[Bring It's songs]... They are gripping jazz, soul, pop and rock songs with as much blues as possible and are reminiscent of Bonnie Raitt, Peter Gabriel, John Mayer, Sheryl Crow or Sting….. Whatever this stunning album may be. After all that was, it feels just fine.” - Michel Estermann

Jazz 'n More (Switzerland)

This is a very fine album from Miss Bix, filled with honest songwriting, gorgeous vocals and crisp musical backup, all of which deserves your undivided attention.” - Jim White

Blues Roadhouse

Leslie Bixler, aka Miss Bix, is a great singer, an even great storyteller and a terrific composer. The Blues blends elegantly and sophisticatedly with jazz,rock, pop and classical. The album leads through the global pandemic, racial and social unrest, climate catastrophes and Californian forest fires. It is neither about despair nor resignation. Here the blues acts as a healer.”

— Das Schweizer Jazz and Blues Magazine JAZZ 'n' MORE

With a west coast blues shuffle as a base that gets built on from there, this is a fine after work/after hours set that's just right for cruising around. This gal doesn't need to come on like a house on fire to burn the joint down.”

Midwest Record Entertainment

Leslie Letven Bixler, the real name of the singer and guitarist, lost her family's belongings in the fire, but not her confidence and determination. Three years after her homage to the Mississippi Delta ("We Don't Own The Blues"), Miss Bix is back with 13 new songs about racial conflict in America ("Red Walls"), shows a lover where the rubbish is ("You've Got The Nerve"), or pops up on "You Don't Deserve To Be My Man" with pianist John "JT" Thomas and harpist James Zavala deep into the New Orleans blues. Franck Goldwasser contributes his excellent guitar playing to the relaxed shuffle "Aint No Such Thing" as well as to a few other titles. All of them were written by the protagonist (twice with co-authors). Apart from the rocking "Shake Me Discover Me", Miss Bix moves on traditional blues terrain and at the end she connects in the acoustic solo number "Moving On" influences of Son House with the folk of singers like Joan Baez.” - df

BluesNews (Germany)

... a great listen to some powerfully written and performed blues and some stellar musicians helping to showcase a talented singer, songwriter." "This is a very strong album with thirteen tracks delivering good value, particularly as there isn’t a duff song here. Every one of them is worthy and the level of musicianship from Leslie and the other musicians is first class.”


A multi-layered, mixed-bag, the blues runs deep in this one. Difficult to categorize, it serves up an interesting, well-executed treat in every cut.” - Marty Gunther

Blues Blast

For this production, Leslie Bixler alias Miss Bix signs 13 compositions navigating from Mississippi Hill Country Blues to the rhythms of New Orleans by mixing them with sounds of the West Coast. The style is varied but consistent and of high quality. Whether there is passion or the tone is more subdued, the emotion is always there. A record that has charm and strength.”

Blues Again

Leslie Letven Bixler aka Miss Bix couples compelling lyric sets with appropriate vocal deliveries throughout a consistently engaging present-day blues set. The Mississippi-by-way-of-LA-based singer/songwriter smolders through “You’ve Got The Nerve”, conjures a very Rickie Lee-like atmosphere on “Cocktail Hour” and stirs it up NOLA-style on a Tiffany Ann Pollack co-write, “Daddy Why”. Studio backup is solid.”

Roots Music Report

We Don't Own the Blues

 "Bixler's lyrics reflect been-there blues subject matter but manage to make it surprisingly fresh and immediate. Her approach amounts to a synthesis, at once contemporary and akin to what a time traveler could have heard at any given moment in blues history, from the early rural South through mid-century Chicago and beyond." 

"Notwithstanding the excellence of her band, on 'We Don't Own the Blues' the focus is on her singing, which is never given to excess." 

 "Take my word for it: this is not just another by-the-numbers blues album."

"MISS BIX & the Blues Fix/We Don't Own the Blues: This white gal with the blues took some time off to spend some time at the crossroads and soak it all in. The result? A wild amalgam of all kinds of southern swamp voodoo rolled up into the kind of smoky, sensual sound that probably got black men arrested for the crime of non-aversion back in the day. Like the down and dirty side of Bonnie Raitt you always wanted to hear, Bix is the seductress/enchantress that'll work you harder than a stripper that has to feed her habit and her pimp. Hot."
 —Midwest Record Entertainment

"This is one of those recordings I find myself going back to on a regular basis.  Bixler is an accomplished guitarist, a powerful vocalist, and one hell of a songwriter.  This album covers the bases, offering everything from straight-ahead blues to tunes colored with jazz influences and Motown infused R&B.  What’s not to like?"
— Bill Wilson, Reflections in Blue blog

"Miss Bix spent several months down there, soaking up the local color and learning from the players still active there.  The astonishing results are the twelve cuts that reflect the stories we have heard for a lifetime, dealing with tales that have been passed on thru generations.  The album is entitled 'We Don’t Own The Blues,' and every song is a story in itself."

"Miss Bix & The Blues Fix have delivered a wonderful blues album and prove to be an asset to the blues with this album!"

"The atmosphere that permeates throughout this album is one of treacle thick closeness and mysticism, whether it is about love, obsession, possession or retribution, it haunts you and invites you in... Greatly endorsed!"
—Brian Harman,

"What a musical enrichment is Miss Bix and her Blues Fix!"
 —Keys and Chords

Peter Merrett PBS106.7 Melbourne Australia 

MISS BIX & THE BLUES FIX "We Don't Own The Blues". 

* Label: Self Release.

*** Track 1. - "Follow Me Down"  Composed by Leslie Bixler. 
* Leslie Bixler: Lead Vocals. 
* Ralph Carter: Guitars, Bass. 
* John 'JT' Thomas: Hammond B3. 
* Brian Calway: Harmonica. 
* Gary Mallaber: Drums. 

There is a mysticism about this opening track as it swirls around like fog on a dark night on the bayou. Miss Bix instantly establishes her bonafides as a masterful expressive passionate singer that continues that feel of the orchestration with each and every lyric. Ralph Carter's guitar shimmers and pulsates throughout and then he combines on bass with Gary Mallaber on drums to make for a formidable rhythm section. John "JT" Thomas is absolutely  mesmerising on Hammond B3 as he wistfully glides throughout the mix in a magical way that is mesmerising. The Hammond certainly helps maintain the mysticism of the song. Then to add to the incredible sound Brian Calway produces a performance of stunning proportions on harmonica. This certainly is an amazing introduction to the album and one that displays a masterful display of not only performance but also production from Ralph Carter and Leslie Bixler. This certainly bodes well for the remainder of the album. 

*** Track 2. - "Slave To The Grave"  Composed Leslie  Bixler. 
* Leslie Bixler: Lead Vocals and Guitar. 
* Ralph Carter: Slide Guitar, Guitar, Wurlitzer and Bass. 
* John 'JT' Thomas: Hammond B3.
* Brian Calway: Harmonica.
* Gary Mallaber: Drums. 

Slinky cool slow smouldering Blues that has the South permeating through every note and the pathos is very tangible. Miss Bix is sensuous in her vocal presentation and very expressive as she caresses the listener with each lyric delivered with total conviction. Ralph Carter is in his element here and his guitar offering is stratospheric what with the blistering soul shaking slide guitar and then the laconic acoustic guitar for good measure. If that wasn't enough this true musical genius also provides the amazing powerful Wurlitzer organ in all of it's grandeur. Leslie "Miss Bix" Bixler herself also provided guitar on this track. John "JT" Thomas adds to the grandeur of the keyboard sound with the Hammond B3 and the sound created by the spinning Lesley speaker is hard to match in music. Gary Mallaber has his reed perfectly modulated throughout and the runs from his harp are simply gorgeous to say the least. With such a powerful Blues ballad one needs a masterful rhythm section and here you have the best with the return of Ralph Carter on bass and drummer Gary Mallaber. Such a strong but also sensitive ballad  that just has it all. 

*** Track 3. - "If You're Doing What I'm Thinking" Composed by Leslie Bixler and Ralph Carter.
* Leslie Bixler: Lead Vocals. 
* Frank Goldwasser: Lead Guitar.
* Rj Mischo: Harmonica.
* John 'JT' Thomas: Hammond B3.
* Ralph Carter: Bass, Guitars and Drums. 

Romping, stomping, grinding Blues that has Miss Bix in her element with stunning vocals that have a bit of rock in the delivery. The inclusion of the backing vocals from Miss Bix herself and Ralph Carter add a wonderful element to the mix also. Frank Goldwasser certainly unleashes a whiskey fuelled full on guitar performance on this one as he just smokes the frets in no uncertain terms. Harmonica tyro the infamous Rj Mischo unleashes a full on reed attack on harp and man this cat takes no prisoners as he lets rip all over this one in a virtuoso display. Ralph Carter steps up for duty not only on guitars which he is masterful on but also takes care of the rhythm section on bass and drums holding down the perfect cadence that has this Blues moving in the best possible groove. John "JT" Thomas caresses the mix with his stunning Hammond B3 and if one listens carefully you can hear that spinning Lesley speaker.  Sensational Blues that has a perfect groove and the most perfect of performances on a song written by Leslie Bixler and Ralph Carter that is an instant Blues classic. 

*** Track 4. - "Gotta Get Off This Ride" Composed by Leslie Bixler.
* Leslie Bixler: Lead Vocals.
* Ralph Carter: Bass, Piano and Drums.
* Frank Goldwasser: All Guitars.
* John 'JT' Thomas: Hammond B3. Slow stylish Blues that has Miss Bix caressing the microphone with a breathless sensuality with her vocals. Her voice is expressive and in complete control as she holds you in the palm of her hand. Stunning performance once again on a song she composed herself. Frank Goldwasser returns with another masterful display on guitar that simply takes your breath away. His runs a re mesmerizing with a complexity that he makes sound so simple such is his ability. The stunning rhythm section that so comfortably sits in the pocket on this one is handled by the maestro of the album Ralph Carter with his drumming and bass playing second to none with the cadence laconically rolling along. Ralph Carter not only delivers the rhythm section so perfectly but also sits in on the 88's laying down the sweetest of triplets. Rounding out this Blues brilliance is John "JT" Thomas on his ever present Hammond B3 and what an impact he has on the sound, pure liquid gold is the best way to describe his playing and he certainly can't be denied. Another piece of Blues that has everything going for it and can't be improved at all. Wow what a track. 

*** Track 5. - "Black Widow"  Composed by Bixler.
* Leslie Bixler: Lead Vocals.
* Ralph Carter: Bass, Guitars and Drums.
* John 'JT' Thomas: Hammond B3.
* Brian Calway: Harmonica. 

Catchy intricate guitar runs from Ralph Carter introduce this one and his playing is simply stunning but wow what an impact he makes with the various guitars he plays. Miss Bix enters with her vocals and instantly establishes herself as to be in total control of the song even down to providing her own beguiling backing vocals. Expressive song with complex runs but stunning breaks that completely amaze the listener. John "JT" Thomas's Hammond B3 weaves his magic throughout the mix weaving a web just like a "black widow" spider. Ralph Carter also delivers a very potent addition to the rhythm section on bass along with boisterous drumming also in a one man wrecking crew of power and passion.  Throughout the mix one can only be amazed with the tonality and luxurious harp playing from Brian Calway as he calls out from the depths of the mix. 

*** Track 6. - "Voodoo Man" Composed by Bixler.
* Leslie Bixler: Lead Vocals.
* Ralph Carter: Guitars and Bass.
* Frank Goldwasser: Lead Guitar.
* John 'JT' Thomas: Hammond B3 and Wurlitzer.
* Brian Calway: Harmonica.
* Gary Mallaber: Drums. 

Frank Goldwasser shimmers and grinds on guitar on the intro to this one as he plays with a demonic abandum that is just so very beguiling, weaving a magical spell on the mix! Miss Bix enters with expressive plaintive vocals that call out to the listener and maybe the devil at the crossroad seeking an audience. Ralph Carter also provides guitar on this wonderful sensory overload of just what great Blues guitar sounds like when played with a passion that can't be taught but rather be born with or the selling of one's soul. Brian Calway certainly is in his element on harp with this one as he simply rips it up covering the top and the bottom effortlessly with a tenacity that is hard to control. On such a potent Southern Blues you need an equally potent rhythm section and here Ralph Carter on bass and Gary Mallaber on drums drive this one like a rattling rumbling old steam train moving on down the line. John "JT" Thomas has the keyboards covered what with the stunning Hammond B3 and the grandiose Wurlitzer for good measure and provides a masterful display, no a virtuoso display of playing. This is a big, bold and brash Blues that has everything going for it and is one for the ages. 

*** Track 7. - "Crazy 'Bout You" Composed by Bixler.
* Leslie Bixler: Lead Vocals.
* Ralph Carter: Guitars, Bass, Keyboards and Drums.
* Brian Calway: Harmonica. 

Stunning intro with Ralph Carter providing wonderful percussion that instantly draws you into the song. There certainly is far less orchestration with this one than previous tracks but that being said this one has a stunning intricacy about it. Miss Bix effortlessly slides into her vocals and they just  sort of lazily drift along at the most beguiling of cadences. The tempo and her tonality are simply stunning and carry you along with her story and she also provides her own backing vocals on this one. Ralph Carter certainly is a masterful guitarist and here he displays in full that maestro like quality. Not only does he display that brilliance on guitar but again here he provides the wonderfully structured in the groove rhythm section playing drums and bass. Brian Calway's harp playing will have you drawing breath such is the sheer beauty of it and his ability to place it in the mix at precisely the right time is a standout. To round out the sound Ralph Carter provides the wonderful full bodied keyboards to the mix in what in the overall scheme of the song is an amazing contribution to say the least. 

*** Track 8. - "You're A Child" Composed by Bixler.
* Leslie Bixler: Lead Vocals.
* Ralph Carter: Guitars, Bass, Keyboards and Drums.
* Brian Calway: Harmonica. 

Ralph Carter unleashes the inner rock guitarist and sets about to provide an incendiary performance on this one and he certainly doesn't disappoint. Entering the realms of Blues/Rock this one has a potency about it and a complexity in the orchestration also. Wonderful percussion work permeates throughout the mix courtesy of Ralph Carter as does his incredible hard driving work on bass and drums as a one man rhythm section in a take no prisoners performance. Not content to stop there Carter also lays down the wicked keyboards in another virtuoso display of musicianship. When it comes to the vocals Miss Bix has is it just right with a nice big helping of attitude and  a wonderful tone that along with her impeccable phrasing make for the most perfect of performances from her. Again she has composed a killer track. Brian Calway handles the harp duties and his playing is superb on what overall is absolutely stunning. You can't do any better than this. 

*** Track 9. - "We Don't Own The Blues" Composed by Bixler.
* Leslie Bixler: Lead Vocals.
* Ralph Carter: Resonator Guitar, Piano and Hammond B3.
* Frank Goldwasser: Guitars.
* Brian Calway: Harmonica.
* Gary Mallaber: Drums. 

Very cool Blues is the title track that could have come straight out of the Clarksdale Mississippi songbook but was composed by Leslie "Miss Bix" Bixler herself in the perfect homage to one of the great centres of this great venerable music. Loping, rollicking laconic song that has the most smile inducing cadence about it and man this is the Blues and just what makes the Blues the music we love. Whether the song is eighty years old or two years old doesn't mean a thing when it is this good. Miss Bix rolls along effortlessly with her vocals as if life is simply just a dream and she doesn't have a care in the world, such a joyful experience to hear her. The addition of her voice and Ralph Carters voices as backing vocalists adds to the sheer delight of this song. Ralph Carter's Resonator Guitar has the sound and feel that perfectly encapsulates the time and place as does his other guitars in what is a display of sublime genius. Frank Goldwasser is also on guitar and with his input the sound just magnifies to the stratosphere and would have every Blues guitar God on high smiling with delight. The most enjoyable combination of guitarists would be nigh on impossible to find elsewhere. Ralph Carter also lays down some very stunning Hammond B3 on this one. The rhythm section is just drummer Gary Mallaber and man this cat keeps the cadence cookin'. Brian Calway is the dynamo on harp and he absolutely cooks his reeds in a performance that would have Sonny Boy 1 & 2 smiling in appreciation. Excellent Blues! 

*** Track 10. - "It Wasn't Me" Composed by Bixler.
* Leslie Bixler: Lead Vocals.
* John 'JT' Thomas: Piano and Hammond B3.
* Ralph Carter: Guitar and Bass.
* Gary Mallaber: Drums. 

The first impression that comes to mind with this breathy Blues ballad is just how gorgeous a song it is and just how good a composer Leslie Bixler is. Here the piano of John "JT" Thomas is heartbreakingly and achingly stunning as he caresses the 88's with a richness in his phrasing that perfectly frames the statement that less can be more. Such a perfect performance as is his brilliance on Hammond B3 that exquisitely frames the piano and floats throughout the mix on gossamer wings. Miss Bix delivers a achingly beautiful vocal performance that is full of gravitas and just reeks of sentimentality also. Her phrasing is out of this world and it is evident that she is perfectly in tune with just how to compose the perfect song for her voice and this is most certainly just that. Ralph Carter's guitar is supple and somewhat understated but none the less gorgeous also. Rounding out this very sophisticated recording is the perfectly modulated rhythm section of bassist Ralph Carter and drummer Gary Mallaber. Now this is a song and performance to savour such is the desirability of it and the sophistication. Slow smouldering Blues at it's very, very best. 

*** Track 11. - "Baby Come Back" Composed by Bixler and Carter.
* Leslie Carter: Lead Vocals.
* Ralph Carter: Guitar, Bass and Additional Keys (strings).
* Frank Goldwasser: Lead Guitar.
* John 'JT' Thomas: Wurlitzer and Hammond B3.
* Gary Mallaber: Drums.
* Bill Bixler: Saxophones. 

Here we are heading in a slightly different direction, a R&B direction with an emphasis on heavy percussion courtesy of Ralph Carter. Groovy overtones to the sound with a cadence that rolls along revolving around the rhythm section of Ralph Carter on bass and Gary Mallaber on drums. Miss Bix has her vocals in a pleading style that is perfect for R&B and she displays so much emotion in doing so. Bill Bixler adds the obligatory saxophones in true R&B fashion and his reed work is excellent. Frank Goldwasser and Ralph Carter lay down the stunning guitar runs throughout and demonstrate a perfect understanding of the style and sound. John "JT" Thomas provides not only the mighty Wurlitzer but also the obligatory Hammond B3 in a wonderful display of playing. The additional keys come from the extremely talented Ralph Carter who also adds to this with the strings inflection. Pure stylish R&B given some extraordinary flair for good measure in a masterful display.


*** Track 12. - "All The Time" Composed by Bixler.
* Leslie Bixler: Lead Vocals.
* Ralph Carter: Acoustic Guitar, Ukulele, Keys, Piano and Bass. 

Uncomplicated look into a mirror by Miss Bix at her life and all that she has achieved and just what it all has meant to her. Without a big fanfare here she is able to critically observe just what her life has achieved and what she sees in her future. Her vocals comfortably convey her story with all the drama and pathos of the story that is tinged with the not knowing beautifully. Joined only by Ralph Carter who provides all of the instruments on the track in what is a virtuoso performance itself, he establishes himself as a rare breed of musician indeed. One of  immense talents of our time. He provides Guitars, Bass, Slide Guitar, Drums, Piano, Keyboards, Organ, Resonator Guitar, Hammond B3, Acoustic Guitar and  Ukulele,  he certainly has provided the most poignant of musical beds to this pathos laden song. There is just so much emotion about the song that one is instantly carried along on Leslie Bixler's life story and can't help but be moved by it. 

Miss Bix And The Blues Fix you certainly know how to make an impact with an album and this album certainly makes a very big impact. It is laden with brilliant song after song composed by you Leslie Bixler or with Ralph Carter and each and every song is stand alone superb. The recording qualities of the alum are of the highest quality and perfectly frame each song and the brilliance of the performances there in. When it comes to vocals l suppose we can say "oh l've heard it all, they all sound the same" and yes maybe that could be true in some instances but trust me when l say "not here"! Leslie "Miss Bix" Bixler is one sassy mama who can really sing the Blues and in fact anything else if she so desired. She possesses one of those very special voices that only occasionally come along that instantly grab your attention and have you saying "wow l love her voice' and add to that her impeccable phrasing then you have a match made in heaven. Yeah she's got it! There is a definite synchronicity about this album as all of the sum parts come together in the best possible way and l think it is a combination of the best singer meets the best songs meets the best band meets the best producer. You have to have that come together and here the stars have aligned and the band, well the band are amazing so let's look at who they are. Let's start with the genius that is Ralph Carter, Guitars, Bass, Slide Guitar, Drums, Piano, Keyboards, Organ, Wurltzer, Resonator Guitar, Hammond B3, Acoustic Guitar and Ukulele. I'm exhausted by the list of instruments but in awe of the man also. John "JT" Thomas Hammond B3, Wurlitzer and Piano. Gary Mallaber Drums. Brian Calway Harmonica. Rj Mischo Harmonica. Frank Goldwasser Guitar. Chad Smith Drums. Bill Bixler Saxophones. This combination provided the absolute best in music on this album bar none. Each song is a major offering and a stand alone hit song that could be released as a single which in my opinion this album will feature high on the Roots Music charts. This definitely is an album for a lover of the very best in Blues music and a lover of the very best in female led vocals. Trust me it has it all and all you have to do is purchase a copy and l guarantee you wont stop playing it!


Malibu Surfside 9/12/17

“I have often been utterly astonished, since I came to the North, to find persons who could speak of the singing, among slaves, as evidence of their contentment and happiness,” wrote Frederick Douglass in “Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass.” “It is impossible to conceive of a greater mistake. Slaves sing most when they are most unhappy. The songs of the slave represent the sorrows of his heart; and he is relieved by them, only as an aching heart is relieved by its tears.” 

All of us evolve over a lifetime, perhaps in a vocation, an avocation, one’s personality, or in all other dimensions that blend to define a person’s journey. 

Malibu’s eclectic and electrifying Leslie Bixler has been writing, recording, performing and evolving as a talented, cutting-edge artist since her early 20s. Her works range from smooth jazz, to rock and roll, to charming children’s records, to the blues — her current fascination and focus. 

Bixler’s newest album, “We Don’t Own the Blues,” created under the moniker “Miss Bix,” is a soulful, sultry, sensuous collection of Mississippi Delta songs written by Bixler and produced by Ralph Carter (musical director for Eddie Money and co-writer of the hit “Shakin,” composed and produced music for “Dancing with the Stars,” and Kidthing). The pair, who have collaborated on some of Bixler’s other albums, including “Moon Food,” added many multifaceted musicians on the album, including guitarist Franck Goldwasser, JT Thomas (touring with Bruce Hornsby) on B3 and keyboards, Gary Mallaber (drummer for Van Morrison and Steve Miller) on drums, RJ Mischo, a stellar harmonica player, Bill Bixler playing saxophone, and Brian Calway on harmonica. The album also features Chad Smith (drummer for the Red Hot Chili Peppers) who makes a guest appearance on drums. 

The multi-faceted Carter played guitar, acoustic guitar, ukulele, keys, piano and bass. 

Malibu Surfside News sat down with the Bixler and Carter to talk about the creative process, the synergy and the soul that combined to make the pair’s latest album. 

“Both Leslie and I got a re-exposure to the blues through the workshops that we worked at together in Clarksdale, Mississippi. I saw Leslie light on fire,” Carter said. “The spirit of the blues hangs very heavily there and you can feel the depth of the culture. 

“ ... [Leslie] embraced it and her background – she’s an incredibly versatile musician as a songwriter and musician – combined with the soulfulness of the blues, that deep feeling of the blues, created a magical combination. She let it take her where it was meant to go.” 

For her part, Bixler says she and Carter have great synergy. 

“We have complementary skills,” she said. “I’m darting and outgoing. He’s a plodder. He knows how to take what I’ve done and bring the best out.” 

Bixler connects with the Deep South and the blues that evoke the struggles of slaves, the disenfranchised, people paralyzed by poverty, and especially women, who are restrained by stereotypes and who desperately want to break free and find their voice. 

“I dedicate this collection of songs to women everywhere who have been silenced, trivialized, shamed, or excluded,” the album cover states. “Keep holding on. A change is gonna come.” 

The collaboration between Bixler and Carter has resulted in a phenomenal, emotive, evocative album that beckons one to feel the music, to dance rhythmically to it, and to literally immerse oneself in its rawness. 

The album speaks of love, love lost, eternal yearning, elusive justice, angst, and of yearning to be free. 

Bixler’s voice, vibes and volume are sensual and evocative. 

The gritty, gutsy sequences and interludes of the album mesmerize the listener. One feels they are entrenched in the emotions, the hurts, the haunts, the sometimes aching hollowness at the bottom of the human soul. And yet, the album excites and invigorates the listener. 

“I want every song to feel good — to have that groove where you want to move to it,” Bixler said. “The pocket is where the beat is laid back enough that you’re grounded in your body. The rhythm is so important. The best players really understand that is where you put your vocals to the back of the beat where the listener is so relaxed. A lot of the delivery is phrasing as well – you come in late to the phrase. I strive for the back beat. It gets your attention like you’re speaking to someone.” 

The blend of Bixler’s resonant voice, voluminous and voluptuous, with the instrumentals makes for a great listen. 

“I really think I’m at home in the blues even though I’m not a classical blues musician,” Bixler said. “In this album, I stretch out a little singing simple blues melodies.” 

Dick Van Dyke, with whom Bixler has collaborated in creating children’s albums (“Moon Food” and “Rhythm Train”), has seen Bixler evolve as an artist. He knows a cutting-edge body of work when he hears it. 

“Leslie and I have collaborated on the children’s albums where she wrote the very best children’s songs,” Van Dyke said. “In this work, it’s all brand new blues. The songs have got all that soul.” 

Somewhere between jamming and conversing about the songs, Bixler and Carter realized they had a wonderful, creative success. Their biggest challenge was finalizing the album production. 

“We started making sketches of songs in one session and then layered on parts, drums or some sort of percussion, bass, or a couple of guitar parts,” Carter said. “At one point, Leslie turned around and said ‘I’ve got an album here.’ Then, we turned around and let ourselves be creative. 

“Leslie can think outside of the box and we allowed ourselves to be experimental and followed our gut. We’d work on a song for a session or two and then put it away and come back to it and decorate it the way we wanted it. We had a huge amount of creativity going on. The tough part was choosing what songs to put on the album. Our sketches survived and there are songs for the next album.” 

“We Don’t Own the Blues” is an intense, passionate body of work. 

“I’ve worked with a lot of performers and it’s been an absolute pleasure to work with Leslie because she knows how to work with others and deliver it,” Carter said. “You can open your mouth and sing on pitch, but to know how to deliver the feeling about what you’re doing — that’s what separates the real artists from the amateurs.” 

B.B. King once said “The blues are three L’s, and that would be living, loving, and, hopefully, laughing.” 

None of us may own the blues. 

However, when Bixler sings a blues song, she owns one’s admiration, and all who listen feel her sense of lessons learned while living, loving and laughing.