Dear Marsha, Friday, November 10, and Saturday, November 11, at Josephina's, has emerged as one of the local scene's most energetic and exuberant bands. Take, for example, the name of the band's debut CD, released in 1998: Woo-Hoo!, an exclamatory moniker that mirrors the band's attitude toward live performance. Dear Marsha averages seventy shows a year and tours in four states outside of Colorado, bringing with it a power grrrl rock sound with a twisted shade of soul and wicked humor. Marsha's leading lovely ladies and co-founders -- vocalist Raina Ayres and Wendy Clay, a guitar mama who can't stop hoppin' (on tables, on barstools, whatever) -- are on a quest to marry acoustic music with the energy of electric rock; in this pursuit they've filled out the band with some solid players, notably Bulgarian-born Emilia Shopova, a classically trained percussionist who can put Sheila E's work on the timpani and congas to shame. With influences like Janis Joplin, Melissa Etheridge and Lenny Kravitz, Dear Marsha mixes in the occasional ballad among its many rock tunes -- which range from the subject areas of life, love and failed relationships, to seeing someone with his fly open. And to demonstrate that the band has not forgotten its mostly southern roots (Clay and Ayres hail from the Lone Star State), Dear Marsha even delivers, on occasion, a stirring rendition of "The Devil Went Down to Georgia" that's so authentic it's sure to inspire everyone to resin up that bow.
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