Once again in 2018, the RFT recognizes St. Louis' unparalleled musical talent by presenting the STL 77, our list of 77 acts who did big things in the last twelve months. From now through June 16, the kick-off date of our huge two-day music festival ShowcaseSTL, we'll be announcing two honorees per weekday on our music blog. For last year's STL 77 picks, go here; for the complete lineup for ShowcaseSTL, go here.
Karen Choi’s life and travels have led her all around the Midwest and some points north and south. Raised in Nebraska, Choi lives in St. Louis and recorded her last album, 2016’s Through Our Veins
, in Minnesota. Tracks such as “Road to Tennessee” and “Kentucky Hills” suggest that the landscape and music of the South animates her art, and a twangy lilt gives a country flavor to her largely acoustic songs. To our ears, though, the gentle waltz of “Mississippi River Heart” is an ode to St. Louis — or some lucky soul living here — and Choi had a busy spring gigging around her adopted hometown with shows at the Sheldon and the Tap Room. Lately she has been backed by scene vets Tony Barbata (drums) and Stephen Nowels (bass), but Choi’s voice stands at the center of her songs regardless of who is behind her.
Recommended If You Like:
Over the Rhine, Shelby Lynne, Kathleen Edwards