensely personal songs, hybrids that blend rock, blues and country influences. Growing up in the small college town of Searcy, Arkansas, Beck started singing in church as soon as she could talk. At the age of three, she began singing in local talent shows. As the lead singer of a band that performed locally through her high school and college years, her main influences included the Beatles, Marvin Gaye, Aretha, and female rockers like Linda Ronstadt and Chrissy Hynde. Although she graduated with an English major and a teacher's certificate, Roxanne headed for Nashville immediately after finishing her degree. Soon she was doing studio work, landing gigs at clubs like the famous Bluebird Cafe and working as a back-up singer on the Grand Ole Opry and a Nashville Network TV series. After doing a couple of projects with Nashville producers, she decided to move to New York. 'I've always been a rock singer at heart. I really didn't fit in in Nashville. Of course, in New York they hear the country and blues influence,' she laughs. Here she has developed into a sensitive, sensual, and often starkly honest songwriter. Roxanne's ability to combine raw power with naked vulnerability makes her a unique live performer. In New York she has been featured in showcases sponsored by Women in Music and The Bitter End Songwriter's Circle. She plays regularly with her band at clubs in Greenwich Village (Sidewalk Café, The Bitter End, CBGB's), as well as regionally. She has opened for New Age speaker Marianne Williamson at Town Hall and performed in April 2000 at the Lyric Recovery Festival at Carnegie Hall. She has co-written and sung back-up with fellow New York songwriters like Bruce Henderson and Jonathan Gregg. She is also an actress who has appeared in several films and does voices for animated children's shows ('Pokemon,' 'Doug'). 'Garden of Love' was recorded by producer/engineer Al Houghton (whose credits include They Might Be Giants and Life in a Blender). Musicians on the album include GRP/Verve recording artist Jon Pondel (Kombo) and Jeff Campbell (formerly of Sting's band) on guitars, Paul Ossola, whose credits include the Saturday Night Live band on bass, and Clint DeGanon (Hyram Bullock's band) on drums. Her single 'Baby I Do' has been featured on college radio stations like New York's WFUV (Fordham University). Possessing a 'a powerful voice . . . with Emmylou Harris' tenderness and sensibilities' (Sidewalk Café Newsletter, Antimatters), Roxanne promises to become a major act.