“I’ve just always wanted to make funk music. I wanted to make funk, soul, R&B,” says Kelsey Wilson, best known as one-half of the core of Wild Child, an Austin Americana outfit that has been putting out music since 2011. And although Kelsey tells me during a recent phone chat that Wild Child has a new LP ready to drop this Fall, she’s been working on her funk/soul/R&B project, Sir Woman, since just prior to the pandemic. In fact, she tells me that the pandemic itself halted the release of their debut album, but not for the reasons you might expect: “The album, Party City, was set to drop in March of 2020, but then the whole pandemic happened, and you just could not release an album called Party City at that time, so we picked the five most uplifting/love yourself songs and put them on an EP called Bitch.” However, Party City finally dropped this July and Sir Woman are currently on a headlining run that will have them headlining The Lounge at World Café Live tonight.
While the Bitch EP dropped in 2020, Kelsey tells me that the songs had been in the works for quite some time before that: “I’d been writing these songs for years, even when I was still in Wild Child, but they just didn’t fit for that.” Party City’s latest single, “All I Need,” a sultry and sunshine-soaked R&B jam, is apparently one of Sir Woman’s first, even before the group was fully formed: “That was actually one of the first songs I wrote… When I wrote and demoed it out, I didn’t even have a band.” However, she does tell me that her original version was missing a little something that she later remedied for the finished product that you hear now: “I was like, ‘This chorus needs to be better,’ and I went into the studio, and it just happened, like a gift to the universe.” And apparently the responses that Sir Woman has gotten from crowds at their earliest shows have been overwhelmingly positive: “The reactions from live audiences have been insane. They didn’t really know what to expect, and were mostly just Wild Child fans, but everyone just said the same thing: ‘It sounds like pure Kelsey.’”
Sir Woman already has a lot of new things in the works, including unreleased music Kelsey’s looking to get out into the world: “We recorded a new Sir Woman record, as well, so I’ve been sitting on two records… I’m just excited to get more music out to people. The work I’ve done this past year is just the best I’ve ever done.” But she certainly seems most excited about more people getting to see the live show, which boasts a plethora of players that she’d been itching to work with for years, but who just didn’t seem to fit into Wild Child’s indie Americana world.
“Everyone is a secret weapon. Everyone is so talented. I could walk off stage at the beginning and it would literally still be a perfect show. It’s just a party, but not in like a debaucherous way; it’s wholesome. It’s like a gospel party or a church party!”
*Get your tickets here.