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Tawny Ellis

Ghosts of the Low Country The Muscle Shoals Sessioins – 2015 ( Self-released)

Reviewed by Lee Zimmerman

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CDs by Tawny Ellis

Over the course of five previous albums, Tawny Ellis has proven herself to be a true representation of authentic southern spirit. Originally from Savannah, Ga. and a singer since childhood, Ellis has expanded her vision of today's modern Americana landscape through constant travel and with it, ample opportunity to survey the broad reach of the nation's landscape.

Regardless, her latest entry, the four-song EP "Ghosts of the Low Country," finds her consolidating her strengths with a pair of originals and two compatible covers. Her take on the country standard "Walkin' After Midnight" is particularly inspired, given her sweet singing and those indigenous instincts. The other non-original, "Desperate Tonight," is given a similar set-up, sung in a style that's serendipitous and self-effacing, a confessional ballad as relayed through her soft, shimmering stance.

Still, the standout selection here is the title track, an uncharacteristically bold entry Ellis conveys through a wail and a moan. Ellis' instrument of choice, pedal steel, is especially striking, here, adding allure to the song's sensual sway. It's the type of song a singer could easily stake a reputation on, and if nothing else, it ought to find a fitting place in her repertoire.

Nevertheless, Ellis is still relatively unknown at this point, and a four song EP isn't necessarily the vehicle to broaden her profile. However it does demonstrate the ample talent at her command, making it an excellent introduction as well.