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Texas vocalist brings energy to Waco

Jan. 31, 1997

Courtesy Photo

Phil Pritchett will be performing at 10 p.m. tonight at Scruffy Murphy's. He will be playing tunes from his most recently released CD, 'Philworld.'

Heather Arrott

Lariat Reporter

Since his early days as 'Georgetown, Texas', favorite son,' Phil Pritchett has been refining and defining his craft. He is described as a 'Springsteen in cowboy boots mentality,' which is a reflection on his ' high energy performances' as the founder and primary singer and songwriter of the acoustic guitar duo Romantic Embargo.

Pritchett and the group have played in Austin, Waco, Lubbock, College Station, Dallas, Fort Worth, and San Antonio.

Their debut CD, Central Chilling Station, landed Pritchett as a fan favorite with songs like 'I Drink When I Think' and 'My Girlfriend's Getting Married.'

With the success of Romantic Embargo, Phil went solo in 1995. Kevin Jecker on bass, and longtime friend Mark 'Bake' Baker on drums, joined him and begin their journey through clubs and college gigs around Texas.

Pritchett regularly plays every Wednesday at Nasty's in Austin where he has made a name for himself.

The Austin club circuit provided Pritchett with a core audience that expanded when his band began touring the clubs and colleges throughout the state.

After its release in October 1996, the CD Philworld climbed to the top of the charts in Austin, which jump-started the group's popularity. Pritchett's popularity increased when he shared the stage with headliners like Jack Ingram, Soulhat, Little Sister, Dah-Veed, Bruce Robinson and Michelle Solberg.

Many Waco students and locals might recognize the name Wes Cunningham. Pritchett and Cunningham played together in the Suburbans. Elizabeth Harmon, a Dallas senior, remembers the Suburbans, who she described as 'full of entertainment and fun.'

His character and a special hometown style flows through his music.

Pritchett's humor is most evident in 'Pumpkin Pie' when he sings, 'You can tell a lot about a man by the size of his slice.'

His lyrics reek of Robert Earl Keen, which are silly and funny, keeping the listeners hooked.

The lyrics in 'The Way to Santa Fe' are superior to Pritchett's other releases; additionally, the CD is a barometer of Pritchett's maturity as an artist and songwriter.

For example, the 'water drops on the hood look like Rosary beadsLet this highway take us where it mayWe can find our redemption some where along the wayDo you know the way to Santa Fe?'

At age the of 25, Pritchett knows his best music is a work in progress. The most compelling lyrics and music are included on his latest release, a testament to Pritchett's prediction that his music and career are advancing with each new release.

Pritchett hopes to maintain that momentum when he plays at 10p.m. today at Scruffy Murphy's.

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