Terri Hendrix



 

When we last checked into the intrepid folk music hero, Terri Hendrix, she was releasing the first record in a 5 part project she was calling, simply, Project 5. She recently released the final music in an EP, the album Talk To A Human, and a book. I haven’t read the book, but the album fulfills much of the vision Hendrix had for creating a larger canvas than a single record could provide.

 

Like an enormous wall mural, Project 5 can be appreciated from a distance in its entirety, or you can walk up close and immerse yourself in a detailed piece. I’d probably argue Talk To A Human is most diverse of the elements (at least the musical ones) in the whole. But frankly, pick up any of the full length records, Talk To A Human, Slaughterhouse, or Love You Strong, and you’ll hear immediately why Hendrix has such an avid and well-deserved fan base.

— Shawn Underwood 

 

An inveterate genre jumper, on the mostly Americana 5.3, she goes Latin in “Mi Madre,” pays tribute to the pioneering female fighter pilots of World War II in “WASP,” covers Guy Clark, Cindy Walker, Woody Guthrie, and the legendary blues duo Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhee, and tackles such issues as alcoholism, body image, and family dysfunction. And she even makes it all rhyme."    

— Mike Greenblatt  

TERRI HENDRIX

Talk To A Human

Self-Released, 2019

8/10

Listen to Talk To A Human

 

Generally, when an artist releases much music in a short period, the quality of the work varies greatly. However, when Terri Hendrix does it, there is little variance- it’s all top notch.

On Talk To A Human, the songstress hovers around folk, Americana and roots, and addresses the trouble communication has become in our all to dependency on technology.

The title track starts the listen with warm Americana and folk melodies, as Hendrix’s mix of talking and singing gives the tune a unique angle, and “Mi Madre” follows with horns that inject some Latin flavor into the playful tune.

Elsewhere, “Don’t Meddle In My Mood” offers plucky bass and an old time feel in the soul venture, while “Worthy” recruits country spirit into the charming storytelling.

Near the end, “The Dark”, a Guy Clark cover, flows with a poetic delivery of the classic, and “I Hear Your Song” ends the listen with breezy melodies and a timelessness that will be relevant for decades to come.

 

Hendrix is in fine company here, as her band contributes fiddles, pedal steel, banjo and other graceful noisemakers, and the songs unfold with a universal appeal that resonates with a comfortable familiarity and insightful thoughtfulness."

Take Effect

Terri Hendrix has gotten ahold of something uncannily original down there in Texas and integrated it into a remarkably unique blend of spoken word Texas country music. You’ve never heard anything quite like her innovative rhythmic style, and on top of that, this song showcases her phenomenal harmonica skills. It’s fast-paced, recognizably folksy good music, but it’s also done with the most contemporary of lyrical deliveries, including a hip hop – inspired, breathy dog background vocal. All combined in one potent, reality relationship song.

— Melissa Clarke Americana Highways 

Song Premier

Over her 50-year career, Country Music Hall of Famer Cindy Walker penned songs that would become standards for artists such as Gene Autry, Eddy Arnold, Ray Charles, Bob Wills and The Texas Playboys, Roy Orbison and more. She should be on anyone's short list of Lone Star state music legends. But, as Terri Hendrix points out, that acknowledgment has all too often went to men. "The men get the winning cup and all the glory when it comes to songwriting here in Texas," Hendrix tells Wide Open Country. "Van Zandt, Clark, Earle, Shaver and on and on. What about the women? Case in point, Cindy Walker. A native Texan, she was a true craftsman, and often tailored particular songs to specific recording artists. She had Top 10 hits that spread over five decades." Hendrix, a revered Texas singer-songwriter in her own right, honors Walker on her forthcoming album Project 5.3: Talk To a Human by covering Walker's jazzy "Don't Meddle in My Mood," an ode to being sullen in peace. "Another reason why I covered this song is because I can totally relate to it and this country blues style is among my favorites to sing," Hendrix says. "When I'm in a funk, I like to be left alone. I don't like advice or anyone around me trying to 'fix me.'  This might be a love gone wrong song, but for me, it has always had a deeper meaning."

Rich Reardin on Beyond a Song is live online!

A couple of years ago, San Marcos-based singer and songwriter Terri Hendrix hatched an ambitious plan for her “Project 5,” a series of albums and written documents that she would release over the course of a year. The pace of releasing these projects slowed down a little because Hendrix is a writer of great nuance and detail. Rather than rushing out the final few volumes, she took her time and brought the experiment to completion. And the final volumes are worth the wait. “Project 5.4” is an electronic-minded recording she and producer/guitarist/friend Lloyd Mains made from loops they’d recorded, and “Project 5.5” is a memoir about her life and career, which covers her grassroots success in Texas and beyond, as well as a physical condition that causes seizures. Zooming out, her undertaking is a stunning offering of creativity and art, and she’s finally brought the whole thing home.

— Houston Chronicle  

Buddy Magazine 

 

 

Read Here 

Terri Hendrix has gotten ahold of something uncannily original down there in Texas and integrated it into a remarkably unique blend of spoken word Texas country music. You’ve never heard anything quite like her innovative rhythmic style, and on top of that, this song showcases her phenomenal harmonica skills. It’s fast-paced, recognizably folksy good music, but it’s also done with the most contemporary of lyrical deliveries, including a hip hop – inspired, breathy dog background vocal. All combined in one potent, reality relationship song.

— Richard L'Hommideau Making a Scene 

Making a Scene 

 

Listen Here 

Texas Music Magazine, Fall 2019

 

The “Renaissance Woman” from Texas is back. The title track fights the “phone tree”

August 26, 2019

Format: MP3 Music

5 Stars (out of 5 stars) 

Texas-based singer Songwriter Terri Hendrix is a true “renaissance woman”. She writes great songs, plays a variety of music, sings, write books and runs a non-profit education center in San Marcos, TX. She sets lofty goals and makes them.A few years ago she set up a multimedia project – titled “Project 5” to release four CDs and a book by 2019. This June she got it finished though I just learned about – and got the last two CDs and have not yet seen the book. I did review the first two CDs though and loved them. Unfortunately Amazon is not handling the physical CDs (one – “Who Is Ann?” - is an EP with five tracks) and only the MP3 version. But, though my policy is to review only physicals – I have the digipak version – I’m making an exception here. Since I got it last week, I have had it on “repeat” in my CD player – another thing I RARELY do. It’s that good. The title (and led-off track) is my favorite. If you’ve tried to call a corporation and found yourself in the infamous “phone tree”, Hendrix has your back. Just hang up and sing along to the song. There are 10 more wonderful tracks here too and every one has Hendrix’s writing and performing partner, Lloyd Maines, playing a variety of NINE different instruments (guitar,s, mandolin, uke, banjo bass, pedal steel and even a papoose! Others join in too. There are a few covers here too (most by Texans): Guy Clark’s “The Dark”, Cindy Walker’s “Don’t Meddle in My Mood” and the Billy Bragg/Woody Guthrie “Way Over Yonder in A Monor Key”. Hendrix even creates a rap to match the choruses of a Sonny Terry/Brownie McGhee tune. If you know Hendrix’s music (all on her own Wilory Records label) you’ll want this. If she’s new to you, just sample the “human” track and I think you’ll want the whole album.

I hope you found this review both informative and helpful.

Steve Ramm

“Anything Phonographic”

TERRI HENDRIX/Talk to a Human Project 5.3: Hendrix has been indie from day one but here we find her and producer Lloyd Maines going even indie from themselves with a set that's like nothing you would ever expect from the Austin/Nashville axis---no matter how many old roads pop up. Part of what was supposed to be a year long, multi part series until life got in the way, this edition that focuses on the difficulty of real communication in the modern world is nothing nearly as dry as that description would suggest. Incredibly personal, incredibly musical and totally well written, this set that colors so far outside the lines follows in the footsteps of John Stewart's later ambient/industrial/electronic works that were miles away from folk music but still brought you home again. Call it what you will but it's an incredible win for indie music for adults and people that need real music that speaks to them. 

(Wilory 30016) 

TERRI HENDRIX/Who is Ann? Project 5.4: There's no dust on producer Lloyd Maines here on this experimental set that shows he's a man for all seasons--including ones that haven't arrived yet. A tough little set about kicking depression and tough times in the pants and moving on, this little ep could put a passel of self help publishers out of business if the word on it spread. Do your part! A real ear and brain opener that takes Hendrix to the places she's always dreamed of. 

(Wilory 30017) 

TERRI HENDRIX

Talk to a Human (Project 5.3)

Who Is Ann? (Project 5.4)

Wilory Records

When all is sung and done, it doesn’t matter a whit that Terri Hendrix didn’t quite meet her original, self-imposed all-in-one-year deadline for her ambitious “Project 5.” What counts is that she had the stones to commit to such an undertaking — four thematically linked albums and a book — in the first place, and that she doggedly stayed the course over what turned out to be a nearly four-year-long marathon. At the time of this writing, Hendrix was still in the home stretch of writing her book, a memoir titled The Girl with the Exploding Brain detailing her long battle with epilepsy. But with the simultaneous release of Talk to a Human and Who is Ann?, she finishes the music leg of her “Project 5” journey not “better late than never,” but strong. 

Despite their sequential subtitles (Project 5.3 and 5.4), these aren’t really “sequels” necessarily reliant on each other (or their “Project 5” predecessors, for that matter) to make sense. Like the first two albums in the series, 2016’s Love You Strong and The Slaughterhouse Sessions, both Talk to a Human and Who is Ann? easily hold up as standalone projects in their own right. Talk to a Human is the most quintessentially “Terri” album out of the whole bunch, with it’s spry mix of folk, pop, blues, cocktail jazz, and even a splash of mambo (Tex-Mex style) rivaling the vibrant, genre-blurring spectrum of 2010’s Cry Till You Laugh and even the playful free spirit of 1998’s Wilory Farm — albeit refracted through the lens of a woman 21 years older, wiser, and bolder. That boldness comes even more into focus on Who is Ann?, a five-song EP that indulges (in the best sense of the word) Hendrix’s closet obsession with electronic music and proves as much of a revelation as the first time she decided to get dead serious about playing her blues harp. As on Talk to a Human, her longtime collaborator Lloyd Maines is credited as co-producer, but its telling that the EP’s three most experimental, loop and sample-infused tracks were all recorded by “Ann” (Hendrix’s middle name) herself, solo — making it arguably the most intimate and purely DIY music she’s ever released.

 

And yet, as distinctive and self-contained as each individual album in the series may be, the myriad ties that bind them as parts of a bigger whole are undeniable — and hearing them in that context reveals just how much artful design was invested in the project from the start. In her own “big picture” summation, Hendrix cites “love, hope, and resilience” as the three primary themes explored across “Project 5,” but conviction, courage, and an acute awareness of time (alternately fleeting and precious and seemingly interminable) are all recurring motifs as well. And there’s a real sense of rhyme and rhythm in the way the albums all fit together, too. The speed-rapped “Talk to a Human” kicks its namesake record (aka Project 5.3) off on a bracing, restless note not unlike the urgent surge of “Feel the Time,” the opening track on Love You Strong (Project 5.1), while the languid, slow-motion chill of the Slaughterhouse (5.2)-opening “The News” is echoed at the start of Who is Ann? in the hauntingly mesmeric (and unabashedly sensuous) fever dream of “Drive.” There are also several songs — carefully chosen covers by the likes of Cindy Walker, Guy Clark, and Woody Guthrie included — that directly riff and play off of each other lyrically, like conversations carried over from album to album. Some of those conversations are harmonious duets, like Talk to a Human's “WASP,” a salute to the little-heralded Women Airforce Service Pilots of World War II, and Love You Strong's “Texas Star” tribute to Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Liz Carpenter, and Molly Ivins. But others are fraught with tension, with songs that seem to directly challenge or even undermine each other: love vs. loss, resilience vs. vulnerability, hope vs. despair. And — spoiler — it’s not always the better angels that get the last word. Who Is Ann? ends on the devastating note of “Grieve,” which finds an utterly disconsolate Hendrix adrift in mourning for her sister, who passed away unexpectedly in 2018. “Tell me where to go from here, tell me how to plan for tomorrow,” she pleads, flailing desperately for the kind of inner strength and peace she sang so assuredly about back on Love You Strong's uplifting “Found.” “Tell me how to do the things I must in spite of all the sorrow.” But the waves pulling her further out to sea offer no succor, and the way she sings the line “I’m still here” sounds a lot more like weary and bewildered resignation than resiliency.

 

If you think that sounds out of character for Hendrix, the perpetually beaming human sunflower in overalls who sings feel-good songs about being of “The Spiritual Kind” and whose live performances typically end with her giving out hugs by the dozens and being swarmed by kids wanting to sign her mandolin, well, maybe you’ve just been missing the big picture all along. Because although the message and energy she consciously projects to the world usually swings more yang than yin, the fact is every album she’s ever made — that 2006 kids’ record, Celebrate the Difference, included — has had plenty of dark somewhere in the mix . Sometimes it’s there even within her most buoyant of songs, like Talk to a Human's “Choice,” hiding in plain sight right between the lines — or, in the case of the Latin-flared, knockout tour de force “Mi Madre” that precedes it on the record, sung on the sly in Spanish. But often as not, across the span of her whole catalog and especially throughout the four albums of “Project 5” (and undoubtedly in the book still to come), when Hendrix writes about the dark, she faces it head-on, even when she’d rather not. It’s just the way she’s she’s always been wired as an artist; as she sings with matter-of-fact acceptance in Talk to a Human's exquisite “I Hear Your Song,” “We see things we can’t unsee / we feel more than we should.” And though Hendrix herself may not see or feel the kind of chin-forward, leaning-into-the-wind courage and conviction she yearns for in Who is Ann's “Woman” when she looks in the mirror, anyone really listening to her songs will hear both in spades. 

— RICHARD SKANSE

Venerable Texas musician and songwriter Terri Hendrix has explored various aspects of her chosen art over the twenty years since she first came to my attention with Places In Between. Most recently she has been focused upon examining human connection through a series of releases, Project 5. 

 

The latest installments, Talk To A Human (a full album) and Who Is Ann? (a five-song EP) bring us to a version of Terri Hendrix we might not have expected, but which is certainly welcome. 

The music of Project 5.3 Talk To A Human is generous in its breadth; much like each of us, it is no one thing, one shade or texture. 

We have uplifting, original anthems (“Choice,” “I Hear Your Song”) and pointed covers (“Way Over Yonder in the Minor Key,” Billy Bragg and Wilco; Cindy Walker’s “Don’t Meddle in My Mood;’ and Guy Clark’s immortal “The Dark,” previously included on the tribute album, This One’s For Him- don’t tell Guy, but I like Terri’s version every bit as much as his) beside a Latin folk, rap-infused number (“Mi Madre”) and a Janis Ian-ish, personal testament of our inability to connect (“Talk to a Human”). More typical Americana, songwriter fare is just as engaging, with “Worthy” and “WASP” being additional favourites. 

 

Working again with Lloyd Maines, who appears busier than usual even by his standards this year, Hendrix refuses to let circumstances overcome her, fighting inertia at every turn. She does her own damn thing, and we love her because of it.

Who Is Ann? stands apart, a complementary companion-piece of challenge and experimentation where Hendrix examines spoken-word poetry (Minton Sparksesque) and electronica-based, percussive instrumentation using loops and effects. The ‘strangeness’ of this approach is enduring: that an established artist continues to push herself to areas that may leave some challenged is an appreciated trait. That the single-word entitled pieces (songs doesn’t really do them justice) are each timely, intriguing, and individually precious further elevates Hendrix’s standing. A seventeen-minute master class in pushing through personal expectations.

— Donald Teplyske of Fervor Coulee 

REVIEW: Terri Hendrix’ “Who Is Ann?” Is Spoken Word Country Electronica

Project 5.4 EP, Who is Ann? from Terri Hendrix presents “a collection of songs where the music is infused with vocal percussion and lyrics to create a mood that addresses depression from profound loss, and the steely reserve to move forward and grab the light.” Who is Ann? deemed Project 5.4 sets the stage for its sister project Project 5.5 both to be released in September; clearly Hendrix has words and wisdom a plenty to share.

“Drive,” the record opener, is blend of spoken word, 80’s keyboards, electronic beats, and mournful pedal steel courtesy of Lloyd Maines as it wrestles with perennial country themes of love and loss. “It’s a long lonesome drive here without you,” she sings before slipping into spoken word tale that takes listeners down an empty dirt road of a broken heart. The record is infused with quality performances by Terri Hendrix (vocals, harmony vocals, loops, and samples), Lloyd Maines (acoustic, electric guitars, pedal steel, percussion, mandolin, papoose, bass guitar and ukulele), Pat Manske (keypads), and Drew Womack (harmony vocals).

The second track, “Happy,” mixes samples of “homophobic religious zealots, hypocrites, mean-spirited politicians, and radio and television anomalies” with programmed beats and ukulele that offer padding to her rap about the lack of social cohesion promoted by the sampled voices, “why can’t everybody be happy happy, why can’t everybody get along.” She repeats the refrain, “the ratings go up,” condemning capitalistic greed that drives division. “Move” professes that the best cure for depression is to get up and move, “when you’re feeling bad, when you’re feeling blue, when you need to get back up, all you got to do is move…move your body, it’ll be alright”; simple wisdom presented with a funhouse bounce. Arabian instrumentation pulses through “Woman” with papoose and dance beat interplay.

 

Gone are any country flourishes on “Woman” where Hendrix’s spoken word dominates as she examines the nature of what she calls “women champions.” On the EP’s final track, “Grieve,” Hendrix turns to the very private and yet wholly universal trials of close personal loss. Hendrix is extremely open about the impetus for “Grieve”; in her press release she writes, “I lost my sister, Tammi Hendrix, at 6:42 p.m. on March 8, 2018. Her death was the direct result of a combination of both alcoholism and remaining in a dysfunctional relationship. She became isolated from those who could have helped her. I still grieve for my sister like a wounded animal. The waves come in and I find myself back in the ocean. That’s why there are samples of the ocean in this track. The breathy vocal bursts are deliberate, and signify being unable to breath during the grieving process.” Piano buoys Hendrix plaintive lyrics as she attempts to move on, “tell me how to plan for tomorrow, tell me how to do the things I must despite all the sorrow.” “Grieve” closes with a swell of emotion as a single haunting guitar line slinks in between scenes and crashing waves.

 

On Who is Ann? Terri Hendrix finds new ways to confront timeless tribulations while maintaining her rural roots in this innovative collection.  

 — H. R. Gertner

TERRI HENDRIX

TALK TO A HUMAN (PROJECT 5.3)

WHO IS ANN ( PROJECT 5.4)

 

 

Terri Hendrix is a brilliant poet/singer/guitarist/composer that came up with what turned out to be an ambitious project, indeed.  It began in early 2016, with the release of the folk-centric “Love You Strong (Project 5.1)”, followed in the fall of that same year with the more-bluesy “The Slaughterhouse Sessions (Project 5.2)”.  She intended to continue with two more albums and a companion-piece book, but, as is usually the case, life gets in the way.  A series of health battles plus the tragic loss of her sister pushed everything onto the back burner, until now.  This project now finds itself completed, with the release of “Talk To A Human (Project 5.3),” and “Who Is Ann? (Project 5.4),” as well as the accompanying book, “The Girl With The Exploding Brain (Project 5.5).”  The book is Terri’s autobiography that chronicles her struggles to cope with a seizure disorder while juggling her career as a musician.  We will, of course, concentrate on the musical side of things.

 

Project 5.3 opens with the title cut, Acoustic guitar leads drive our heroine’s tale of today’s Big Brother-dominated society, where, sometimes, all you wanna really do is “Talk To A Human!”  Producer Lloyd Maines’ banjo gives this one a down-home touch, too.  A Latin-tinged horn section fuels Terri’s coming-of-age ode, “Mi Madre,” while she gets downright bluesy with our two favorites on this set.  She’s on harp on both of ’em, and, first up, she gets all Memphis Minnie on us when she’s “without that baby of mine,” a cool read of Cindy Walker’s “Don’t Meddle In My Mood.”    Next up, Lloyd’s dobro over Terri’s sprightly vocals sho’ nuff brings the blues back around on a sweet re-working of Sonny and Brownie’s “Dogging Me.”

Project 5.4, “Who Is Ann,” is a tribute to Terri’s sister.  It is a sometimes-somber, sometimes light-hearted look at dealing with that loss and seeking the light of healing in the end.  The songs have only one-word titles, and they open with the tight harmonies of “it’s a long, lonesome Drive without you,” with the backing vocals from Drew Womack.  The set closes with the ethereal story of “I’m still here, in the dark,” and is entitled “Grieve.”

 

We see it on a regular basis within the pages of this humble forum.  Great artists take their own personal losses and struggles and set them to some outstanding music that not only cleanses their soul, but affords the listener an excellent and varied musical experience as well.  Enjoy Terri Hendrix and “Talk To A Human” and “Who Is Ann?”  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow, The Nashville Blues And Roots Alliance.

— Don Crow 

The OYOU & Project 5

Exploring Americana Music: Four Albums

Depending on which song you are listening to, you might think of Terri Hendrix as a jazz singer, a rockabilly artist, a country musician, or place her some other genre entirely. Her range of interests are as wide as her native state of Texas, and she’s the chops to execute them all with courage and originality. Her music can be gentle and thoughtful as well as lively and outspoken. She is also a fiercely independent artist, having worked out a crowd funding model and started her own label long before such business models were common.

 

Her recent project is a two parter, comprising a full length album called Talk to a Human and an EP called Who is Ann? A mix of originals and well chosen covers, Talk to a Human’s title track was came about after she read an article about a space craft exploring the planet Mercury, and began wonder what such an exploration might show about Earth. Hendrix’s country side comes out in her cover of Cindy Walker’s Don’t Meddle in My Mood. In addition to being a singer who well knows how and when to nuance a story with her voice, Hendrix is also a fine guitar and harmonica player, skills you will enjoy hearing her put to use on both these recordings. WASP is a tribute members of the women’s air corps during World War II, while the piece Grieve from Who Is Ann? allows threads of hope to rise through its sadness. You’ll want to explore the other places Hendrix travels on these recordings, including the affirmation in I Hear Your Song and a lovely version of the traditional song The Water is Wide.

— Kerry Dexter

Take Effect

TERRI HENDRIX

Project 5.4: Who Is Ann?

Self-Released, 2019

8/10

Listen to Project 5.4: Who Is Ann?

Terri Hendrix has had a busy year, with several releases that, although stylistically different, all share the common thread of her atypical and high creative song craft.

This installment, the Who Is Ann EP, sits closest to electronica, where loops, samples and talking are all part of the artistic and adventurous template.

“Drive” starts the listen vocally strong with warm harmonies as the music resides close to Americana with timeless folk storytelling as Hendrix injects spoken word, and “Happy” then steers right into electronica and poetry from Hendrix in the feel good tune that isn’t short on grooves.

 

The last 3 tunes are just as interesting, and include the playful percussion and sweet strumming of “Move”, which will certainly get your body moving, as well as the culturally strong and beat driven “Woman”, where hushed vocals run alongside the frisky tempo. “Grieve” ends the EP with emotive singing and soft, agile musicianship in the orchestral and piano heavy exit.

Although it may seem odd to use pedal steel and mandolin alongside ‘80s indebted keys, Hendrix and company do a fine job here while addressing weighty issues, both personal and political. An extremely prolific songwriter as of lately, Hendrix continues to produce all substance and no flash with her timeless, relevant art.

— Tom Haugen 

Various



"Terri Hendrix is a native Texan and a lifelong resident of the state. She's well steeped in the state's independent way of taking on and creating musical traditions. She's run her own label since before that was a common, or cool, thing to do, and she's created a non profit arts center OYOU (an acronym for Own Your Own Universe). For her album Slaughterhouse Sessions, Hendrix draws mainly on the folk blues/ gospel range of tradition, creating original songs that speak of faith and struggle and triumph hewed from day to day life and served up in a voice and with a musical style that perfectly suits the silk meets burlap edge to the songs. Most songs are collaborations with long time musical cohort Lloyd Maines, with a few well chosen covers added in. Henrdrix's distinctive voice and the pulsing rhythm she and Maines create run through all the music. Listen out for Troubles on Your Mind, One of These Mornings, and a fine take on A.P. Carter's Sun of the Soul. Listen out for more from Hendrix, too: this is the second part of a five part project Hendrix is creating." — Kerry Dexter 



"Terri Hendrix may not be mainstream, but she's a thought provoking artist who crafts beautiful music." - Ken Murray KTTX/KWHI


Project 5.1 Love You Strong  2/5/16

The 1st album in the Project 5 series. 

— Hector Saldana 



 

 

"It takes an almost brutally honest songwriter to say “I wish the holidays brought out the best in me, these days are hard to spend with my family.” There’s a lot of variety, The Rant is frankly self-assertive (“I’d bet on me to win if I were you”), Texas Star, with Eliza Gilkyson harmonies, celebrates Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivens and Liz Carpenter, Calle De Los Niños describes the funeral of a Mexican child lost to violence, Fifty Shades Of Hey showcases Hendrix’s sense of humor and Mingulay Boat Song is an arrangement of a 30s Gaelic song, but I keep circling back to the sensational title track, “I wish you could trust me, I wish you could lose your doubt, the second-guessing I could do without.” If she keeps this standard up for the next three albums, Project 5 will be a landmark in Texas music."

— John Conquest Third Coast Music  







Rootstime.be has been translated to English. For the original review, please click on image of review. 


Terri Hendrix has gotten ahold of something uncannily original down there in Texas and integrated it into a remarkably unique blend of spoken word Texas country music. You’ve never heard anything quite like her innovative rhythmic style, and on top of that, this song showcases her phenomenal harmonica skills. It’s fast-paced, recognizably folksy good music, but it’s also done with the most contemporary of lyrical deliveries, including a hip hop – inspired, breathy dog background vocal. All combined in one potent, reality relationship song.

— Melissa Clarke Americana Highways 

Song Premier

Over her 50-year career, Country Music Hall of Famer Cindy Walker penned songs that would become standards for artists such as Gene Autry, Eddy Arnold, Ray Charles, Bob Wills and The Texas Playboys, Roy Orbison and more. She should be on anyone's short list of Lone Star state music legends. But, as Terri Hendrix points out, that acknowledgment has all too often went to men. "The men get the winning cup and all the glory when it comes to songwriting here in Texas," Hendrix tells Wide Open Country. "Van Zandt, Clark, Earle, Shaver and on and on. What about the women? Case in point, Cindy Walker. A native Texan, she was a true craftsman, and often tailored particular songs to specific recording artists. She had Top 10 hits that spread over five decades." Hendrix, a revered Texas singer-songwriter in her own right, honors Walker on her forthcoming album Project 5.3: Talk To a Human by covering Walker's jazzy "Don't Meddle in My Mood," an ode to being sullen in peace. "Another reason why I covered this song is because I can totally relate to it and this country blues style is among my favorites to sing," Hendrix says. "When I'm in a funk, I like to be left alone. I don't like advice or anyone around me trying to 'fix me.'  This might be a love gone wrong song, but for me, it has always had a deeper meaning."

Rich Reardin on Beyond a Song is live online!

A couple of years ago, San Marcos-based singer and songwriter Terri Hendrix hatched an ambitious plan for her “Project 5,” a series of albums and written documents that she would release over the course of a year. The pace of releasing these projects slowed down a little because Hendrix is a writer of great nuance and detail. Rather than rushing out the final few volumes, she took her time and brought the experiment to completion. And the final volumes are worth the wait. “Project 5.4” is an electronic-minded recording she and producer/guitarist/friend Lloyd Mains made from loops they’d recorded, and “Project 5.5” is a memoir about her life and career, which covers her grassroots success in Texas and beyond, as well as a physical condition that causes seizures. Zooming out, her undertaking is a stunning offering of creativity and art, and she’s finally brought the whole thing home.

— Houston Chronicle  

Buddy Magazine 

 

 

Read Here 

Terri Hendrix has gotten ahold of something uncannily original down there in Texas and integrated it into a remarkably unique blend of spoken word Texas country music. You’ve never heard anything quite like her innovative rhythmic style, and on top of that, this song showcases her phenomenal harmonica skills. It’s fast-paced, recognizably folksy good music, but it’s also done with the most contemporary of lyrical deliveries, including a hip hop – inspired, breathy dog background vocal. All combined in one potent, reality relationship song.

— Richard L'Hommideau Making a Scene 

Making a Scene 

 

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The “Renaissance Woman” from Texas is back. The title track fights the “phone tree”

August 26, 2019

Format: MP3 Music

5 Stars (out of 5 stars) 

Texas-based singer Songwriter Terri Hendrix is a true “renaissance woman”. She writes great songs, plays a variety of music, sings, write books and runs a non-profit education center in San Marcos, TX. She sets lofty goals and makes them.A few years ago she set up a multimedia project – titled “Project 5” to release four CDs and a book by 2019. This June she got it finished though I just learned about – and got the last two CDs and have not yet seen the book. I did review the first two CDs though and loved them. Unfortunately Amazon is not handling the physical CDs (one – “Who Is Ann?” - is an EP with five tracks) and only the MP3 version. But, though my policy is to review only physicals – I have the digipak version – I’m making an exception here. Since I got it last week, I have had it on “repeat” in my CD player – another thing I RARELY do. It’s that good. The title (and led-off track) is my favorite. If you’ve tried to call a corporation and found yourself in the infamous “phone tree”, Hendrix has your back. Just hang up and sing along to the song. There are 10 more wonderful tracks here too and every one has Hendrix’s writing and performing partner, Lloyd Maines, playing a variety of NINE different instruments (guitar,s, mandolin, uke, banjo bass, pedal steel and even a papoose! Others join in too. There are a few covers here too (most by Texans): Guy Clark’s “The Dark”, Cindy Walker’s “Don’t Meddle in My Mood” and the Billy Bragg/Woody Guthrie “Way Over Yonder in A Monor Key”. Hendrix even creates a rap to match the choruses of a Sonny Terry/Brownie McGhee tune. If you know Hendrix’s music (all on her own Wilory Records label) you’ll want this. If she’s new to you, just sample the “human” track and I think you’ll want the whole album.

I hope you found this review both informative and helpful.

Steve Ramm

“Anything Phonographic”

TERRI HENDRIX/Talk to a Human Project 5.3: Hendrix has been indie from day one but here we find her and producer Lloyd Maines going even indie from themselves with a set that's like nothing you would ever expect from the Austin/Nashville axis---no matter how many old roads pop up. Part of what was supposed to be a year long, multi part series until life got in the way, this edition that focuses on the difficulty of real communication in the modern world is nothing nearly as dry as that description would suggest. Incredibly personal, incredibly musical and totally well written, this set that colors so far outside the lines follows in the footsteps of John Stewart's later ambient/industrial/electronic works that were miles away from folk music but still brought you home again. Call it what you will but it's an incredible win for indie music for adults and people that need real music that speaks to them. 

(Wilory 30016) 

TERRI HENDRIX/Who is Ann? Project 5.4: There's no dust on producer Lloyd Maines here on this experimental set that shows he's a man for all seasons--including ones that haven't arrived yet. A tough little set about kicking depression and tough times in the pants and moving on, this little ep could put a passel of self help publishers out of business if the word on it spread. Do your part! A real ear and brain opener that takes Hendrix to the places she's always dreamed of. 

(Wilory 30017) 

TERRI HENDRIX

Talk to a Human (Project 5.3)

Who Is Ann? (Project 5.4)

Wilory Records

When all is sung and done, it doesn’t matter a whit that Terri Hendrix didn’t quite meet her original, self-imposed all-in-one-year deadline for her ambitious “Project 5.” What counts is that she had the stones to commit to such an undertaking — four thematically linked albums and a book — in the first place, and that she doggedly stayed the course over what turned out to be a nearly four-year-long marathon. At the time of this writing, Hendrix was still in the home stretch of writing her book, a memoir titled The Girl with the Exploding Brain detailing her long battle with epilepsy. But with the simultaneous release of Talk to a Human and Who is Ann?, she finishes the music leg of her “Project 5” journey not “better late than never,” but strong. 

Despite their sequential subtitles (Project 5.3 and 5.4), these aren’t really “sequels” necessarily reliant on each other (or their “Project 5” predecessors, for that matter) to make sense. Like the first two albums in the series, 2016’s Love You Strong and The Slaughterhouse Sessions, both Talk to a Human and Who is Ann? easily hold up as standalone projects in their own right. Talk to a Human is the most quintessentially “Terri” album out of the whole bunch, with it’s spry mix of folk, pop, blues, cocktail jazz, and even a splash of mambo (Tex-Mex style) rivaling the vibrant, genre-blurring spectrum of 2010’s Cry Till You Laugh and even the playful free spirit of 1998’s Wilory Farm — albeit refracted through the lens of a woman 21 years older, wiser, and bolder. That boldness comes even more into focus on Who is Ann?, a five-song EP that indulges (in the best sense of the word) Hendrix’s closet obsession with electronic music and proves as much of a revelation as the first time she decided to get dead serious about playing her blues harp. As on Talk to a Human, her longtime collaborator Lloyd Maines is credited as co-producer, but its telling that the EP’s three most experimental, loop and sample-infused tracks were all recorded by “Ann” (Hendrix’s middle name) herself, solo — making it arguably the most intimate and purely DIY music she’s ever released.

 

And yet, as distinctive and self-contained as each individual album in the series may be, the myriad ties that bind them as parts of a bigger whole are undeniable — and hearing them in that context reveals just how much artful design was invested in the project from the start. In her own “big picture” summation, Hendrix cites “love, hope, and resilience” as the three primary themes explored across “Project 5,” but conviction, courage, and an acute awareness of time (alternately fleeting and precious and seemingly interminable) are all recurring motifs as well. And there’s a real sense of rhyme and rhythm in the way the albums all fit together, too. The speed-rapped “Talk to a Human” kicks its namesake record (aka Project 5.3) off on a bracing, restless note not unlike the urgent surge of “Feel the Time,” the opening track on Love You Strong (Project 5.1), while the languid, slow-motion chill of the Slaughterhouse (5.2)-opening “The News” is echoed at the start of Who is Ann? in the hauntingly mesmeric (and unabashedly sensuous) fever dream of “Drive.” There are also several songs — carefully chosen covers by the likes of Cindy Walker, Guy Clark, and Woody Guthrie included — that directly riff and play off of each other lyrically, like conversations carried over from album to album. Some of those conversations are harmonious duets, like Talk to a Human's “WASP,” a salute to the little-heralded Women Airforce Service Pilots of World War II, and Love You Strong's “Texas Star” tribute to Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Liz Carpenter, and Molly Ivins. But others are fraught with tension, with songs that seem to directly challenge or even undermine each other: love vs. loss, resilience vs. vulnerability, hope vs. despair. And — spoiler — it’s not always the better angels that get the last word. Who Is Ann? ends on the devastating note of “Grieve,” which finds an utterly disconsolate Hendrix adrift in mourning for her sister, who passed away unexpectedly in 2018. “Tell me where to go from here, tell me how to plan for tomorrow,” she pleads, flailing desperately for the kind of inner strength and peace she sang so assuredly about back on Love You Strong's uplifting “Found.” “Tell me how to do the things I must in spite of all the sorrow.” But the waves pulling her further out to sea offer no succor, and the way she sings the line “I’m still here” sounds a lot more like weary and bewildered resignation than resiliency.

 

If you think that sounds out of character for Hendrix, the perpetually beaming human sunflower in overalls who sings feel-good songs about being of “The Spiritual Kind” and whose live performances typically end with her giving out hugs by the dozens and being swarmed by kids wanting to sign her mandolin, well, maybe you’ve just been missing the big picture all along. Because although the message and energy she consciously projects to the world usually swings more yang than yin, the fact is every album she’s ever made — that 2006 kids’ record, Celebrate the Difference, included — has had plenty of dark somewhere in the mix . Sometimes it’s there even within her most buoyant of songs, like Talk to a Human's “Choice,” hiding in plain sight right between the lines — or, in the case of the Latin-flared, knockout tour de force “Mi Madre” that precedes it on the record, sung on the sly in Spanish. But often as not, across the span of her whole catalog and especially throughout the four albums of “Project 5” (and undoubtedly in the book still to come), when Hendrix writes about the dark, she faces it head-on, even when she’d rather not. It’s just the way she’s she’s always been wired as an artist; as she sings with matter-of-fact acceptance in Talk to a Human's exquisite “I Hear Your Song,” “We see things we can’t unsee / we feel more than we should.” And though Hendrix herself may not see or feel the kind of chin-forward, leaning-into-the-wind courage and conviction she yearns for in Who is Ann's “Woman” when she looks in the mirror, anyone really listening to her songs will hear both in spades. 

— RICHARD SKANSE

Venerable Texas musician and songwriter Terri Hendrix has explored various aspects of her chosen art over the twenty years since she first came to my attention with Places In Between. Most recently she has been focused upon examining human connection through a series of releases, Project 5. 

 

The latest installments, Talk To A Human (a full album) and Who Is Ann? (a five-song EP) bring us to a version of Terri Hendrix we might not have expected, but which is certainly welcome. 

The music of Project 5.3 Talk To A Human is generous in its breadth; much like each of us, it is no one thing, one shade or texture. 

We have uplifting, original anthems (“Choice,” “I Hear Your Song”) and pointed covers (“Way Over Yonder in the Minor Key,” Billy Bragg and Wilco; Cindy Walker’s “Don’t Meddle in My Mood;’ and Guy Clark’s immortal “The Dark,” previously included on the tribute album, This One’s For Him- don’t tell Guy, but I like Terri’s version every bit as much as his) beside a Latin folk, rap-infused number (“Mi Madre”) and a Janis Ian-ish, personal testament of our inability to connect (“Talk to a Human”). More typical Americana, songwriter fare is just as engaging, with “Worthy” and “WASP” being additional favourites. 

 

Working again with Lloyd Maines, who appears busier than usual even by his standards this year, Hendrix refuses to let circumstances overcome her, fighting inertia at every turn. She does her own damn thing, and we love her because of it.

Who Is Ann? stands apart, a complementary companion-piece of challenge and experimentation where Hendrix examines spoken-word poetry (Minton Sparksesque) and electronica-based, percussive instrumentation using loops and effects. The ‘strangeness’ of this approach is enduring: that an established artist continues to push herself to areas that may leave some challenged is an appreciated trait. That the single-word entitled pieces (songs doesn’t really do them justice) are each timely, intriguing, and individually precious further elevates Hendrix’s standing. A seventeen-minute master class in pushing through personal expectations.

— Donald Teplyske of Fervor Coulee 

REVIEW: Terri Hendrix’ “Who Is Ann?” Is Spoken Word Country Electronica

Project 5.4 EP, Who is Ann? from Terri Hendrix presents “a collection of songs where the music is infused with vocal percussion and lyrics to create a mood that addresses depression from profound loss, and the steely reserve to move forward and grab the light.” Who is Ann? deemed Project 5.4 sets the stage for its sister project Project 5.5 both to be released in September; clearly Hendrix has words and wisdom a plenty to share.

“Drive,” the record opener, is blend of spoken word, 80’s keyboards, electronic beats, and mournful pedal steel courtesy of Lloyd Maines as it wrestles with perennial country themes of love and loss. “It’s a long lonesome drive here without you,” she sings before slipping into spoken word tale that takes listeners down an empty dirt road of a broken heart. The record is infused with quality performances by Terri Hendrix (vocals, harmony vocals, loops, and samples), Lloyd Maines (acoustic, electric guitars, pedal steel, percussion, mandolin, papoose, bass guitar and ukulele), Pat Manske (keypads), and Drew Womack (harmony vocals).

The second track, “Happy,” mixes samples of “homophobic religious zealots, hypocrites, mean-spirited politicians, and radio and television anomalies” with programmed beats and ukulele that offer padding to her rap about the lack of social cohesion promoted by the sampled voices, “why can’t everybody be happy happy, why can’t everybody get along.” She repeats the refrain, “the ratings go up,” condemning capitalistic greed that drives division. “Move” professes that the best cure for depression is to get up and move, “when you’re feeling bad, when you’re feeling blue, when you need to get back up, all you got to do is move…move your body, it’ll be alright”; simple wisdom presented with a funhouse bounce. Arabian instrumentation pulses through “Woman” with papoose and dance beat interplay.

 

Gone are any country flourishes on “Woman” where Hendrix’s spoken word dominates as she examines the nature of what she calls “women champions.” On the EP’s final track, “Grieve,” Hendrix turns to the very private and yet wholly universal trials of close personal loss. Hendrix is extremely open about the impetus for “Grieve”; in her press release she writes, “I lost my sister, Tammi Hendrix, at 6:42 p.m. on March 8, 2018. Her death was the direct result of a combination of both alcoholism and remaining in a dysfunctional relationship. She became isolated from those who could have helped her. I still grieve for my sister like a wounded animal. The waves come in and I find myself back in the ocean. That’s why there are samples of the ocean in this track. The breathy vocal bursts are deliberate, and signify being unable to breath during the grieving process.” Piano buoys Hendrix plaintive lyrics as she attempts to move on, “tell me how to plan for tomorrow, tell me how to do the things I must despite all the sorrow.” “Grieve” closes with a swell of emotion as a single haunting guitar line slinks in between scenes and crashing waves.

 

On Who is Ann? Terri Hendrix finds new ways to confront timeless tribulations while maintaining her rural roots in this innovative collection.  

 — H. R. Gertner

TERRI HENDRIX

TALK TO A HUMAN (PROJECT 5.3)

WHO IS ANN ( PROJECT 5.4)

 

 

Terri Hendrix is a brilliant poet/singer/guitarist/composer that came up with what turned out to be an ambitious project, indeed.  It began in early 2016, with the release of the folk-centric “Love You Strong (Project 5.1)”, followed in the fall of that same year with the more-bluesy “The Slaughterhouse Sessions (Project 5.2)”.  She intended to continue with two more albums and a companion-piece book, but, as is usually the case, life gets in the way.  A series of health battles plus the tragic loss of her sister pushed everything onto the back burner, until now.  This project now finds itself completed, with the release of “Talk To A Human (Project 5.3),” and “Who Is Ann? (Project 5.4),” as well as the accompanying book, “The Girl With The Exploding Brain (Project 5.5).”  The book is Terri’s autobiography that chronicles her struggles to cope with a seizure disorder while juggling her career as a musician.  We will, of course, concentrate on the musical side of things.

 

Project 5.3 opens with the title cut, Acoustic guitar leads drive our heroine’s tale of today’s Big Brother-dominated society, where, sometimes, all you wanna really do is “Talk To A Human!”  Producer Lloyd Maines’ banjo gives this one a down-home touch, too.  A Latin-tinged horn section fuels Terri’s coming-of-age ode, “Mi Madre,” while she gets downright bluesy with our two favorites on this set.  She’s on harp on both of ’em, and, first up, she gets all Memphis Minnie on us when she’s “without that baby of mine,” a cool read of Cindy Walker’s “Don’t Meddle In My Mood.”    Next up, Lloyd’s dobro over Terri’s sprightly vocals sho’ nuff brings the blues back around on a sweet re-working of Sonny and Brownie’s “Dogging Me.”

Project 5.4, “Who Is Ann,” is a tribute to Terri’s sister.  It is a sometimes-somber, sometimes light-hearted look at dealing with that loss and seeking the light of healing in the end.  The songs have only one-word titles, and they open with the tight harmonies of “it’s a long, lonesome Drive without you,” with the backing vocals from Drew Womack.  The set closes with the ethereal story of “I’m still here, in the dark,” and is entitled “Grieve.”

 

We see it on a regular basis within the pages of this humble forum.  Great artists take their own personal losses and struggles and set them to some outstanding music that not only cleanses their soul, but affords the listener an excellent and varied musical experience as well.  Enjoy Terri Hendrix and “Talk To A Human” and “Who Is Ann?”  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow, The Nashville Blues And Roots Alliance.

— Don Crow 

The OYOU & Project 5

Depending on which song you are listening to, you might think of Terri Hendrix as a jazz singer, a rockabilly artist, a country musician, or place her some other genre entirely. Her range of interests are as wide as her native state of Texas, and she’s the chops to execute them all with courage and originality. Her music can be gentle and thoughtful as well as lively and outspoken. She is also a fiercely independent artist, having worked out a crowd funding model and started her own label long before such business models were common.

 

Her recent project is a two parter, comprising a full length album called Talk to a Human and an EP called Who is Ann? A mix of originals and well chosen covers, Talk to a Human’s title track was came about after she read an article about a space craft exploring the planet Mercury, and began wonder what such an exploration might show about Earth. Hendrix’s country side comes out in her cover of Cindy Walker’s Don’t Meddle in My Mood. In addition to being a singer who well knows how and when to nuance a story with her voice, Hendrix is also a fine guitar and harmonica player, skills you will enjoy hearing her put to use on both these recordings. WASP is a tribute members of the women’s air corps during World War II, while the piece Grieve from Who Is Ann? allows threads of hope to rise through its sadness. You’ll want to explore the other places Hendrix travels on these recordings, including the affirmation in I Hear Your Song and a lovely version of the traditional song The Water is Wide.

— Kerry Dexter

Exploring Americana Music: Four Albums

Take Effect

TERRI HENDRIX

Project 5.4: Who Is Ann?

Self-Released, 2019

8/10

Listen to Project 5.4: Who Is Ann?

Terri Hendrix has had a busy year, with several releases that, although stylistically different, all share the common thread of her atypical and high creative song craft.

This installment, the Who Is Ann EP, sits closest to electronica, where loops, samples and talking are all part of the artistic and adventurous template.

“Drive” starts the listen vocally strong with warm harmonies as the music resides close to Americana with timeless folk storytelling as Hendrix injects spoken word, and “Happy” then steers right into electronica and poetry from Hendrix in the feel good tune that isn’t short on grooves.

 

The last 3 tunes are just as interesting, and include the playful percussion and sweet strumming of “Move”, which will certainly get your body moving, as well as the culturally strong and beat driven “Woman”, where hushed vocals run alongside the frisky tempo. “Grieve” ends the EP with emotive singing and soft, agile musicianship in the orchestral and piano heavy exit.

Although it may seem odd to use pedal steel and mandolin alongside ‘80s indebted keys, Hendrix and company do a fine job here while addressing weighty issues, both personal and political. An extremely prolific songwriter as of lately, Hendrix continues to produce all substance and no flash with her timeless, relevant art.

— Tom Haugen 

Various