Written by Eddie Ferranti
ImageA different scenario opened up for Rose and myself in the world of music coverage in Austin, Texas.  Along with covering a musician we got to participate in community service when the Barefoot Wine / Surfrider Foundation Beach Rescue Project rolled into Lady Bird Lake. The project, now in its eighth year, helps keep beaches, rivers, parks and lakes across America “barefoot friendly”. 

 In 2014, Barefoot Wine and the Surfrider Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the world’s oceans, waves and beaches, along with community volunteers, are embarking on a tour of 15 cleanups nationwide.   Along the way they spot light local popular musicians in each locale to entertain the workers after the clean-up.  Suzanna Choffel was the artist and at 9am braving triple digit heat she pulled on her plastic gloves, grabbed the cool “picker-upper dealies” they provided and helped lead the rest of us to over 30 bags of trash and recylable items!  The sense of civic pride and having joggers and bikers thank you for doing this good deed were all worth it.  

The follow-up celebration at Aussies was a sweet gig indeed.  It included a very nice spread of food and a full selection of Barefoot Wines to partake in from Noon-2pm.   Also we got to sit down with the artist and sweet Lauren Castelluzzo of Hunter PR in New York City to chat about what’s going on both with SC’s career and Barefoot.  

We last covered Choffel back in 2010 at the Mucky Duck in Houston and it was nice to visit with her again since she moved back to Austin in April 2014. She had been in New York City and has established a foothold there that she plans to cultivate, but felt like it was time to come back to the friendly confines of Austin.  Her fans are definitely glad she did.  SC said the move “rebooted” her writing skills while in NYC and “Golden Fires” off her latest CD, Archer, spoke of that very thing.  Jet Blue offers straight shots back and forth and is “guitar friendly” which is a big deal to hard working musicians on their own.  

Choffel’s style is hard to pin down because she combines smokey voiced jazz, ska, reggae, R&B, pop and rock throughout her music – sometimes in one song.   She’s comfortable alone like this gig, but says with her band she can provide “whatever” is needed and helps in booking shows at festivals and clubs around the country.   Suzanna glowed when talking about her recent jaunt to France and the UK.  Her recent release “Guardians” was being played by DJ Grant Phabao while she was there without prior knowledge which enhaced the tour indeed.   She really liked the feel of the clubs, like the one she played in UK called 12 Bar, and a return trip is in her future.  

ImageChoffel is not short of accolades for her work evidenced by publications like Rolling Stone stating “She’s graceful and possesses all the vibe in the world”.  Texas Music Magazine has a nice spread also in their most recent edition .  Headline performances at SXSW, Austin City Limits Fest, CMJ and Voodoo Experience to name a few were all nice bookings.  

The world traveled savvy woman can speak Spanish and Portuguese and definitely has a confident and outgoing friendly air to her up close and personal.  As she toiled in the heat outdoors effortlessly this day tunes like “High Horse” highlighted her breezy and soothing vocals that can mesmorize the listerner and make one feel at ease.   

Wrapping up Suzanna said she’s impressed how the music scene has amped up in different areas in Austin stating venues like The Roost, ABGB (good pizza!) and The Sahara have all suited her talents.  Plus on August 21 she’ll be at Main Street Crossing in Tomball where they have gotten aggressive and added a lot of killer gigs.  

Rose & I definitely enjoyed our second experience with the First Class folks at Barefoot Wine and you can bet we’ll hook up with them down the road of life if they’ll have us!   

God Bless all who support LIVE music…