AT THE BEGINNING
"Perhaps what Carolyne Mas has is luck--the kind of blind luck that makes her the right person in the right place. For the thing Carolyne Ma is is a rock and roll singer/songwriter, the kind that it wasn't acceptable for a woman to be ten years ago, or even five. Buoyant, upbeat, with no trace of the 'vulnerable, pity-me' persona that for so long has been the public appearance (and often, the private reality) of women in rock. She is neither freak nor revolutionary, in her own opinion and in view of the audience. She is a musician, someone who has as much right to that occupation as any of the boys.
Mas is young (early twenties) and looks quite small onstage, so that you rather expect that she will have a wispy little voice to match. Instead, the voice is a powerhouse, ringing out the words of her songs with a fine clarity (more clarity than when she speaks), occasionally dipping into a barrelhouse rasp to emphasize some of the lyrics. The songs are all her own. She is just starting to work in clubs and as yet, has no record contract, although that seems likely to happen. Her most polished talents are her singing and an easy stage presence.
The best song was the last, 'Quote Goodbye Quote,' a rocker in a major key about the surprise desertion of a lover. The high spirits of the song made it seem as if this episode may have been unexpected, but was definitely not a disaster.
Mas has another major asset in her band. Piano, sax, bass, drums, herself occasionally on electric guitar and lead guitar, this last played by David Landau who also functions as bandleader. The group had been together only a few days when I saw them. They were already a tight and finely organized unit, giving her first-rate support. They should be extraordinary within weeks.
It's still too soon to make the kind of predictions about Carolyne Mas' career that inevitably come back to haunt, one way or the other. But right now, it's enjoyable to hear her. The real fun will be seeing how she devolops."
Penelope Ross - OMEGA ONE (2-16-79)