Tracy Jane Comer
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Tracy Jane Comer

Madison, WI | Established. Jan 01, 1999 | SELF

Madison, WI | SELF
Established on Jan, 1999
Solo Pop Adult Contemporary


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Tracy Jane Comer @ The Brink Lounge

Madison, Wisconsin, United States

Madison, Wisconsin, United States

Tracy Jane Comer @ Wild Hog in the Woods Coffeehouse

Madison, Wisconsin, United States

Madison, Wisconsin, United States

Tracy Jane Comer @ Lakeside St. Coffee House

Madison, Wisconsin, United States

Madison, Wisconsin, United States

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



[See this and many more reviews at WWW.TRACYJANECOMER.COM on the NEWS & PRESS page]

Featured Artist by the International Acoustic Music Awards:
"Tracy Jane Comer’s song 'This Losing Game' is a thoughtful, well-produced and haunting anti-war song, worthy of the great Joan Baez or Joni Mitchell. Come to think of it, Tracy Jane’s voice is just as powerful and clear as those ladies as well. This is a wonderful work and worthy of a good listen. Visit her website at to see her schedule and to pick up a few great tunes."
-Jan. 2005 - International Acoustic Music Awards

[See this and many more reviews at WWW.TRACYJANECOMER.COM on the NEWS & PRESS page]

This woman never does anything halfway. No one will ever accuse Tracy Jane Comer of holding back. A song may start quietly, and you may think you know where it's going, but then it rises and fills the air with added notes from a cello or sax and wraps itself around you. Even the sad songs lift the spirit because of the magic in the sound. And the voice isn't half bad, either. Comer can sound pure and angelic on classical compositions like "Take Me to the Mountain" and "Silent Care" -- on the latter, her voice rises at times like a cry to the heavens and dips smoothly down at others like a whisper to the ocean. In tracks like "Just One Person," she is steamy and seductive, a vibe enhanced by the vintage instruments (stand-up bass, tenor sax) weaving old-school jazz around her voice. About halfway through the CD, she suddenly takes a very 60s protest approach and wraps it in those magic chord progressions and the mournful sound of the cello, creating a pointed, emphatic anti-war song called "This Losing Game."

At times, she turns off the vocal mic and lets the music capture the listener completely. My personal favorite of the instrumentals is "Movin' in the Right Direction," an ambling, acoustic stroll down a country road. As for the others, "Yellow Bike" is a standout. It's a lovely folk ballad about a childhood of imagination and happiness despite the poverty. There's magic in the reminiscing and the warm acoustic chords. I like how she works in a few lines about looking back at it from an adult's perspective:
I wonder why I just can't understand
why I'm sad that I was happy then ...
But I don't think that it occurred to me
Life wasn't all that it should be ... we just lived ...
Comer can belt out anthems of independence and quietly croon songs of reflection and philosophy. And she puts every musical possibility into those songs, adding more voices to give more depth to the harmony, switching to a minor key to take the song in a new direction, dropping to a near-whisper for dramatic effect. Each song has its own subtle majesty. She's probably an obsessive perfectionist in the studio, but everyone involved can probably forgive her when the result is this unforgettable.
-Jennifer Layton, -

[See this and many more reviews at WWW.TRACYJANECOMER.COM on the NEWS & PRESS page]

Tracy is a singer, songwriter and instrumentalist proficient on cello, fiddle, guitar and piano. Comer has been compared to Joni Mitchell, Dar Williams and other well-known talents. The comparisons are well deserved as Tracy is a versatile vocalist who writes compelling, visual songs. Although her music is acoustic based the arrangements go much deeper, culling from classical, folk, jazz, pop and rock. Quietly There features thirteen originals and a poignant cover of The Beatles 'Eleanor Rigby'. Randy Green is responsible for the crisp, clean production allowing each instrument to come through as Tracy's rich vocals flow to the top. Randy also co-wrote some of the songs and plays guitars and keyboards. Other stellar guest players contribute drums, percussion, harp, dulcimer and sax. Unlike some acoustic records that rely on a few simple chords, Comer's work is diverse and dynamic. Upon each listen more subtle sounds and styles unfold. Comer's music ranges from spirited instrumentals such as 'Movin' in the Right Direction' to beautiful ballads such as 'My Own History' and 'Yellow Bike' — a glimmering song about growing up poor but still enjoying life. Tracy Jane Comer is a musical force and Quietly There ranges from intimate storytelling to animated arrangements! -

[See this and many more reviews at WWW.TRACYJANECOMER.COM on the NEWS & PRESS page]

Musicianship – 9.5 out of 10
The musicianship on Quietly There is near perfection. Tracy Jane Comer has incredible guitar skills as well as those who accompanied her on this disc. Her acoustic guitar sings as crystal clearly as her voice; if the entire disc was just Tracy on her instrument, it would be well worth listening to. (Rondo) is a prime example of that. She plays a mean cello, too!

Vocally, Tracy cannot be pegged. Her voice is distinct; however, for the sake of the review I will tell you the 3 very different artists that crossed my mind while listening. First, (Yellow Bike, Hello) she has the vocal sound comparable to a young Joni Mitchell (think ‘Both Sides Now’ and you’ll see what I mean) which gives her vocals a bit of a retro feel at times. Her voice also has the haunting quality (Take Me to the Mountain) similar to Maire Brennan (Clannad—Enya’s sister) and finally she has a more contemporary Sarah McLachlan feel to her music (Baggage, Eleanor Rigby). Now, if that doesn’t confuse you and make you want to hear for yourself, I don’t know what will.

Songwriting - 10 out of 10
Tracy’s biggest talent, however, lies in her incredible songwriting (thus is the only reason for the 9.5 in the Musicianship section!). From complex melodies and lyrics (Pathetic Fallacy) to simpler ‘catchy’ tunes (My Own History) her versatility is endless. There is a cover of Lennon & McCartney’s ‘Eleanor Rigby’ right in the middle of all of Tracy’s originals and honestly, her songwriting holds up excellently! Intelligent, interesting and moving are words that come to mind.

Sound Quality/Professionalism - 10 out of 10
There isn’t really too much I need to elaborate on in this section. It is an extremely professionally produced Indie album. Everything sounds balanced and complimentary and the songs are arranged in a very appealing order. Great job.

Packaging – 9.5++ out of 10
The packaging of Quietly There is well done. A few pictures of Tracy, acknowledgement, credits, and BEST OF ALL: LYRICS! It’s so wonderful to be able to read every word and see as well as hear the incredible songwriting skills of Tracy.

Favorite Tracks
Take Me to the Mountain
Movin’ in the Right Direction
Quietly There
*Stand out Track - Rondo

Overall Rating – 10+ out of 10
Rather high rating, I know. I guess I feel the need to stress the depth and care that went into Quietly There by high numbers, because musical talent is so hard to put into words at times. Tracy Jane Comer’s compositions are poetic, melodic, moving, thought provoking and soothing to the spirit. To me, that means she has achieved great success in creating this wonderful art known as music. She seems to possess all qualities she needs to achieve great success in her chosen profession.

However, you don’t have to just take my word for it. In fact, Quietly There is up for "Best Acoustic Album" in the upcoming Madison (WI) Area Music Awards (to be held March 26, 2005).

Hmmm. Maybe I am not crazy after all!—Jen Lush,, 3/22/05

See it on their site: -

[See this and many more reviews at WWW.TRACYJANECOMER.COM on the NEWS & PRESS page]

Reviewed by Heather Corcoran,

It’s no surprise that Tracy Jane Comer is a nominee for Best Acoustic Album by the 2005 Madison Area Music Awards. With such an intense talent, this folk singer is destined for great things! Tracy Jane Comer was touched by a beautiful gift of music. Her passion, pure emotion and mellifluous flowing voice blend this work of art for pure pop/folk music. Tracy is not keeping a muted silence in her release, “Quietly there”; instead she’s pulling all the stops in this toe-tapping delight! She’s creating her own “herstory” in this CD, so all we can do is sit back, relax and let her overcome us with her talent!

Hit Picks: "Take Me to the Mountain" and "This Losing Game" -

[See this and many more reviews at WWW.TRACYJANECOMER.COM on the NEWS & PRESS page]

"…[Second Wind is] soothing and expertly produced, without a wrong note in the thing..."
-Matt Pierce, Splendid E-zine, March 2004

B-Section, Newsletter of the Madison Songwriters Group:
Tracy Comer's new CD Second Wind is an impressive achievement...[She] uses her clear, pure vocals and fine guitar work to good effect on these thirteen tracks of contemporary folk. Most of the songs touch on very personal experience, exploring the sometimes painful nature of family relationships, how one sustains love, and how we relate to the modern world. And though the subject matter may sound rather serious, the attitude of the narrator seems to be one of understanding and general acceptance, as if she has come to terms with most parts of both the personal and communal aspects of her life. She might not always like the way things have turned out, but she sounds as if she has gained some valuable insights through her experiences....

Throughout the disc, Tracy shows off a deft touch on the guitar and good use of cello, hammered dulcimer and various percussion instruments. Her voice may be the best instrument though, always well-toned and showing a nice melisma that isn't overused. Tracy also has a way of extended a melody through a lyric so that there are no awkward breaks to the rhythm or clumsy wordings, something that must have been all the more challenging to overcome in the collaborative songs. The sound quality is quite good[*]…the vocals and instruments are crisp and clear throughout.

Overall Second Wind is an excellent accomplishment, especially for a solo debut. Tracy is a definite asset to MSG and the Madison scene. We should all look forward to her next disc and hope it won't be long in coming. - Various

[See this and many more reviews at WWW.TRACYJANECOMER.COM on the NEWS & PRESS page]

EDITOR'S PICK - Nov. 28, 2004
Well it’s not going to be "quietly there" for much longer for Tracy Jane Comer. This singer/songwriter is key to moving the whole darn genre forward. Her sound is mature and soaked with talent throughout this dynamic take of contemporary acoustic rock that’s not afraid to plug things in on occasions. Rather than a brooding self-obsessed nuance of an album that so many of her fellow musicians put out, "Quietly There" is an upbeat swingin’ album that sheds pathos for a brighter side of things. Soon I have no doubt that Wisconsin will be known for more than just cheese and Brett Favre’s Packers—they’ll be known as the lynchpin holding the doors open to soft rock in the singer/songwriter format. Superb.
- J-Sin - J. Sin, Smother.Net

[See this and many more reviews at WWW.TRACYJANECOMER.COM on the NEWS & PRESS page]

...Good lyric writing has become something of a lost art in the mainstream and it's encouraging to see that there are artists who take their craft seriously. Tracy Jane Comer, if her second album Quietly There is any indication, is such an artist.

In the tradition of people like Joni Mitchell, Suzanne Vega, Rickie Lee Jones and the Indigo Girls, Tracy Jane Comer writes songs of different shades and colors: a hybrid I've dubbed "chamber folk" as in her fine cover of the Beatles' "Eleanor Rigby" and orginials "Take Me To The Mountain" and "Quietly There"; and a kind of folky jazz that shines through in "My Own History" and "Just One Person". Tracy has a clear, highly emotional voice that brings out the best in her words and gives one a feeling of emotional uplift that epitomises only the greatest music (the aforementioned women for one set of examples, and unsung singers like Carlene Carter and Christy McWilson for a couple more examples).

The lyrical and emotional jackpot on Quietly There is achieved by "This Losing Game", as potent an anti-war song as I've heard this year and right up there in the 2004 protest pantheon with Tom Waits and R.E.M. Give Tracy's album a spin, if for nothing other than "This Losing Game".

Reviewed By Gina - E.O.M. (Evolution of Media)

[See this and many more reviews at WWW.TRACYJANECOMER.COM on the NEWS & PRESS page]

Tracy Jane Comer's Quietly There is a stunning showcase of both her lovely voice and her impressive skill on a variety of instruments. Comparisons to other adult contemporary artists such as Mary Chapin Carpenter, Shawn Colvin, and Dar Williams are inevitable, though she displays more range of style than any of them. Which means that anyone who picks up this CD expecting standard adult contemporary fare will likely be thrown by the jazz of "My Own History," the classical-leaning piano and full orchestral swell of "Pathetic Fallacy," or the two gorgeous finger-picked instrumentals "Movin' in the Right Direction" and "Rondo." Given her background in everything from classical to rock, including theater, choral, sacred and folk, the spectrum of genres covered shouldn't be a surprise.

Much of this album seems to have been guided by her producer/manager/co-writer/fellow musician...Randy Green. His production is full and smooth, ensuring every instrument is heard regardless of how many are in the mix. Credited as co-writer on six tracks, he also contributes guitars and keyboards. The guest musicians, Rock Williams (vintage drums and percussion), Steve Kasprzak (upright bass), Bryan Husk (tenor saxophone), Candace Kreitlow (orchestral harp), Katie Waldren (hammered dulcimer), are all well used. Williams in particular makes an impression on the childhood snapshot "Yellow Bike," a vivid recounting that recalls [Dar] Williams's "The Ocean." His hand-drum work propels without overpowering.

...Originally from North Carolina, [Tracy] has made herself at home in the Wisconsin music scene. She is also a favorite and frequent guest of the local media such as radio's WORT and Wisconsin Public Radio, and TV's Urban Theater (UPN14) and Worth Watching and Perpetual Commotion on WYOU...This record is a strong statement that seems determined to reach beyond a local audience. - Rick's Cafe (Madison, WI)

"Tracy Jane Comer's sparkling acoustic folk is reminiscent of classic balladeers like Joan Baez, complete with lyrics that combines social consciousness with personal issues. But Comer's willingness to expland her sound with such elements as harp, dulcimer, and percussion gives her songs a depth that many folkies lack. MTV recently used a track from Comer's second album, 2004's Quietly There, as soundtrack material for their reality show Made, which should hopefully expland her fanbase beyond the folk-club circuit."

"...One thing I really appreciate as an audience when I find out that the performer's words and actions on stage match exactly how they are away from an audience. There are many genuine folk artists in the midwest. I recently sat down to spend time with two of the finest: Joe Jencks and Tracy Jane Comer...Tracy Jane Comer grew up in North Carolina and her roots of ingrained respect and hospitality (as well as a hint of accent) come through her conversation and music as well. Her background in music, her computer aptitude, and her positive approach to life have all contributed to an increasingly successful folk music career. Onstage she humbly switches instruments as she sets up the next song with some personal background. Her respect for the audience and unassuming nature indicate how it is she would like to be seen: as a talented multi-instrumentalist and vocalist who is rightly matched with her competent business sense and who is aptly using her God-given talents fruitfully."
-Terry Corr, Editor of Midwest Folk Magazine - The Onion & Midwest Folk Magazine


QUIETLY THERE (full-length, Nov. 2004)

YELLOW BIKE (Solo Guitar & Vocals) (EP, Feb. 2004 and revised/expanded, Oct. 2006)

SECOND WIND (full-length, Nov. 2002)

WYOU's WORTH WATCHING (video from live TV concert, Oct. 2003)
URBAN THEATER (video from live TV concert with full band, June 2005)

Tracy's music also appears on these recordings:
WORDS (compilation, Oct. 2002)
ONE ON ONE (compilation, March 2004)
2008 INDIE MUSIC FOR LIFE (compilation, March 2008)

With Sticky Fingers trio (Michael Bryant, Damon Bourne plus Tracy):
STICKY FINGERS (self-titled, full-length, Sept. 2002)

With Likely Stories trio (Tracy plus Dave Schindele and Nancy Rost):
LIKELY STORIES (self-titled, to be released August 2008)



"This singer/songwriter is key to moving the whole darn genre forward. Her sound is mature and soaked with talent throughout…"
- Smother.Net Ezine
Tracy Jane Comer is one to watch in contemporary acoustic music. Hailed as "a versatile vocalist who writes compelling, visual songs" (Kweevak’s Tracks), Tracy is also a standout guitarist, pianist, and cellist with a rare blend of talent and personality that has gained her much notice as an intelligent and loveable entertainer. Her music is often lauded for its depth and variety, stemming from an extensive musical background that includes undergraduate and graduate study in classical piano, cello and musicology, plus involvement with folk, pop/rock, choral and theater music and many things in between…even a touch of blues and jazz.

"Although her music is acoustic based, the arrangements go much deeper, culling from classical, folk, jazz, pop and rock...Comer's work is diverse and dynamic. Upon each listen more subtle sounds and styles unfold...Tracy Jane Comer is a musical force..." (Kweevak’s Tracks, 2004)

Tracy’s music includes both vocal and instrumental works. Her lyrics cover a variety of topics ranging from personal to universal, often poignant, with memorable melodies and well-crafted accompaniments. She has been likened to guitar mavens Patty Larkin, Emily Saliers, and Alex DeGrassi, folk legends Joni Mitchell, Judy Collins and Joan Baez, pop artists Shawn Colvin and Sarah MacLachlan, as well as modern troubadours Dar Williams and Patty Griffin.

From her current base in Madison, WI, Tracy tours in the Midwest and is beginning to tour nationally with emphasis around her home state of NC. She has opened several tour shows for Willy Porter and has also appeared with national acts including Peter Mulvey, The Wailin' Jennys, LJ Booth, among others. She has appeared as cellist with the artist now known as Skylar Grey and others. Tracy also records and performs on cello, vocals, guitar, fiddle, and hammered dulcimer as part of local Madison-based folk group Common Chord as well as other local groups/artists.

Tracy was named INSTRUMENTALIST OF THE YEAR by the Madison Area Music Awards in 2008 and also earned previous nominations for BEST ACOUSTIC ALBUM (2004, 2005) BEST ACOUSTIC ARTIST (2004, 2005), and FOLK/AMERICANA ARTIST OF THE YEAR (2007). She was selected to perform at the 2006 MAMAs. She has been honored several times by Songwriters of Wisconsin International, VH1’s Song of the Year International Songwriting Contest, and the Peacedriven Songwriting Contest. She is a three-time recipient of the ASCAP Plus Award. Her latest release, Quietly There, continues to receive rave reviews in the U.S. and abroad.

Tracy’s music has been heard on MTV's reality show MADE and is being heard on all forms of radio on four continents. A frequent invited guest on local media, she has performed several full television concerts (solo and with band) in addition to making numerous guest appearances on both radio and television. She has released three CDs and two live concert DVDs, plus a CD with side project Sticky Fingers. Her music was also selected for inclusion on two compilations published by Spiritone Records.

See Tracy Jane Comer's official Web site for more information.

"Comparisons to other adult contemporary artists such as Mary Chapin Carpenter, Shawn Colvin, and Dar Williams are inevitable, though she displays more range of style than any of them...."
- Rick’s Café, Madison, WI

"...Tracy Jane Comer has more than a beautiful voice; she’s also a great instrumentalist. She plays the guitar, cello and piano with great skill..."
- B-Section, Newsletter of the Madison Songwriters Group