Americana soul

Paige Hill: “Sticks and Stones”

As much as us at KUTX sing the praises of native Austinites, we’d never dream of detracting from their adjoining contemporaries who are essentially a stone’s throw outside our city limits. Take for example Austin born-and-raised singer Paige Hill, who’s currently headquartered in Dallas. As part of her steady ascent to statewide stardom, Paige partakes in a regular routine of entertaining her fellow Dallasites, characterized by all kinds of Central Texas ridges – Americana, country, blues, and soul.

Weekends off are largely a thing of the past for Paige; when Hill’s not crushing it with her outfit The Kitchen Section, she’s supporting Evan Boyer & The Remedy or contributing her pipes for more pious purposes at her neighborhood church. In keeping up with her fervently feminine counterparts, Paige Hill’s lyrical prominence lies in relating personal experiences of heartache, infatuation, brood pride, and comeback character arcs. And thankfully, alongside her willingness to offer up services as a vocal accompanist or co-writer for hire, Hill’s original works inspire listeners to dance through the damage, laugh through the tears, or cry out frustration when stuck in a rut.

That gendered sense of strength surrounds Paige Hill’s upcoming debut EP Good Woman, a five-song summit that embodies some of the most resilient female characteristics. This handful of tracks tackles ’70s-style country and classic soul on top of contemporary rock and blues for an Americana-anchored odyssey of well-intentioned, bricks-bouncing-off-bones toughness. So before Good Woman arrives, take a page out of Hill’s book by overlooking life’s more paltry remarks with the the one tune on the record not entirely penned by Paige herself. A collaboration between co-writer Guillermo Murillo and horn arranger Preston Lewis, the optimistic soul of “Sticks and Stones” (complete with sax and trumpet stabs, adroit organ and keyboard work, plus Paige’s powerhouse vocals atop it all) soars far above expectations for a newcomer like Paige within a succinct three-minute runtime.

The Watters: “Out of the Darkness”

Though husband-and-wife songwriting team Daniel and Jenna Watters have spent the past half decade in Austin, their flow of Americana-soul dates back to the early 2010s. The Watters‘ evolving stream of retro-style rock and contemporary funk sounds has decidedly bubbled up since their time here with the addition of a five-piece backing band, complete with a horn section.

Following the release of their LPĀ IntuitionĀ at the top of 2021, The Watters celebrate their ten-year anniversary tomorrow night at The Belmont. The music kicks off at 7:30pm and the suggested illumination of gold attire should help you crawl “Out of the Darkness” of pandemic or political unrest and glisten against The Watters’ soulful tides.