When it comes to songs about holidays (at least here in the U.S.), the most popular is of course Christmas, followed by Halloween, and perhaps…St. Patrick’s Day coming in at third? Either way, it’s a rarity to hear a “holiday” song that doesn’t lean into the Hallmark hokeyness.
But if there’s one thing that Wilson Marks does on any day of the calendar, it’s subvert expectations. On top of his life as an enthusiastic music educator and prolific sideman, this Austin singer-pianist-guitarist brought us two dozen genre-bending tunes through his first full-lengths, 2015’s What Was Made for Weathering and 2018’s Peregrine. By the time Wilson’s third dozen arrived in October 2020 with True Beauty Is in the Random, he’d established his own set of hallmarks: slick witticisms and lighthearted reflections on the flaws that unite us, instrumentation that’s carefully modified to capture a unique timbre, and an accessible style of pop that’s informed by folk and Crescent City jazz.
Marks and his backing band plan on releasing yet another full-length closer to the turn of Winter, padding out the inter-seasons with a more stripped-down EP. So with what may be your final reminder for Mother’s Day before the weekend, Wilson Marks shares one of his slinkiest singles to date. Rooted as always in true storytelling that doesn’t skimp on emotion, the simplicity and sincerity of “Mother’s Day” is shoe-in to mom’s heart, especially if she’s a fan of Graceland. And if you really want to wow her with a belated Mother’s Day date, consider taking her out to see Wilson Marks Trio live next Wednesday at the Elephant Room.