Inquiring Minds

Elaine Greer's Favorite Swimming-Pool Songs

Homesick? Not Elaine Greer. Not anymore.

The waifish singer-songwriter and 2009 Houston Press Music Award nominee for Best Female Vocals moved to Austin a couple of years back. After the usual adjustment period, she says she likes it "quite a bit."

"When I first moved here I found it overwhelming and confusing," she says, "but now things are going pretty well."

Annotations, Greer's first full-length CD, is made for summer nights around a campfire. Heavy with overdubs, recorded in Greer's apartment and Houston's Treehouse, its gentle melodies and lush harmonies mask the displacement and doubts of a young woman coming to terms with unfamiliar surroundings.

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"A lot of the lyrics are me trying to give advice to my older self, if that makes sense," Greer says.

It does. If you're into Jenny Lewis, Annotations will fit like a fuzzy sweater. Greer plays Fitzgerald's tonight with Hearts of Animals (who's been pretty quiet lately) and Trio Musette, yet another project of Sideshow Tramps/Grandfather Child/Robert Ellis & the Boys utilityman Geoffrey Muller. Considering all the words that have flown back and forth between Houston and Austin recently, Rocks Off asked Greer for some perspective on the two cities' music scenes.

"Houston's scene is smaller and more condensed, while Austin's scene is big and spread out and has a million different niches," she says. "It's easier to get recognized in Houston, but once you do get recognized in Austin there are more places to play and more opportunities. Both are nice in their own ways."

Fair enough. As it's the first weekend of summer, Rocks Off also asked Greer to share her favorite swimming-pool songs - not songs about swimming pools, but ones that remind her of lazy days under an umbrella with a cold drink and a good book. From the list she gave us, Annotations, which you can stream on her Web site, would fit right in.

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Chris Gray has been Music Editor for the Houston Press since 2008. He is the proud father of a Beatles-loving toddler named Oliver.
Contact: Chris Gray