On her third CD, Sin Sick, wildly original spoken-word artist and master storyteller MINTON SPARKS lays out her poems like a desperate ransom. For listeners it is sweet release. The ache and weight of this collection takes us from sin to salvation and back again. Legendary songwriter John Prine says of Sin Sick: "It's humanity with humidity, all told humorously with humility - and just what the doctor ordered."
Sparks' debut on Dualtone, Middlin' Sisters, was "one of the finest spoken word recordings issued in America in more than ten years" according to reviewer Thom Jurek. On that recording she had a chance to collaborate with the late, legendary, Waylon Jennings, and current singer/songwriter sensation Darryl Scott. Her second CD, This Dress, won Spoken Word Record of the Year in 2004 with the Just Plain Folk Music Awards, and got the nod from the Chicago Sun Times for Top Five Off the Beaten Path Records of 2003. "This Dress" features collaborations with artists like Keb' Mo' and Irish singer, Maura O'Connell.
Sin Sick, produced by Grammy winning Gary Paczosa, takes us down into the soul's dark struggle but we come up out of her words washed over, delivered. The title cut reveals a man twisted into thinking it's better to kill himself rather than pay the spiritual wages of the sin of divorce. And it only gets better... Nickel Creek's, Chris Thile, divines a heartbreakingly pure mandolin interpretation of the moonshine cut, "White Lightening" and has us following Sparks "deep off into her family's dark woods". It is on her pilgrimage poem, "Eastern Star", that listeners are invited to "wind up wandering back home, into their very own Promise-land". Sparks brings back piano virtuoso, Steve Conn, on two cuts "Sin Sick" and "South of Decent"; and he adds accordion on the other- worldly "Gypsy". Abigail Washburn's banjo on "Peeping Tom" is simple, beautiful and haunting. These musicians perfectly compliment Sparks live foil, John Jackson,
Minton Sparks unique brand of poetry has appeared on National Public Radio's, Weekend All Things Considered, the BBC's Bob Harris Show and the internationally syndicated WoodSongs Old-Time Radio Hour, which is heard in over 13 countries world-wide as well as being cybercast on the internet. Performed at New York City's Bowery Ballroom opening for the likes of Ben Folds, and at the Bowery Poetry Club in the village, She received rave reviews recently in Santa Barbara, California at the Trinity Backstage Songwriter Series; also she performed at Oxford, Mississippi's Thacker Mountain Radio Show, Nashville's Bluebird Café', Station Inn, Mercy Lounge, Douglas Corner, Sutlers' Talkabilly Theater, Davis Kidd Book Sellers, and the Southern Festival of Books. Minton Sparks travels extensively, performing at various Universities, clubs, and music and poetry festivals sharing her brand of performance poetry and her workshops on creative writing with audiences nationwide