I started writing about musical spin-offs last week and the Dixie Chicks are what got me thinking about that idea. It’s funny for me to think about it now because it happened in the mid 80s but James Taylor, the artist who spun me into the Dixie Chicks, could be considered a spin-off artist for me too. I first discovered JT via a CarQuest commercial. The commercial was not memorable except that they played JT’s version of ‘You’ve Got a Friend’. I immediately loved the 20 seconds of the song that was played and wanted to discover more about that voice. When I realized this dude had lots of albums, I was sincerely pleased. Since then, JT has introduced me to other artists as well, including George Jones and Buddy Holly. His covers of their songs led me to explore their catalogs and pay attention to music and artists I simply would never have thought to listen to.
Another spin-off I've thought about recently… I have been to a few Indigo Girls concerts and enjoyed them all. One was particularly memorable because the opening act was a group I'd never heard of before called Girlyman. They performed several songs I immediately loved and my wife bought the CD right after the show. During a recent event in which I was asked to give a speech, I used a Girlyman song as my closing music. Very good stuff. Girlyman is the kind of spin-off group I certainly was not going to discover independently. Even though the Indigo Girls did not work with them (except for pulling them on stage to sing background vocals), I totally associate Girlyman with the Indigo Girls because they were my introduction to them.