It is easy to get the blues for singer/guitarist Lucinda Williams. She has the kind of deep, rough, sultry voice — the likes of Gertrude “Ma” Rainey, Ornette Coleman, Sippie Wallace, and Bessie Smith — that has come to stand for the Blues. She recently played and sang through three nights, three sets a night at the White Water Tavern in Little Rock and demonstrated a command of material and a sense of audience well beyond her twenty-six years. Moving easily from the Delta Blues of Robert Johnson, to A.P. Carter’s Negro spiritual-rooted country, to finally her own slowed down version of Bob Dylan, Lucinda managed to captivate the loud, beer-drinking audience to the point of anticipation. Her own strong compositions, primarily country-folk songs, were also well-received and, before the night was over, requested.
—“Lucinda Williams: An Arkansas Singer Whose Star Rising” by Bruce Weigl, Sept. 1979