Violet Star Records Randy Phillips 'The Buzz' Making Folk Music That Soothes The Soul South Park singer/songwriter to perform at Claire de Lune's By: Justina Ly North Park News/November 2004 Longtime South Park resident Randy Phillips is a singer/songwriter of folk music. Her album 'Wild Horses' released in 2002, is primarily folk music but reflects influences of jazz and bluegrass as well. Similar to her other albums, 'Wild Horses' derives features Phillips' clear voice and introspective lyrics. This latest album is another musical collaboration between Phillips and renowned jazz musician Peter Sprague, who was recently voted San Diego Music Award's Best Jazz Musician of 2004. Phillips wrote or co-wrote 11 of the 12 songs featured on this album. She also plays guitar and uses it to compose melodies for songs. However, in performance, Phillips sings and leaves the guitar work to her onstage partner, guitarist Daniel Crawford. 'I consider myself a lyricist,' she says. 'If I could I would spend every moment writing. I don't want to just write about relationships. I'll write about anything that inspires me.' Phillips keeps a flexible schedule and a notebook with her, which allows her to write song ideas or lyrics at any moment. She began writing while growing up in West Los Angeles. She won writing awards from newspapers and the Girl Scouts. In high school, she sang in a group called Stained Glass Rainbow. Phillips moved to San Diego in 1971 and attended San Diego State University. She earned a degree in sociology in 1976 and began working as a counselor at The Bridge, a residential treatment center for runaway adolescents that now operates under San Diego Youth & Community Services. At The Bridge, Phillips would often sing and play guitar for the young residents. 'The kids really identified with music and the freedom of expression. They were often more willing to talk after I played for them,' says Phillips. After working at The Bridge, Phillips helped form the San Diego Hospice. There she shared her music with patients, families and staff members. Soon coworkers were asking for copies of her music. Now, she divides her time between teaching yoga and as a stay-at-home mom to her 12-year-old daughter. Phillips is scheduled to play at Claire de Lune Coffee Lounge, 2906 University Ave., Nov. 20 and Dec. 18, both at 8 p.m. What people are saying about 'Wild Horses' When this lady sings, you better listen. Randy Philip's third album, Wild Horses, is great - no doubt about it. Pop the CD in your car or your home stereo and you'll know what I'm talking about. The selection of songs on this album will definitely take you for a ride. Regardless of what mood you're in this album is for you, because as the magic unfolds, it will take you wherever your imagination allows. Philips takes you along with her as she embarks on her own personal journey from tranquility to a full on sound that will definitely keep you moving! Each song in Wild Horses represents a different phase of the personal experience. Definitely check out tracks 2, 8, and 7. The lyrics delicately reflect the thoughts of a woman who knows herself well. Above all else, Randy's vocals make this album irresistible. At a time when the industry sometimes confuses the meaning of good music by how many albums is sold, Wild Horses proves that quality still prevails. Backed by some of San Diego's top musicians, Wild Horses can definitely share shelves with the best of them. SDAM.com Staff Writer Victoria Joven 'Randy Phillips' latest CD 'Wild Horses', combines different styles of music in her eclectic 12-song selections. Most songs are written by Phillips and/or in collaboration with Peter Sprague, who co-produced with Phillips, John Katchur and others. On the title track 'Wild Horses', side man Dennis Caplinger goes from banjo to mandolin to fiddle to add his skillful, gourmet flavor. Katchur's harmonies blend full and mesh well into Phillips' poetry. Sprague's acoustic guitar highlight a South American samba flavor on 'Down to the Bone.' On the beautiful 'Far Away' less is more. The simplicity of voice and guitar give you chills as this song becomes a prayer. The entire band shows off musicianship of the highest level. In my opinion, Sprague and Caplinger are two of the finest musicians on the entire planet. Their contribution is immense. Phillips vocals are pleasant as she moves from ballads to blues to rock, but her voice, more suited to the slower tunes, really shines on songs like 'Far Away', 'Gypsy', and 'Falling Star', her voice in the latter reflecting a folkier sound of Joan Baez purity against Caplinger's Dobro. The song title 'Troubadour', which I like for some reason, was written for Katchur. Richard Tibbitts adds a 'middle ages' feel with recorder, flute, and krumhorn. Phillips has written lyrics well worth experiencing. Good songs deserve many listenings to fully appreciate them. So what are you waiting for?' Phil Harmonic, March 2003 edition of the SD Troubadour 'A singer-songwriter with a difference, Randy Phillips 5th album, 'Wild Horses' will delight long time fans, while impressing anyone who is discovering her music for the first time. Her sound can be a bit hard to pigeonhole, though to be certain there is acoustic pop, along with folk and country touches, as well as jazz flourishes. Without hesitation, I can say this is her best effort yet. It's a particularly strong selection of songs, from start to finish, with something here for just about any mood. Reflective ballads don't come much more introspective or drenched in melody than 'Grace and Gravity', while opener 'Eye Of The Hurricane', is a rousing, sing-a-long rocker, made for playing loud - and there's ten more tunes here just as good. Even a jaded listener is going to find some real gems here.Ê 'Wild Horses' is full of magic moments that show off the album's warm, lush production. To be sure there is fantastic instrumentation on these hook filled tunes, from such notables as guitarist Peter Sprague, bassist Kevin Hennessy and multi-instrumentalist Dennis Caplinger, and the arrangements are sterling, with lots of little flourishes that show a real devotion to song craft. Take 'Soldier' for example. Check the vocal arrangement at :53 and especially at 2:26. Somewhere between Brian Wilson and early Kate Bush, circa 'Lord Of The Reedy River', all in a less than 10 second passage. And keep in mind this is a mid-tempo fiddle driven acoustic number. Then there's that killer guitar solo, plus tempo changes. It's a marvelously eclectic and engrossing sound. Maybe it's the little things, like the guitar passage in the title track at 1:27. Or how well the sequencing works. But when that spice is added to Randy Phillips wonderful voice, and the dozen enchanting, well-crafted songs here, you have an album that truly deserves to be heard by the masses.' -Bart Mendoza, San Diego Union-Tribune.