Wynonna Judd & Cactus Moser
Singers, Songwriters, Five-Time GRAMMY Award Winner, Wynonna & The Big Noise
There likely isn’t a person that’s listened to popular music over the past 30 years that has not heard of the name Wynonna Judd. Even more so, as World Cafe’s David Dye recently stated: "There are very few artists who are immediately recognizable by one name along" Each one of them are iconic: Elvis, Prince, Madonna, Beck, Cash. And you can put Wynonna right in there by recognition alone.
Even so, the creation of a band ’The Big Noise’ between Wynonna Judd and her husband, drummer Cactus Moser, was done to go beyond what the name ’Wynonna’ may call to mind to a musical future that embraces the pair’s love for Soul, Blues, Country. Rock and Americana and explore genres beyond what either has done before.
Moser and Judd recently told Billboard the music was recorded simply for the love of it. Words like ’demographic’ weren’t a consideration during the recording process.’
"I don’t even know if I was that conscious about bridging the gap between commerce and art," Judd said. "There was no agenda. We just took 10 songs that we really loved and I’ll be darned if we’re not playing the songs at places like Napa Valley -- where people don’t buy records -- and they are coming up and saying, ’I had no idea that you were that nasty and that fun."
What sets the disc apart is that it is truly a band effort recorded with her four-man ensemble. She said she was encouraged by her husband and bandmate, Cactus Moser, to differentiate from what she has done before in her career.
She told Billboard: "We call this record ’vintage modern,’ she said. "All of the instruments are vintage. The drums are from the 1930s and sound unlike any drums I’ve ever heard. We’re using microphones from the 1940s that Tony Bennett would have used".
For Moser, producing his wife was an enjoyable experience all the way around -- especially on the soulful yearning of "You Are So Beautiful," which he said reminded him of what sets her apart as a vocalist.
"That one is really what I think about Wy and how we communicate with each other," Moser said. "Her voice on that song is so amazing. I played it for a friend of mine who is also a singer and she just started crying. That is why Wynonna is Wynonna. Nobody is this girl. There’s just this way she interprets that and a way that she says it, it’s so beautiful. The lyrics are so simple, but what she turns it into is so amazing."
The disc features guest appearances from the likes of Derek Trucks, Susan Tedeschi,(On ’Ain’t No Thing’) Timothy B. Schmit and Americana favorite Jason Isbell, who adds his vocal touch on the confessional "Things I Lean On." Judd said the song is one of the most personal she has ever been a part of.
And, she’s more than ready to take the new music on the road. "I want the fans to walk away from the shows feeling better than when they came. That’s my only agenda. It’s just a good time to play music and enjoy watching my husband play drums. They said he would never play again, so it’s a gift every night to be on stage with him (after a motorcycle accident cost him a leg several years ago). It’s so great to be alive and doing something that I enjoy and love. It’s the best on all levels right now."