By Eric McKeefer
Local Music Journalist
Artist: Andy Pickett
Album: Andy Pickett
Release Date: November 24, 2017
On March 16, Andy Pickett played at The Electric Church for their unofficial SXSW showcase. I had never seen or heard his music before, but I was absolutely blown away by his performance. With a band featuring a three piece brass section, two guitars, bass and drums, Pickett sang lead and rocked the electric piano. During his performance on the inside stage, Pickett got the room moving with his hit Paid, and kept the dance floor grooving with hip-hop inspired drum beats, and fat funky bass lines. Beautifully full piano chords and quick up-beat guitar strums accent the beat while the warming brass harmonies support the vocal melody lines. For me, Pickett’s performance was a breath of fresh air in the whirlwind of SXSW. His beautiful arrangements, lovable and honest stage presence were the most memorable performance of SXSW I saw this year, followed closely by The Halfways’ performance at Spider House on the 13th.
Since I saw Andy Pickett, I have been bumpin’ his self-titled album on Spotify nearly everyday. In the studio, Pickett adds nicely used vocal delays and synth lines to his jazzy-disco-soul-pop. One my favorites, Floral works out that mid-week stress knot with soulful lyrics and a horn line reminiscent of the late Charles Barkley. Taking it back to the roots, Forever Is On My Mind rocks the early 60s soul-pop drum beat and piano play, then evaporates into a washed out distant sax solo, and is thrown right back into the groove for one more chorus. Mixed in with the ballads Alberta and Who Knows the Snow, the undeniable bangers Jiu Jitsu and If You Don’t get funky with smackin’ rhythm sections and ear grabbing synth/guitar leads. Definitely keep an eye out for upcoming performances and check out his self-titled album on the web.