Seth Walker
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Seth Walker

New Orleans, Louisiana, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2002 | INDIE | AFM

New Orleans, Louisiana, United States | INDIE | AFM
Established on Jan, 2002
Band Blues Adult Contemporary


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



""Hear and Now: 'Time Can Change'" Album Review"

Seth Walker does what he does best on "Time Can Change" -- the blues. Walker slows things down and makes his mark on America's own musical pastime with his own musical experiences.

On "Time Can Change" Seth Walker takes love, the signature subject and at times most common cliché in blues music, and makes it his target. On the opening track, "Love Is Through With Me," Walker's husky tenor vocals and subtle blues guitar makes for a more stripped-down tone than his other work, but not lackluster in quality by any means. The song is almost a hands-up motion, a way of calling quits with love. But as heard on the rest of "Time Can Change," the motion is not so simple.

Where some blues musicians' talents lie in the emulation of what made classic blues songs great, both present and past, Walker clearly illustrates his diverse musical talent and experience by building on what makes a great blues song.

And for Walker, there is plenty to draw from for influence on "Time Can Change." Though he is based in Austin, Walker grew up in North Carolina, where he was surrounded by music, namely the music of his parents, who are both classically-trained musicians. His expert musicianship comes through on all of these 12 cuts. - KDHX 88.1 FM

""Seth Walker (2009)"--Austin American-Statesman review"

This young man is pure talent, a masterful blues guitarist, a singer with some swing in his voice and a writer whose originals such as "Gone Before I Knew It" and "2' Left to the Ceiling" (both co-written by drummer Mark Hays) sound less composed than unleashed. One can hear New Orleans in this record, Walker's fifth. But you can also hear the south side of Chicago, the supper clubs of 1950s Manhattan, the low-down Delta and the coffeehouses of old Austin. Then the man in the porkpie hat wraps it all up with a cover of Tom Waits' "Picture in a Frame," his clear and sturdy voice giving elegance to the unashamed love song.

It's been nearly 10 years since Walker moved here from North Carolina, but with this album he's finally arrived.
- Michael Corcoran

""Time Can Change (2012)" -- All Music Guide review"

Seth Walker gets pigeon-holed as a blues artist, which he is, possessing a sharp, fluid, and elegantly clean guitar style that makes him sound like a 21st century version of T-Bone Walker (no relation), always gracefully augmenting the song at hand instead of growling in the corner. Yeah, Walker can play the blues, and he has, but he's also a brilliantly nuanced vocalist -- part Al Green, part Harry Connick Jr., part James Taylor -- whose songwriting and singing is as much R&B, gospel, country, and jazz as it is blues. All of this is obvious on his latest album, the self-produced Time Can Change, which is much sparer, jazzier, and small band combo-oriented than his previous release, the Gary Nicholson-produced and critically acclaimed Leap of Faith, from 2009. The songs here aren't blues -- they're late-night gypsy soul numbers with jazz overtones and now and then a little reggae lilt -- but they carry blues themes full of the worries, concerns, and trials that come with life, love, and relationships. They just aren't blues songs in the accepted contemporary sense, which generally means blistering electric guitar leads and a growling, honky tonk tone. That isn't Walker, at least not where this wonderful set is concerned. Songs like "Stronger Than You Need to Be," "Before It Breaks," "What Now," and "More Days Like This" have more to do with Django Reinhardt than they do Stevie Ray Vaughan, and more to do with Ray Charles than they do Howlin' Wolf, although the concerns are the same -- how to find love, stability, and redemption when everything depends on it. Walker's vocals are as natural, clear, sharp, and as effortlessly elegant as his guitar playing in these songs, and it all fits together into a warm, unadorned little album that reveals itself more and more with each listen. - All Music Guide

"Bluesman Seth Walker Has A Surprising Song"

Austin-based blues guitarist and singer Seth Walker does his hard-driving thing on his new album, Leap of Faith, drawing from the Chicago and Memphis schools of music. So listeners could understandably be puzzled to stumble upon a sweet and sentimental ballad, sung with a pinch of Frank Sinatra and accompanied by both a shimmering weep of strings and a pianist with a mellow, mournful touch. The title is as hokey as Barry Manilow: "I Got a Song." And it's the oldest story in the ballad book: "Shoulda known all along / It was gonna go wrong…. [Pregnant pause.] At least I got a song."

But when you think about it, young Walker isn't straying too far from old-school blues. Some of his forefathers and -mothers had an undeniable affection for a big-band sound, and what made it work then (and now) is the voice. Walker's sweet tenor carries an edge of pain, as well as affection for blue notes. His blues music isn't just about guitars and drums, just as it isn't about the torn jeans and unshaven face he presents on his Web site. Topping off that hobo look is a fedora with a sharp crease — a cool, nostalgic hat that's the sartorial equivalent of "I Got a Song." - NPR

""Leap of Faith"--All Music Guide review"

For those who may have forgotten that all American music -- pop, jazz, R&B, rock, show tunes, even gospel music -- has its roots in the blues, Seth Walker offers a refresher course in blues based American music. Walker's been pigeonholed as a blues man, but he's much more. His songwriting is professional in the old sense of the word; like Hoagy Carmichael and Johnny Mercer, he uses the blues as a backbone for tunes that will equally please roots, Americana, folk, pop, and blues fans. He's a fine guitarist, but his playing never calls attention to itself, it's always placed in service of the song and the lyrics crackle with insight and subtle wit. He laughs with us, not at us. "I Don't Dance" is a smooth southside shuffle wherein Walker complains about his lack of dancefloor dexterity; the band rocks and while he stumbles wondering what to do with his feet, he brings a smile to your face with his understated humor. "In the Dark" borrows a Howlin' Wolf-like groove for a song about a clueless guy who can't see the love that's staring him in the face. Colin Linden's guitar is sinister and playful as it weaves in and out of Walker's vocal line. "I Got a Song" is a beautiful Ray Charles style ballad with an aching lyric, a big string section, smoky piano bar keyboard work from Kevin McKendree, and one of Walker's most soulful vocals. "Rewind" is a second-line strut about lost love that sounds like an R&B hit from the '60s, while "Lay Down" is a relaxed gospel tune marked by mellow resonator guitar. Walker also has a winning way with covers. Nick Lowe's "Lately I've let Things Slide" straddles country and R&B to interpret an arch song about aging, loneliness, and mortality. Poignant pedal steel and honky tonk piano give the tune a careless air belied by the lyric and Walker's weary vocal. Percy Mayfield's bluesy "Memory Pain" comes from someplace halfway between New Orleans and L.A., and Walker gives the tune just the right nostalgic touch. Walker lives in Austin, TX, a town perfectly suited to his expansive style, and this is his sixth album, a solid gem that should be in everybody's CD player. ~ j. poet, All Music Guide - All Music Guide

"Country-blues alchemist Seth Walker takes a Leap of Faith and lands in Nashville"

Seth Walker's 2009 album Leap of Faith was one of the year's more interesting Americana albums, because its notion of roots music drew not just from the country-folk tradition but from blues and R&B as well. It boasted the songwriting craftsmanship you expect from the Americana field, plus the syncopated groove you don't. It harkened back to records by everyone from Ray Charles and Willie Nelson to Little Feat and the Blasters, for whom alt-country wasn't so much a fusion of hillbilly and indie-rock but a blend of honky-tonk and soul.

Walker had been a bluesman based in Austin for 15 years when he released Leap of Faith. In that Texas city, the disciples of Stevie Ray Vaughan's blues-guitar slinging rub elbows with the apostles of Townes Van Zandt's lyric scribbling, and Walker became a "student of the song," in his words. He knew that the era between the mid-'40s and mid-'60s had boasted bluesmen such as Percy Mayfield, Willie Dixon and Mose Allison, who penned dark, sophisticated lyrics, but in the '90s and '00s, the blues seemed to be all about hyper-fast, trebly guitar solos and bellowed choruses about drinking and partying.

"I don't know why the words get left behind," Walker says. "Those guys you mention all wrote brilliant lyrics, but these days you don't hear that so much. Today the blues are guitar-driven, but I wanted to do blues that were as lyric-oriented and as well-crafted as the songs I was hearing by Nick Lowe, John Hiatt and Tom Waits. Then one night I saw Gary Nicholson at the Saxon Pub in Austin, and he played this song, 'Everything I Know About the Blues (I Learned from You).' I said to myself, 'That's what I've been looking for,' so I started digging into his material and found he has, like, 4,000 hits or something."

Walker made a songwriting appointment with Nicholson, and almost immediately the two wrote "Rewind," which appears on Leap of Faith. Soon Walker was commuting to Nashville to co-write with Nicholson and to cut the album with Nicholson as producer. The disc's two cover tunes — Mayfield's "Memory Pain" and Lowe's "Lately I've Let Things Slide" — are a good indication of the country-R&B fusion the singer and the producer were after. They got it on the 12-bar rocker "Something Fast," which features a guest vocal from Nicholson's longtime collaborator Delbert McClinton, the epitome of a bluesy honky-tonker. They got it on "Falling Out of Love with You," an organ-drenched slow blues of heartbroken confession. They got it on the title track, a finger-snapping, horn-backed, jump-blues ode to optimism.

"There's definitely a country element in Leap of Faith," Walker acknowledges. "Ray Charles always talks about the story of the song; he wants to get a story across. Country is good at painting a picture of the story, and blues is good at expressing the feeling behind the story. Blending those two — leaving the listener with both a picture and a feeling — is something I'm aspiring to do, the way Ray and Willie have — the way Gary has.

The album was released last March, and Walker was so taken by the leap forward it represented that he packed up and moved to Nashville on Dec. 15. He wanted to be closer to his mom in Asheville, N.C., and nearer to his tour stops in the Northeast. But he also wanted to get out of the comfort zone that Texas represented and to test himself against a new challenge.

"Austin has the country's best live-music scene — a lot more venues and a lot more people who come out and support it," he admits. "It's its own little world with its own life support system, and it allowed me to learn my craft. That laid-back, show-up-at-the-gig-two-minutes-before-the-show approach is part of Austin's charm. But the Nashville work ethic is something that inspires me. The level of musicianship is very high, because if you don't get it together there's a guy next door who's going to take your gig. This is my career, and here I can treat it like that."
- Nashville Scene

"Delbert McClinton quote"

“The first time I heard Seth Walker at a small club in Nashville I was impressed like I haven't been impressed in 30 years, with performance, presence, and great songs.” - Delbert McClinton

"Marcia Ball Quote"

Seth Walker swings, rocks, boogies, and plays low down blues all in one set, all on one record. He’s a great singer, and authentic performer of real American music, and he’s writing new classics. Don’t miss a chance to hear Seth. In person or on record, he’s the real deal. - Marcia Ball

"Taj Mahal Quote"

“He’s playing some hip music, with changes and soul. A little, white Ray Charles!” - Taj Mahal

"Clifford Antone Quote"

“Seth Walker is one of Austin’s most talented guitar players, which is really saying something in this town. His music brings out the best in the swing and rock ‘n’ roll dancers who flock to see him whenever he performs. A great singer and songwriter, Seth is one of the guys that keeps Austin the best city in the world for live music ” --Clifford Antone - Clifford Antone

"Jody Denberg Quote"

Seth Walker is a rising musical star in Austin - not just on the blues scene, but as a part of any facet of the Live Music Capital Of The World.


"When it Rains it Pours" 1997
"Meet me in the Middle" 1999
"Restless" 2002
"On the Outside" 2004
"Seth Walker" 2007 (Hyena Records)
"Leap of Faith" 2009 (Hyena Records)
"Time Can Change" 2012 (Roe Records)



Seth is the right kind of old school, the modern world can't live without. - Raul Malo

Time is relative: if youre just going through the motions, the minutes and hours sluggishly drag on. When youre doing what you love, the days fly by. In the three years since his last album, Seth Walker moved to Nashville from Austin, wrote songs with friends new and old, and played many, many shows. And just like most people, he thought about life, about love, and about the changes we all experience as you move away (both geographically and philosophically) from those people and places you know so well to try your hand at something new. His latest recording "Time Can Change" is a culmination of these experiencesthe sound of an artist moving beyond his comfort zone and challenging himself to walk new creative ground.

"The album is a snapshot of movement in my musical journey of sorts, states Walker. A culmination of the continuing search for a way to write, sing and record in a new way.

Change isnt the order of the day when you grow up slow. Seths childhood in rural North Carolina was spent largely on a two-family commune, with music as the backdrop to an unrushed way of life lived outside the city limits. Both his parents were classically trained musicians: his mom a talented violinist, his father an accomplished string player. Music was an integral part of each day where the soundtrack could run from Willie Nelson to J.S. Bach and everything between. Seth was exposed to, and subsequently absorbed, a sonically rich expression of life with all its inherent joy and pain. Although Seth started sawing on a cello by the age of three, it was the guitar that would ultimately be his true love. A musically inclined uncle introduced Seth to the blues, and in those raw, honest songs was the inspiration to begin trusting his own voice and his desire to express himself.

Upon moving to Austin, Texas in his early 20s, Seth recorded his first album in 1997. By the time he released his eponymous fifth LP in 2008, he had developed into an accomplished guitarist and an even better singer, distilling the soul of Ray Charles, the Southern boy roots charm of Delbert McClinton, and an uptown blues turn of phrase (a la Percy Mayfield) into his own distinct voice.

Seth also began to write with other musicians, an endeavor which led to a fruitful collaboration with Gary Nicholson, a prolific songwriter and record producer based in Nashville. Seth and Gary co-wrote most of the songs on "Leap of Faith," with Gary also onboard as producer. Released in 2009, "Leap of Faith" was Seths most accomplished album to date, successfully weaving together a diverse blend of influences and styles. As Geoffrey Himes wrote for Nashville Scene, it was one of the year's more interesting Americana albums, because its notion of roots music drew not just from the country-folk tradition but from blues and R&B as well. Leap of Faith was in the Top 10 of the Americana charts for nine weeks and received praise from No Depression and Blues Revue, among others.

Self-produced and unequivocally personal, "Time Can Change" is a distinct departure from its more polished predecessor. While fans will recognize the familiar rich tenor and bluesy guitar work, the new album trades the studio sophistication of "Leap of Faith" for a grittier sound and more intimate approach to songwriting.

I never know what will be on the other side of a song or a session, but I sure do like what I have found in the corners of this album: a stripped down, intimate version of what I am as an artist at this point in my life, says Walker.

Largely financed by Seths generous fans through a Kickstarter fundraising campaign, the album represents a rebirth of sorts, foregoing complex production techniques in order to more clearly focus on the song and performance at hand. Love Is Through With Me, a bluesy tune of resignation about the fickleness of love, sets the tone and features Steve Mackeys supple bass playing and Derrek Phillips spare percussion. Along with Seths acoustic guitar groove, this configuration is at the core of the albums warm, loose vibe. Wait a Minute captures the optimism and possibility of new lovea breezy, engaging song with Kevin McKendrees tasteful organ work and playful background vocals courtesy of the McCrary Sisters. With all the makings of a classic soul ballad, In the Meantime is a plea for a temporary stay to the inevitable heartache of incompatible love. And with Gary Nicholson back in the co-writer chair, the rollicking, light-hearted More Days Like This, with its catchy refrain, is an instant crowd pleaser.

"This is the purest, most honest recording I have ever done as a singer. I just sang and played, maintains Seth. Time can definitely change, and this album is a case in point for me."