Who, in her right mind, drops out of graduate school, chucks a mortgage-paying day job and empties her savings account to launch a music career at the ripe age of 26 — within weeks of writing her first song? BettySoo, that’s who. It was early 2004. BettySoo was newly married and pursuing a graduate degree in counseling. She worked for law firms and in vocational ministry, but deep inside she felt another calling: to sing. It was a passion and talent she’d harbored since childhood, but the idea of singing professionally never crossed her mind until her mid-20s. Once the idea took root, she couldn’t shake it. By her own admission, BettySoo and husband Dave Terry were responsible, financially sensible people when they married eight years ago. They were in their mid-20s and owned houses (though they sold his and moved into hers), and had the kind of jobs and savings accounts that afforded them a fair amount of confidence and security when they discussed a future together and the idea of raising a family. Then BettySoo up and decided to become an independent performing songwriter and recording artist, and instead of trying to talk her off the ledge of insanity and back to her senses, Dave encouraged her to go all-in and take the leap. In fact, when his own work schedule permits, he plays drums in her band and manages her e-mail list.
In less than a year, she wrote, recorded and self-released her debut album, 2005’s Let Me Love You. (“Family Man,” the song that started it all, closes the record.) She celebrated the album’s release with a packed performance at Austin’s storied Cactus Cafe. “I cashed in the friend card, and it helped!” she admits with a self-deprecating chuckle.
You will find BettySoo playing to listening room and festival audiences from coast to coast as well as in Canada and Europe. Like many self-critical artists, she is quick to dismiss the merits of her charmingly modest debut, but subsequent releases — 2007’sLittle Tiny Secrets and Never the Pretty Girl EP, 2009’s Gurf Morlix-produced Heat Sin Water Skin, and 2011’s Lie to Me, an all-covers collaboration with Canadian Doug Cox under the duo handle Across the Borderline — have all been embraced by critics, peers, and folk, AAA and Americana DJs. (A second duo album, More Lies, was released in Europe by Continental Records in 2012.)
Will Taylor (of Strings Attached)
Will Taylor, master arranger, composer, and viola, violin, guitar, and piano player, and 21 year veteran of the Austin Opera has led Strings Attached on collaborations with Shawn Colvin, Sara Hickman, Jimmy LaFave, Dar Williams, Darden Smith, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Ian Moore, Patrice Pike, Abra Moore, Pearl Jam for their Austin City Limits taping, and many others. His local shows and residencies (lately at Austin's The Townsend) include a hosts of Austin's finest performers, and always evolve into a crescendo of phenomenal sound.