beth wimmer ❦ switzerland’s americana songstress
"An honest voice, full of heart and soul and incredible songs." - Swa, ROOTSVILLE, Belgium
"Beth Wimmer navigates a course of her own brand of blue-eyed soul, country-tinged folk, and completely unique musical odes of human setbacks overwhelmed by soulful transformation." - Thomas Reilly, Primerica Music Review
PRESS RELEASE: Spring 2020 - Chemical Reaction, bookmark music
Beth Wimmer’s timely new album “Chemical Reaction” ignites with themes of love, death, a fox, and chemistry.
Thurgau, Switzerland—Beth Wimmer, ’Switzerland’s Americana Songstress’ releases her fifth album, “Chemical Reaction” (bookmark music). “Chemical Reaction” picks up where Wimmer’s October 2017 album, “Bookmark”, left off. “Bookmark” reached Number 18 on the Euro Americana Charts in early 2018. It won dozens of enthusiastic reviews in Europe, the UK and USA, and songs from “Bookmark”, as well as from Wimmer’s previous three albums, are in regular rotation on Radio Swiss Pop, Country Radio Switzerland, and many terrestrial and internet radio stations across Europe.
“Chemical Reaction”, co-produced by Billy Watts and Beth, is concocted of ten new Americana songs written by Wimmer and performed with her long-time musical partners from Los Angeles, the Mojo Monkeys’ David Raven on drums (Shelby Lynne, Keith Richards, Norah Jones); Taras Prodaniuk on bass (Merle Haggard, Lucinda Williams); and Billy Watts (Eric Burdon & the Animals, John Mayall, Jackson Browne) on guitars. The well-respected rootsy musicians, who formed their swamp-rock power-trio Mojo Monkeys 30 years ago, also recorded with Wimmer on “Bookmark” (2017), as well as her first two albums, back in Beth’s Los Angeles days.
Billy Watts’ decades of intuitive, soul-studied, conversational guitar-playing has earned him a signature style appreciated by fans and fellow musicians worldwide. This unique and sensitive style informs his creative choices as music producer. Throughout “Chemical Reaction”, it is Watts who brings the smoldering, radiating electric presence to the songs’ productions, and offers grounding, soulful background vocal arrangements. In 2019, Watts, a native Canadian, was nominated for the prestigious Grammy award as guitarist in the band Teresa James & The Rhythm Tramps, in the contemporary blues album category. Billy says, of “Chemical Reaction”: “Beth has written a selection of wonderful songs with themes that touch the hearts of us all.”
The variously themed songs of “Chemical Reaction” are graced with select guest musicians. There are more than a few songs on the topic of love, yet each one is written distinctly within its own theme. The title track, “Chemical Reaction”, sings praises for chemistry that bonds a couple even through ‘inclement weather’ and is written in terms of chemistry. “Better Than You Think” visits the slightly noir side of a romance and features silky keyboard parts from Christof Waibel, of Hohenems, Austria, accented with tasty classical guitar, samba style, from Watts. “Restless Melody” lulls the listener through a lush ballad of love about the dance of songwriting, while Aaron Till’s viola soars sweetly throughout. Then we learn about Wimmer’s faults in the rocking “My Bad Side”, where she tells the truth and strives to be a better person. “When I Die” is a surprisingly upbeat, country-informed number where Wimmer speaks to the universal question, and shares her worries of what will happen to her when she dies. “Heavy” is a soul-infused confession of vulnerability and offer for emotional support. “Fox On The Highway” haunts with hopelessness over man’s inhumanity to man, and animals. All the while, Watts’ electric guitar swells, his dobro speaks, and his lap steel weaves through these themes, with voices and agreed phrases of their own.
“Chemical Reaction” glows warmly to the end, with songs of love strong and lasting because of chemistry: “Beating Better”; and love lasting through the seasons: “Cold Rain”, again with rich viola presence from Till and swirling keyboards from Waibel. The album's last number is a frisky shuffle, a plea for good night kisses and “dessert in bed”, in “Sugar Daddy”. A playful and sweet 'nightcap' of a finish for "Chemical Reaction".
The Texas-born, long-time “Angeleno”, David Raven, mixed the ten tunes of “Chemical Reaction” in his Honky Abbey Studio in Los Angeles. Watts and Wimmer were confident in turning over the recordings to Raven’s capable hands, and ears, knowing his role as drummer, percussionist and vocalist on the album would lend him special feeling for the right mood for each song.
The combined chemistry among this team of sensitive players formulates a sea of powerful grooves, upon which Beth Wimmer’s warm, honest and experienced voice floats, dives deep, and soars above (...like the birds she loves - ‘My Bad Side’) throughout the flow of “Chemical Reaction”.
"A beautiful voice she has, Wimmer serves her songs with veins full of soul". -AltCountry.nl
"...if Chris Isaac and Annie Lennox moved down to the southern part of the states and had themselves a baby girl - that girl would sound like Beth." - Melodic.net, Sweden.
"BOOKMARK" CD 2017/18. Recorded in Little Big Beat Studios, Liechtenstein. Billy Watts, co-producer. bookmark music.
"Beth, I am very impressed with your new album...the best you recorded ever, without any debate... OK there are all these good songs, the very good rendition, but what shines the most is your voice. There is a self confidence I didn't hear before, your voice on this rich soundscape brings an emotional intensity to your songs... and you sing on melodies that are not so easy, it is your strength, it is part of your musical identity, part of your charm. And when you give us hooking melodies as on 'Pretty Good', you hit the sky! Really...this cd is kind of an artistic blossoming, you give me the feeling you found yourself, your found your own path... Merci!!"
-Mike Penard, RADIO ISA, Lhuis, France.
"Stylistically, this is a relatively bluesy album, although it opens in dreamier shape with the title track’s reverie, Watts adding electric guitar and bass to Wimmer’s acoustic on a celebration of a perfect relationship served up in musical metaphors. The blues kick in though on the uptempo 70s AM boogie rhythm of ‘Loosen My Grip’, Taras Prodaniuk laying down the bass-lines on a number basically about getting loose, letting go of the bad and going with the groove that offers up the wisdom to 'keep your eye on the sweet donut, not on the hole.' Likewise, even if the lyrics concern moving on and not crying years over a bad love, the lazing mid-tempo ballad ‘Louisiana’ also evokes thoughts of that same mellow rock era and artists such as Bonnie Raitt, Carly Simon, Wendy Waldman and Maria Muldaur." -Mike Davies, Folking.com, UK
"Beth Wimmers Album „Bookmark“ (2018) ist eingängige Americana-music mit kalifornischer Sonne gewürzt und voller Esprit vorgetragen. Zehn Songs, die mit Roadmusic und Liebesballaden eine ganze Palette an Emotionen abdecken und dabei gekonnt zwischen Enthusiasmus und Sentimentalität pendeln. Auf Radio-Skala zu hören in den Sendungen von „Go-West“. -Karsten Rube, Radio Skala, Berlin.
"GHOSTS & MEN" CD 2011. Recorded in Radiosky Studio, Como, Italy. Damiano Della Torre co-producer. radiosky records.
"Ghosts & Men' is a warm mix of uptempo blues and soul inflected Americana and more laid back, easy rolling balladry. The dappled folk haze of 'Easier Life' suggests early Joni Mitchell, while the funkier 'Bring You Back' and the southern soul swing of 'Makin' War' bring thoughts of Bonnie Raitt or the late Nicolette Larson. Deserving to reach as wide an audience as recent releases by Welch and Williams, it's a contender for 2011's "best-ofs." -NetRhythms UK
"American singer-songwriter Beth Wimmer has called the rugged, famous mountains of Switzerland her home for some time now. After two increasingly promising albums, her newest collection of country-infused rock, 'Ghosts & Men', is by some distance her strongest yet." -Americana-UK
"We cannot find a word of criticism for this excellent new album by Wimmer. The magnificent instrumental contribution of co-producer Damiano Della Torre on Hammond organ and accordion adds tremendous value to these wonderfully moving songs." -Rootstime, Belgium
"MIRACLE GIRL" CD 2008. Recorded in Honky Abbey Studios, Los Angeles. David Raven co-producer.
"Beth Wimmer embraces Americana with alt-country, rock and folk...The result may be called astonishing. Wimmer with the title track immediately indicates a very clear business card: ...with a miracle like me...brave and crazy things I do...I'll bring magic to your world, I'm a miracle girl. Superb song! An honest voice. Miracle Girl is full of heart and soul and incredible songs." -Swa, Rootsville, Belgium
"I've long been an admirer of Beth's smoky alto which is front and center on the wonderful "Miracle Girl". It's her songwriting though, that shines through. The tongue in cheek "Lover from Last Summer" and "Self Righteous Son of a Bitch" are my two favorites. I love it when a writer says things in a way that they've never been said before." - Peter Barker, Threshold Sound + Music
"Beth's done it again! What an eclectic range and style she has. I crooned along to "Miracle Girl", tapped my fingers on the steering wheel to "Ten-Four", thought about our boys in Iraq when listening to "I Couldn't Do It" and laughed my ass off to "Self Righteous Son of a Bitch". Poignant lyrics and memorable melodies. The production quality is superb. It's another winner from Wimmer!" - Julian Moss, Honor Films
"LIVE WITHIN LIVE WITHOUT" CD 2004. Recorded in Honky Abbey Studios, Los Angeles. David Raven co-producer.
"Beth Wimmer has a visually attractive product that's as warm and earthy as her music. Most striking is this performer's hearty, folk-informed voice, complemented by violin and B3 organ. Wimmer sings effectively about self-realization ("Move On") and even gets psychedelic on the album's title track, "Live Within Live Without". - Music Connection Magazine
"Wimmer unleashes painterly-like observations packaged amidst some of the catchiest hooks this side of Elvis Costello." - Thomas Reilly, Primerica Music Review
"Live Within Live Without" is a wonderful collection of twelve tracks that showcases Wimmer's edgy and progressive sound. Her luxuriant voice mesmerizes the listener, wanting more... This tapestry of human emotions is beautifully woven and quite captivating. Beth shows her expertise in telling her story with a sensitivity and humanness that she delivers with confidence. She has definitely found a connection with her gorgeous vocals and sweeping melodies." - Audrey Elliot, Musical Discoveries