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Biography

Victoria Williams (born December 23, 1958) is a singer/songwriter, originally from Shreveport, Louisiana but for the length of her career a resident of Southern California. Many of her songs detail the events, characters and sensations of a small-town or rural Southern upbringing ("Main Road," "Crazy Mary," "Polish Those Shoes"), and she also finds inspiration in nature ("Century Plant," "Weeds," "Why Look at the Moon"), everyday objects ("Shoes," "Frying Pan") and the unseen ("Holy Spirit"). Wonder, delight and awe are the primary moods of her music.

In 1986 she worked with then husband Peter Case on his debut album, following this a year later with her own debut, Happy Come Home, produced by Anton Fier. In 1990 she released Swing the Statue. She also often appeared onstage and on record with the band Giant Sand.

In 1993, Williams' life took a dramatic turn when she learned that she was suffering from multiple sclerosis. In 1994, a variety of artists, including Pearl Jam, Lou Reed, Soul Asylum, Lucinda Williams and others, joined together to record some of Williams' songs for a tribute/benefit project called Sweet Relief: A Benefit for Victoria Williams. This led to the creation of the Sweet Relief Fund, a charity that aids professional musicians (of any stature) in need of health care. That year, Williams also released a new album herself, entitled Loose.

Also that year, Williams appeared on Strong Hand of Love, a fund-raising tribute album to songwriter Mark Heard, who had died in 1992. That December she participated in a Christmas concert with Jane Siberry, Holly Cole, Mary Margaret O'Hara and Rebecca Jenkins, broadcast over CBC Radio in Canada and National Public Radio in the United States and subsequently released on CD as Count Your Blessings.

In 1995, Williams released her first live album, This Moment in Toronto With the Loose Band. Williams ended the 1990s with 1998's Musings of a Creekdipper and followed it with Water to Drink in 2000.

Her gift at breathing new life into standards, most often limited to her live concerts, was finally committed to record in 2002 on Sings Some Ol' Songs where she covers classics such as "Somewhere Over the Rainbow," "My Funny Valentine" and "Moon River".

She continues to tour regularly with her former husband Mark Olson, formerly of the band The Jayhawks, under the name of the Original Harmony Ridge Creekdippers; they have produced seven records, mostly of Olson's intricate compositions.

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