(Am I) Not Pretty Enough – Kasey Chambers

It’s so fitting this is the first song to appear in the music library project from Kasey Chambers because it’s the first song I ever heard from this outstanding Australian country music artist. I remember when, where and what I was doing when I first-heard this song. It was a hot summer day back in 2002 and I was driving my car through Crib Point on my way to Hastings in South East Victoria, Australia and I turned on the ABC radio (which always hosted great non-commercial music like the Go-Betweens etc) and I heard….

Am I not pretty enough
Is my heart too broken
Do I cry too much
Am I too outspoken

Don’t I make you laugh
Should I try it harder
Why do you see right through me

It was love at first hearing. It really was. The immediacy to which this song floored me I’ll never forget. I think that same day I picked up her album ‘Barricades and Brickwalls‘ which remains one of my top 10 favourite Australian albums.

Am I Not Pretty Enough was released as the album’s third single. What’s so fricken cool about this song is she wrote it to protest the commercial radio’s reluctance to play her stuff. Ironically it would be her big commercial breakthrough. According to wikipedia: The song “Not Pretty Enough” reached number-one on the Australian ARIA charts, going double platinum, and Chambers became the first musical act in Australian history to have an album and single sit at the top of the charts at the same time. In 2017, the song was selected for preservation in the National Film and Sound Archive’s Sounds of Australia collection. The album did not reach quite the same audience in the United States, not quite hitting the Billboard Hot 100.

Since there is plenty from Kasey to come in this project, I’ll provide more information and background as we progress through her song catalogue. So let this just be a small taste of things…

“The more I live, the more I learn. The more I learn, the more I realize, the less I know.”- Michel Legrand

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20 comments on “(Am I) Not Pretty Enough – Kasey Chambers
  1. macalder02 says:

    The video is very good, the song better. We will wait to continue listening to Kasey. Excellent weekend option.

    • Thanks Manual. The video in my opinion doesn’t reflect the song’s meaning or sound very well. When I first heard it, ‘the country’ vibe and musicmanship really impressed me. Have an excellent weekend.

  2. badfinger20 says:

    It’s funny…I just heard of another country artist that is known more in Australia…think she is from New Zealand last week…her name is Aly Cook…I really liked what I heard.

    I love the meaning of the song and her voice…really good song. Love this selection.

    • I’ll have too look up Aly Cook.
      I’m really chuffed you liked this song Bad.

      • badfinger20 says:

        I really like it…it sounds good…not like the commercial stuff that comes out of Nashville for the most part now. She sounds authentic and genuine.

        The best thing Nashville has right now is Kacey Musgraves.

      • The vídeo of Kasey in my post doesn’t do the song the least bit of service, but you’re right as far as the music and lyrics go. It’s very original and authentic.
        OK Kasey Musgraves is another artist I’ll be looking up when I have some spare time on my hands. I might need to start recording these names to my notepad app like I did with your movie recommendations.

      • badfinger20 says:

        When you said what the song was about…that made it all that much better.

        Funny I live here where Country is the music… but I like only a few.
        Musgraves not only is a great country singer but a beautiful lady. She actually wrote a song called…”I Want To Burn One With John Prine”… she is different from her peers but is being accepted now because she is so damn good.

      • Yes, the story behind the song is great. A lot of her great songs have these cool little stories behind them. ‘The Captain’ which proceeded ‘Not Pretty Enough’ is a good example.
        When I’m kid-free tomorrow afternoon I’ll look that song up you mentioned and listen to a few others from Musgrave. You’ve definitely wet my appetite to find out more about this talented lass.

      • badfinger20 says:

        I’ll look up more about your Kasey when I get home…we traded Kaseys
        Just type in her name in youtube and look around.

      • I’m just looking up Aly Cook and Casey Musgrave as I write this message.
        I like ‘Western Line’ from Aly Cook. It has a really old school country sound. That’s definitely going in the library. Also there are lot’s of Sydney (NSW – where I was born) references in it. I think my Mum would like it too.
        Kacey Musgraves ‘Rainbow’ and ‘Butterflies’ is sweet. Man, has she got some big number views on YT! It isn’t my type of music exactly, but I can see why she’s a big hit.

      • badfinger20 says:

        Yea Musgraves first stuff sounds old old but she is more modern now.
        I liked Barricades and Brickwalls by Kasey Chambers…I like her voice and the sound of the guitar is really good.

      • Kasey comes from real Australian country roots. Her family (and her) would go from ‘pub’ gig to pub gig in their car and pitch tent in the desert. She was a bit of a child prodigy in all of this until she broke out, but maintained that family band. Her father is still her lead guitarist. It’s a real rags to riches tale. One of the first songs I learnt on guitar was her ‘Nullabor Song’. Only someone who’d actually slept in the desert could write that.

      • badfinger20 says:

        That makes me like her even more. That is someone who deserves the success she is having…. not to mention her family. Makes me believe in the human spirit again.

      • It’s a lovely Australian ‘A once upon a time’ story, but real.
        Speaking of which, I was walking with my daughter this morning after going to the shops and she pointed at the moon still in the sky and then we went off on a two hour bent about the moon. We watched bits of Chazelle’s ‘First Man’ and my son cried when Armstrong lost his daughter, but man did they get a buzz (excuse the pun) after lift off to the moon. To see kids so interested in that gives me hope for the human race.
        I must buy the NASA DVD documentary when and if it comes out. The movie was sold out when I tried to see it.

  3. alycookmusic says:

    Hey guys .. If you want to listen the album is here https://alycook.lnk.to/CaughtInTheMiddle and thanks for your comments 🙂

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