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Judge for Common Folk

Dallas, TX
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Portrait of Common Folk
The brink of the millennium birthed not only a new era, but also introduced the presence of a soulful new duo whose music would unify its average listeners down to the core. Blood brothers, Terry Williams and Tony Ballard, merged as a band to form Common Folk and brought reality to what was once a lifelong dream. Since that time, thousands have come to know and enjoy Common Folk’s original sound that could simply be described as Alternative Soul, or more appropriately coined as “Soul-ternative”. Originally from Dallas, Texas, the familial pair began entertaining around the city, thusly building a fan base that would take their performances far beyond Texas’ borders. By 2003, Common Folk had independently produced and released their first album, titled “Souled Out”, which reached audiences across the U.S. and world wide.The originality of Common Folk’s sound is achieved with the combination of textured vocals with smooth harmonies and rhythmic chording. It is a zestful recipe that pays homage to the likes of Earth, Wind, and Fire, Stevie Wonder, Donny Hathaway, John Legend, and Eric Benet while blending in a refreshing essence of uniqueness to stir the soul, awaken the ears, enlighten the mind, and move the body. The two members are equally gifted with vocal ranges that stretch at least four octaves. In addition, Williams and Ballard lack not in versatility as they are also highly talented musicians/producers capable of mixing it up across the board from hip-hop, to pop, to soulful romantic ballads and beyond.Common Folk has been nominated for The Dallas Observer Music Award in 2004 thru 2007 for Best R&B/Soul Act. The duo won the DOMA in 2005 for the same category. Common Folk were also finalists in the INTERNATIONAL SONGWRITING COMPETITION 2005-06 for three songs they wrote and produced. They have shared the stage and/or studio with artists like: Prince, Wyclef Jean, Kanye West, Bilal, Musiq Soulchild, Common, Erykah Badu, Life Jennings, Fat Joe, Luther Cambel, John Legend, Kim Fields, Bill Duke, Keyshia Cole, Blue October, Carl Thomas, Kem (Motown Artist), Dead Prez, Duggie Fresh, Brandy, Bun B, Montel Jordan, Jay Holiday, KC & JO JO, Ray J, Shelia E., Fonzworth Bentley, Jamie Foxx, Bowling for Soup, Calvin Richardson, Lupe Fiasco, and actress Kim Fields. Their television appearances include: The Sheryl Underwood Show, and being the house band for Rickey Smiley’s Big City Talent Show. Currently, Common Folk can be heard on the radio weekly on Rickey Smiley’s Morning Show on Radio One syndicated nationally.