Mercier is a singer-songwriter, harmony vocalist and violin/fiddle player. She grew up in Westport, Connecticut where she studied classical music (appearing in a concert with Itzhak Perlman on his first American tour) and attended the University of Colorado at Boulder. She was involved in the Civil Rights, Antiwar and Women's movements from a young age, and attended the first Woodstock Festival and Summer of Love in Haight-Ashbury. Mercier moved into New York after college and performed frequently at Kenny's Castaways, Folk City, Broadway Charlie's and CBGB's. Gigs at New York's Lone Star Cafe led to a Texas connection resulting in her move to Austin.
Mercier lived in Los Angeles for the period 1987-1992 where she won "Female Vocalist of the Year" from the Los Angeles Chapter of the California Country Music Association in 1992 and was inducted into the Academy of Country Music, despite being a blues (not country) singer; she has won additional awards and recognition (see "Awards and Honors") since returning to Austin. Mercier was invited by Champ Hood to become a featured vocalist with his band, the Threadgill's Troubadours, which played every Wednesday at Threadgill's in Austin, and later at Gruene Hall, until Hood's passing in 2001.
Mercier has released three albums on Wild Cantinas Records, with a new album to be released in 2014, and has been part of numerous compilation projects (see Discography on the Music Page). She continues to perform regularly in Texas and plans to do more touring and performing in the future.
Mandy Mercier As Musician:
Mandy began studying violin as a child and has continued this instrument, working as a side musician to other friends; Mandy enjoys the role of "backup player" as her second love along with performing her own material.
As a fiddle player and harmony vocalist, Mandy Mercier has worked professionally with Lucinda Williams, Billy Joe Shaver, Steve Forbert, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Butch Hancock, Joe Ely, Townes Van Zandt, Blaze Foley, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Rosie Flores, Charlie Robison, Tom Pacheco, Willy DeVille, Mick Ronson, David Rodriguez, Angela Strehli, Rusty Wier, Chris Gaffney, Ted Roddy, Champ Hood, Walter Hyatt and David Ball, Shake Russell, Dana Cooper, Sisters Morales, Vince Bell and Rick Nafey, and has also appeared onstage with Willie Nelson, Stevie Ray Vaughan, B.W. Stevenson, John Stewart, Doug Sahm, Gene Clark, Bob Neuwirth, Geoff Muldaur, Chris Holzhaus, Jimmy LaFave and Lyle Lovett.
The Austin American-Statesman says of Mandy:
The Houston Public News reinforces that statement with:
Mandy's new album, "Singer in a Roadhouse Band" has WON the Academy Award of Distinction by the Academy of Texas Music. The awards were announced at the Texas Music Awards ceremony in Linden, Texas on July 7, 2011. We are incredibly honored by this award and congratulate all our fellow nominees and award recipients.
Billboard World Song Contest 2008 (15th Annual), "Wild Dreams of the Shy Boys," (HM/prizes)
Mandy was nominated as Singer-Songwriter of the Year 2008 by the Academy of Texas Music. Awards show May 3, 2008 in Palestine, Texas. This is a statewide award limited 5 nominees. Mandy performed in the Awards show with Shake Russell's band, winner of "Best Vocal Group" and "Entertainer of the Year," and appeared with Gary P. Nunn in the show finale. For more information see www.texasmusicawards.org.
Great American Song Contest 2004, Contemporary Acoustic/Folk honor award for "Wild Dreams of the Shy Boys."
Austin Chronicle Music Poll, "Strings, (14)" (winner: Champ Hood) 1997
"Music City Texas" awards, 1994: "Female Vocalist Acoustic (HM)," "Female Vocalist, Rock (3rd)" "Female Vocalist, Blues (HM)," "Good Attitude (HM)," "Fiddle/Violin (HM)," "Woman of the Year (HM)," "Female Instrumentalist (HM)," "Female Vocalist, Overall (HM)," "Female Songwriter (HM)," "Acoustic Act (HM)."
"M-TV Beach House Band," Honorable Mention, 1994
Academy of Country Music, inducted 1992-93
"Female Vocalist of the Year," Los Angeles Chapter, California Country Music Association, 1992