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Tres Chicas

Sweetwater – 2004 (Yep Roc)

Reviewed by T.J. Simon

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CDs by Tres Chicas

What began as a series of informal get togethers among three North Carolina friends has evolved into one of the most enjoyable country side projects in recent memory. Tres Chicas is the recording moniker of Caitlin Cary, Lynn Blakely, and Tonya Lamm. Cary is the best-known chica due to her former job as fiddle player and Ryan Adams' right-hand-woman in Whiskeytown. She later made a name for herself as on two acclaimed solo albums. Her amigas are Tonya Lamm (Hazeldine) and Lynn Blakely (Let's Active, Glory Fountain). The trio also provided harmony vocals on Alejandro Escovido's "A Man Under the Influence."

The chicas all have very similar singing voices which harmonize quite nicely on Sweetwater'Fs ten tracks. The best of the bunch are the covers including Lucinda Williams' "Am I Too Blue," George Jones' "Take the Devil Out of Me," and Loretta Lynn's "Deep As Your Pocket." The originals are standard country-folk fare dressed up considerably by Cary's virtuoso fiddle playing, most notably on "Foot of the Bed" and the mellow title track. Overall, Tres Chicas made a fine album that certainly warrants future collaborations.