"I Wanna Live" is a beautiful recording from beginning to end. I loved the title track and "Mama Danced in These Shoes," "Young Love," "Angel," and "The Desert in Bloom" are all classics!
—Dean Newbury, Musician and Concert Promoter
As my musical life began in the Santa Cruz area, playing here again is a kind of "full circle" for me.
In our twenties, I loved coming to see you and your band, Fly By Night at the Crow's Nest. Annie, I've never told you this, so I might as well share it here…how deeply I've been influenced by your loving and open presence on stage.
Your songs have always been great, and your band was amazing and tight, and the harmonies were out of this world…but it was you…in those little red clogs…
You shine when you sing. And I know you still do.
Thank you for modeling for me how to express one's true self on stage beyond the lyrics of our songs, and how to be present and real and to fully express (shine) your palpable love for your listening audience.
It is a tremendous gift that you have. Thank you, darling One, for sharing it! xoxo
—Janni Littlepage, Singer, Songwriter, and member of the True North Trio
Great. I loved "Skidmarks" the first time I heard it and I love it still!!!!!!!!
—Gary Burr, Singer/Songwriter and member of "Blue Sky Riders" (along with Kenny Loggins and Georgia Middleman)
Just loving the "I Wanna Live" CD. Such a beautiful voice and such strong writing...a joy.
—Ron Baker aka Ronnie B. Baker, Actor, Singer/Songwriter
You have a lovely voice!
—Rickie Lee Jones, Singer/Songwriter
This is so so beautiful and reminds us of all the lovely moments we had in the deserts of the Pacific Crest Trail and Continental Divide Trail. And today is my husband's birthday, so it's a special song to celebrate with, thank you!
—Gail Storey, best selling author of "I PROMISE NOT TO SUFFER: A Fool for Love Hikes the Pacific Crest Trail"
By Matt Kramer, Santa Monica News
Private passions, fond memories and, of course, love and heartbreak, contribute to this debut album by a writer and singer who seems to have lived more then her title track would indicate. The album appears to be the work of an acute observer of life who adds depth and texture to her songs by crafting descriptive images of a quality rarely heard in pop music. Also quote accomplished as a singer, Hughes delivers her songs with a clear pure voice which works quite well in the country/rock tone of the album.
Two of the tunes, "Angel" and "Girandola," were co-produced by George Merrill, co-writer of Whitney Houston's hits, "How Will I know" and "I Want To Dance With Somebody."
The measured economy in the lyric structure is shared in the crisp, uncluttered production. Pat Hubbard, who combined the duties of producer, engineer, and keyboardist, took effective advantage of third world rhythms and tonalities to give a number of the songs a bouncy, lovely energy. One example is "Mama Danced in These Shoes," a loving portrait of a woman's temporary escape from a hard life . . .
"Mama danced in these Shoes
She tripped lightly past her troubles
She sailed high above her sorrows
'Til the dawn set her down."
In "Gotta Roll," Hughes recalls more childhood memories:
"I grew up by a railroad track
Freight train ran just two streets back
Nights it shook me outa my sleep
And the dishes rattled in the kitchen sink
Sayin' 'Oh, gotta roll.'"
Hughes handles the hot-blooded passion of adolescent love in a refreshingly toungue in cheek fashion. In the wistful "Girandola:"
"I'm wearin' my best old dress and my Momma's pearls
And 'Tahitian Nights' perfume
Got my high heels on and my glasses off
As I trip into the room"
Despite the lack of affiliation with a major label, the state of the art in recording technology has afforded independent artists as much quality in their productions as can be found in the large companies. One hopes that radio programmers will give this album a chance to gain the exposure it deserves.
Country Artists Lend Tunes to BCAP Benefit
By Bob Henson, Boulder County AIDS Project, ReCAP
Annie's spirited lead vocals and guitar work meshed with Pat's keyboarding and harmonizing to win over the enthusiastic crowd. One of the session's high points was Annie's dedication of a song about parenthood to her mother-in-law Lois.
The Los Angeles Songwriters Showcase
—a first rate writer/artist with a unique style. Country to pop. Her "Me 'n' You" was recorded by Lacy J. Dalton on her "Hard Times" L.P. (CBS).
New Artist Profile
Country Music Forum
Don't let the angelic face and voice fool you. Annie Hughes is as down-to-earth and determined as they come. "I've got to make music the way I feel it in my heart and hear it in my mind." For her first album, "I Wanna Live," she and producer Pat Hubbard chose an independent label . . . where she could retain total artistic control. Though her sweet voice is undeniably Country and her songs wrap themselves around your heart, the musical arrangements sometimes stray from the traditional.
Annie's Country roots were nourished by other kinds of music as well. "Mom was into Latin music; Daddy took me to musical comedy and opera; I heard Harry Belafonte over at the neighbors'; and, of course, there was wonderful music in church. It's all part of my now and reflected in my songs."
Recording on Annie's album were Steve Fishel and Frank Reckard, on pedal steel and mandolin, from Emmy Lou's Hot Band; Corny Bumpus on sax from the Doobie Brothers, and (a pop duo) Boy Meets Girl singing backup.
Annie Hughes has subtly blended the variety of her background with an originality in her arrangements, and all together with her heartwarming voice, talented musicians and producer, they make her album "I Wanna Live" a rare delight.
Blue Knees Music
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Collbran, CO 81624
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