Her songs have been covered by folks like Garth Brooks and Linda Thompson, but after two decades Cheryl Wheeler has a pretty low profile. Too bad, as she's clearly one of the more talented singer/songwriters out there. With her latest disc - her first since 1999's Sylvia Hotel - Wheeler serves up an album full of spare, bittersweet songs that yank at the heartstrings. It's not till you reach the two live tracks that Wheeler's sharp wit and refreshingly goofy side come out. Take It's The Phone, which pokes fun at pretentious mobile users who program classical ring tones on their phones. It shows Wheeler's strength isn't only the song but the stage.
Wheeler launches her CD at Hugh's Room Wednesday (February 23).