Premiere: New Video from Austin’s Tessa Torrence

Tessa Torrence

“The Way It Moved” is from debut album by young rocker/songstress w/connections to Alejandro Escovedo, John Fogerty, BoDeans and Fitz & the Tantrums.

 By Blurt Staff

 21 year-old songwriter Tessa Torrence, stepdaughter of BoDeans frontman Kurt Neumann, just released her debut album Fear No Evil this week (critic Bud Scoppa calls it a “smart, visceral rock and roll record that builds on the sturdy foundations laid by the Velvets, Stones and Bowie, loaded with ringing guitars, pile driving drums and explosive choruses”). The video for “The Way It Moved” is as powerful as they come, and we’re stoked and honored to unveil it for you today at BLURT:

Here’s the backstory: “I’m very much a believer in that if you want something you have to work your ass off for it,” says Tessa.  “And that’s what I’ve tried to do.”  At 10, she began writing and never stopped.    (“I kept so much inside that I felt I couldn’t let out, so I just wrote and I wrote—in journals, on napkins, scrap paper, scribbles—never necessarily intending anyone to read or listen to any of it.”) A heroin addict by the age of 12, Tessa began writing to help herself through years of abuse, abandonment and heavy drug use. At 16, she began performing around her hometown of Austin, where she started a midnight residency at Saxon Pub, backed by members of Fitz and the Tantrums and sidemen for John Fogerty and Alejandro Escovedo. Her father, Kurt Neumann of the BoDeans, became her musical collaborator, bringing a combination of unleashed power and emotional supportiveness to his guitar performances that recalls the work of Dick Wagner and Steve Hunter on Lou Reed’s Rock N’ Roll Animal, or James Honeyman-Scott on the first Pretenders album, to which Feel No Evil bears a distinct resemblance.

 “Through it all, music and writing have been my therapy,” says Tessa, now 6 years clean. “I feel lucky and blessed every day that I was able get through earth-shattering, horrific experiences, to overcome things I never thought I could overcome—and to make this music.”

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