For me Amanda Shires first came to prominence when she toured with the Rod Picott Band and played The Ent Shed in Bedford. I remember thinking at the time, what a great fiddle player with such a wonderful distinctive voice, reminiscent of a soft-spoken Dolly Parton, she also seemed so relaxed and a “bubbly” character on stage, I subsequently discovered this was also the night she’d discovered Pimms!
A couple of years later, Amanda along with Rod played a duo show in Tingewick and I can’t help remembering that when I first arrived to help set up I was greeted by Miss Shires with the words “Hi I’m Amanda get your shirt off” . . . . I’d forgotten to put my Empty Rooms T Shirt on, I also hasten to add that she’d decided to keep away from Pimms at this time, so this was her natural “bubbly” character. A highlight of the evening for me was her performance of “Angels and Acrobats” from her solo album West Cross Timbers, her achingly compelling voice that seems so fragile it might break at any moment but along with her beautiful fiddle playing can still sends shivers down your spine and pluck the strings of any man or woman’s heart.
I’m now looking forward to the release of her latest CD Carrying Lightning, due out in May and a tour of the UK with Rod Picott in October and they are booked to play Bedford, in the new acoustic room Holy Moly’s at Esquires, I’m sure they will muster up an audience willing to come and listen to these fine musicians, I’m also sure I will remind you closer to the date to check them out. In the mean time check out Amanda’s video, When you need a train it never comes