Many an author with a book launch or an artist with a show has echoed concerns about how much appreciation they can expect from their hometown audience.
But if you’re Karli Webster from Canyon Country, you just got confirmation you really can go home again.
After becoming a solid Season 13 contender on “The Voice,” Webster is pursuing her vocal music career, including a newly released EP, “Bittersweet,” which she shared with an audience at Wolf Creek Brewery in Valencia last month.
There were more than just a few familiar faces filling the Spiegeltent at Wolf Creek, waiting for the chance to hear the 22-year-old’s latest music. You could see Webster working the room, exchanging hugs with former classmates and chatting with family friends between performances by musicians that preceded her onstage – The Band Lexington and Dakota Spencer.
She stopped at a table to talk to Kennedy Poirier, who attended Valencia High School when Webster was at Canyon High. She said she’s becoming reconnected to the singer through a mutual friend, Ysela Coch, who invited Poirier and another friend, Daniel Baca, to the concert.
A former Sylmar High School classmate of Webster’s father, Ronson, was there for the concert. Valencia residents Lisa Sickafoose and her 18-year-old daughter, Jordan, wanted to hear the latest Karli Webster music after watching her on “The Voice.”
“It was amazing,” said Lisa Sickafoose about watching Karli on TV. “I was biting my nails.”
The release party and the new album were a great forum to show the young singer’s artistic growth since “The Voice.” Webster is defining herself with more clarity, which adds depth to her original music – which, in turn, connects her to the listening audience.
The five tracks on Karli’s new EP “Bittersweet” include original music, one song that the 22-year-old wrote seven years ago.
When she wrote “Catching Air” at age 15, Webster was ruminating over an end to a relationship that taught her the importance of self-worth and personal strength. For the “Bittersweet” EP she reworked the number with songwriters Terra Naomi and Hilton Wright and the album’s producer Dennis Herring, who’s worked with Counting Crows, Modest Mouse and Jars of Clay.
“What’s a Gal to Do,” which dropped on digital service providers early this month, sends a broad message. “This song is about embracing femininity as power, regardless of who you are or what that means to you,” Karli explained. “I wanted to play off of the ‘sensitive, innocent, hopeless’ narrative that has been consistently used to define women in film, music, and history.”
“Anyone” is the first song Karli wrote after she was released from “The Voice.”
“At this time in my life I had absolutely no idea where my life was headed, but I knew for certain that I didn’t need anyone to tell me who I needed to be, and this song is about that,” she explained.
There’s another thing Karli Webster’s experiences seem to have taught her over the last couple of years, which you could see from the way she seamlessly connected people from the past with her current message along her artistic journey.
And that is: “The longest way round is the shortest way home.”