[Locals Only] The Stacy Clark Experience

The Stacy Clark Experience

Stacy Clark’s official press materials describe her as having “an honest desire to succeed.” Talk about an understatement.

After moving to Orange County from Buffalo in 2004, she has essentially acted as a one-woman production company, marketing firm and PR blitz. She self-released an album (2007’s Apples & Oranges); landed local accolades; got her songs on TV shows (including several episodes of MTV’s always-intellectual The Hills); and provided guest vocals on two tracks of The Glass Passenger, last fall’s release from Jack’s Mannequin (fronted by Orange County’s Andrew McMahon). She gigs constantly—alone with only an acoustic guitar, as well as with a full band—and has scheduled about a dozen shows in the month of June. She even has some of the nicest merchandise around, provided you don’t have any reservations about wearing a hoodie adorned with a woman’s proper name in frilly script.

Performing poorly at hide-and-seek
Performing poorly at hide-and-seek

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All of this would add up to nothing but neatly packaged smoke and mirrors if her music weren’t any good. The lyrics to “Strange,” the album’s closing track, read almost like a mission statement: “I am waiting for my big break, but waiting’s nothing but a mistake.” And fitting with Clark’s pronounced determination, Apples & Oranges tries out several different genres, from heartfelt singer/songwriter material (“Empty Bottle”) to electronica-tinged pop (“Matter of Time”) and stuff that would sound at home on ’90s VH1 (“Hello Again”). But with the album nearly two years old at this point, it’s her newer material that sounds the most together, such as “White Lies,” which fuses a number of these influences into something a lot more interesting.

Clark’s in-your-face ambition would be off-putting if she didn’t appear to be so earnest about it. Between her clear vocal talent and amiable quality (her MySpace features pics of precious moments between her and her dogs), it’s hard not to root for her.

Stacy Clark with the New Limb and Civalias at Detroit Bar, 843 W. 19th St., (949) 642-0600; www.detroitbar.com. Mon., 9 p.m. Free. 21+. Visit Stacy Clark online at www.myspace.com/stacyclark.

 
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