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Rebel from the North

Mary Cutrufello may not fit the country mold, but she knows the country sound

Cutrufello understands that her story is far from typical. She didn't languish in some hayseed town in Tennessee or Oklahoma as a kid; her daddy wasn't a truck driver; and she didn't get her start lip-synching to Tammy Wynette standards at the county fair. "I mean, look at Dale Watson, he's a perfect example: his dad was a country musician, he grew up in Pasadena, Texas; he just lives and breathes the music," Cutrufello admits. "It's what he is in a way that I'll never be able to match."

To her credit, though, Cutrufello has done a reasonable job of proving it's the feel -- not the history -- that matters.

"Some people might find it presumptuous that I would say that after five years, I've got the vibe of country music down," she says. "Mine is a different take on it -- a more academic take. It's the way my head works. I don't think that invalidates what I do at all."

Mary Cutrufello performs at 8:30 p.m. Thursday, December 14, at Blanco's, 3406 West Alabama. No cover. For info, call 439-0072. Cutrufello also performs at 10:30 p.m. Friday, December 15, at the Edge, 2301 West Alabama. Tickets are $4. For info, call 524-4198.

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