"It's no wonder why people rave about her power to breathe life into a song." - Boone, NC's The Mountain Times "Jodie's voice is strong, rarefied and, to risk hyperbole, maybe even angelic." - Knoxville, TN's Metropulse "There's a purity in her voice that touches the soul, and anchored in the folk rock stylings of Patti Griffin and Shelby Lynne, it's almost impossible to pin her down in any one genre. -The Maryville Daily Times With a sound embracing Americana folk to acoustic rock, Jodie Manross has become one of East Tennessee's top singer-songwriters. Known as "the little woman with the big voice," this petite, 5'2" 29-year-old possesses a powerful voice much larger than her size and surprises audiences with her soulful delivery of songs. Knoxville, TN's Metropulse, who voted her Knoxville's 2000 Best Female Vocalist, comments, "...her vocals are the center of the music. Her singing and intimate songwriting shows varying shades of emotion - mournfulness and desperation to jubilance." Currently playing coffeehouses, clubs, and colleges, Jodie has been touring the Southeast and has opened for many talented, diverse musicians such as Scott Miller, John Mayer, Keb' Mo', Rusted Root, Jonatha Brooke, Danielle Howle, Me'shell Ndegeocello, Norman Blake, R.B. Morris, Olu Dara, and Leon Russell. While Jodie plays her left-handed acoustic guitar, she also often performs with a talented guitarist Laith Keilany. Many have recognized the strengths of their dynamic live show: "With Manross' booming voice and the group's energetic playing...they quickly have made a name for themselves (Metropulse)." Laith Keilany composes on acoustic guitar and oud, an 11-stringed Middle Eastern instrument, bringing a unique element to their performances. Laith brings his strengths of alternative tunings, unusual chord progressions, and stinging slide guitar abilities to the stage. Their reputation of being committed live performers as well as their onstage banter has created a buzz about their shows. Asheville's Mountain Express exclaims, "Together they create a combination of soul with modern folk and rock." Knoxville's Daily Beacon calls them: "a terrific musical outfit that has earned it's fans with a wonderful live reputation...talented instrumentalists all of whom display the capability to rock out with the best regional world-beat musicians." Jodie and Laith regularly play in venues such as Atlanta's premier acoustic club Eddie's Attic. They have also performed in many festivals in the Southeast such as Asheville's Bele Chere, Chattanooga's Riverbend, Knoxville's Sundown in the City, and Atlanta's Dogwood Festival. This versatility further demonstrates their unique appeal and ability to reach diverse audiences of both rock and folk genres. Jodie has also begun recently performing solo shows. These recent shows showcase Jodie's intimate writing style, her fiercely personal lyrics and her voice that ranges from powerful and compelling to quiet and honest. Spotlight Entertainment News likened Jodie's thoughtful lyrics and songwriting to "lyrical tapestries reminiscent of Ricki Lee Jones and Aretha Franklin." Jodie recently released her second album, Going Somewhere Soon, in October 2002 to rave reviews. Knoxville's Spark* calls the album "a revelation," while The Daily Beacon describes it "a seamless, enchanting project." From powerful blues riffs to haunting acappela work, the fourteen original songs showcase Manross' passionate voice and engaging and emotional lyrics. She is a standout among Knoxville songwriters and has been embraced by a supportive Knoxville community. This up and coming roots singer-songwriter breaks the traditional singer/songwriter mold and is refreshingly impossible to categorize. With original music that embodies both grace and power, Jodie Manross is not to be missed.
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