CD Review: Dirt by Mark Selby

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Mark Selby Dirt CD Cover

Artist: Mark Selby
Album: Dirt
Release Date: 2003
Label: Vanguard Records

After gaining notoriety for penning hits recorded by Kenny Wayne Shepherd (“Blue on Black”) and the Dixie Chicks, singer/songwriter/ guitarist Mark Selby earned his moment in the spotlight with the release of his own critically lauded, 2000 debut, More Storms Comin’. His exceptional sophomore CD, Dirt indicates that album was not just a fluke. Many of Selby’s songs (some co-written with his wife, Tia Sillers) give vibrant life to romantic ruminations he keeps in his head, (“Willing to Burn, ” “Desire”). Favorable comparisons to Gregg Allman permeate this disc, not only in regard to Selby’s lyrical blues-rock guitar playing, but also his visual songwriting and slightly rough-hewn but engaging vocals — especially appealing on the lead track, “Reason Enough.” Excellent flanged guitar adds a hypnotic undercurrent to the gorgeous title track, but never detracts from the song’s true grit. No need for bells or whistles here: the music does all the talking.

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This article was originally written for Rolling Stone’s Online Magazine. Though Rolling Stone remains in print and online, this article is no longer a part of their archive and has been added to the content base of The Worley Gig for our readers’ enjoyment.

Cristina Williams, Singer/Songwriter, Guitarist

Even though I'm a writer as well as a musician, writing my own bio has always been absolute sheer torture. I wanted to hire a professional writer, but I didn't want the same old, processed cheese "I'm the most awesome thing ever!" spiel you see everywhere. I wanted something different; intelligent but fun. Then there was Gail. It was such a relief to come across a writer who knows rock 'n' roll, knows how you fit in the history of rock 'n' roll (she can name that influence in two notes!) and puts it together for you with personality. She's classy, sassy and a cool chick all around!

Rikki Rockett, Drummer, Poison

What a breath of fresh air Gail is! A rock fan turned critic who actually "gets it." My God, what a concept!

Sarah Fimm, Singer/Songwriter/Multi-instrumentalist

Gail has the distinct ability to locate the essence of an artist and deliver it into writing with careful attention and respect. She has a clear understanding of our language and the beauty of music, and thus, gives an artist what they deserve: a clear, unbiased interpretation of themselves in their own words. Gail continues to offer herself as a channel for the worlds of art, writing, music and humanity to converge. She is a unique, talented and friendly human being with an affinity for humor, experience and love. Who could ask for a better person to capture the center of you?

John Tempesta, Drummer, The Cult, Helmet, White Zombie

I have to say my interview with Gail for Modern Drummer was by far my favorite ever! Our interview was so comfortable that I felt I could talk to her about anything. We had so many laughs…She’s like the sister I never had. It’s so refreshing to have a Rock Critic like Gail who has so much knowledge and love of music. All hail Gail Worley!

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