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Marcia Ball

Marcia Ball honed her powerful singing and deft, rollicking keyboard chops while growing up in the small town of Vinton, Louisiana, on the Texas border. This musical and cultural frontier has produced such other roots-music greats as Gatemouth Brown, George Jones, Janis Joplin, Clarence Garlow, Cleveland Crochet, Clifton Chenier, Joe Bonsall and Johnny and Edgar Winter.

After attending Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, Marcia hit Austin in the early 1970's, just as the Texas capital's progressive country movement was growing. Ball was an important and popular figure on the Austin scene, first as the leader of the beloved Freda & the Firedogs, and then as a solo artist signed to Capitol Records.

By the early '80s Ball was focusing on Gulf Coast rhythm & blues, and she's never looked back. In addition to her critically acclaimed Rounder albums (Soulful Dress, Hot Tamale Baby, Gatorhythms, Blue House, and Let Me Play with Your Poodle), Marcia also found time to collaborate with Angela Strehli and Lou Ann Barton on a well-received album for the Antone's label called Dreams Come True.

Full-tilt or subtle as the moment demands, this unabashed powerhouse is at home playing roadhouse rock, jump-blues, second line syncopation (a la Professor Longhair, one of Ball's idols), R&B, deep soul, and ballads. What's more, Ball's great singing and songwriting are matched by superb piano playing that is eclectic and effective.

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