Meet Samuel & Kimberly Barker of Brightwire

“Having any success in music comes from many other people in that world being ridiculously generous, supportive and kind to you. No matter how skilled you are, you won’t do much without the support of the entire community. I feel like my entire path has been filled with kindness and inclusion.” – Samuel Barker Read More

Baytown band looks for the light on music scene

Samuel and Kim Barker have a dilemma. They would love to be part of the live music scene in Baytown. Problem is… there really isn’t one.

The Central Heights couple, along with fellow musician Michael Helfenstein, make up the folk-rock group Brightwire. Their sound is mellow, their lyrics poignant. With echoes of John Prine, Tom Petty and The Little River Band, the music washes over you like the cooling water of a running brook in the hot Texas sun.

This is a working band – touring and writing and recording original music. And they haven’t gone unnoticed. Houston Chronicle music critic Joey Guerra included Brightwire’s “Cracked, Flawed and Frayed” album in his list of best Houston albums of 2021. Read More

Music critic Joey Guerra names the 12 best Houston albums of 2021

11. ‘Cracked, Flawed and Frayed,’ Brightwire: There’s something charmingly unvarnished about folk-rock trio Brightwire. That appeal is nicely captured on this album, a solid showcase for their vocal harmonies and playing skills. Read More

Brightwire Brings It All Together for New Album

The old adage says a union is more powerful than the sum of its parts. That message is at the heart of Cracked, Flawed and Frayed, the new album by the Houston band Brightwire. The record’s 11 tracks espouse togetherhood and feel very timely as we emerge from the solitude of COVID quarantine to a world of awaiting family and friends. Read More


Brightwire – Cracked, Flawed and Frayed – 9/10

A very diverse listen that welcomes dobro and washboard, among many others, Samuel and Kimberly Barker and Michael Helfenstein have crafted one of the most memorable folk albums in recent history, and the contributions from John Stoll (electric guitar, baritone guitar, harmonica, upright bass, theremin), and Liz Sloan McGovern (violin, fiddle) further solidify Cracked, Flawed and Frayed as essential listening in 2021. Read More


Review: Brightwire – Cracked, Flawed and Frayed

Brightwire stands before us, Cracked, Flawed and Frayed, hoping their art is something we might take. It is the humble opinion of this particular music fan you do just that. Roll down the windows, take the long way home, and slow things down a little with Houston, Texas-based Brightwire’s sophomore album. Read More


Meet Samuel & Kimberly Barker | Members of folk-rock band Brightwire

“On Our New Album That We Recorded During The Shutdown, Which Just Came Out, I Sang, Played Guitar, Bass And Drums. That’s Really The Reason Why I Have Pursued An Artistic Career: It Is An Avenue To Perpetual Growth, Endless Inspiration And A Community That Builds Its Members Up Rather Than Tear Them Apart.” – Samuel Barker Read More


Adobe & Teardrops: Episode 155

Cracked Edges appeared in a recent episode of the Adobe and Teardrops podcast: Episode 155

Adobe & Teardrops

Review: Brightwire – Cracked, Flawed and Frayed

The rooted-Country/Americana style of Brightwire, paired in the video with the road trip views of New Mexico and Arizona, I-40 and Route 66, and the juxtaposition of unrelenting beauty in a time of unyielding stress, brings a sense of warmth and balance on what is an uphill climb for each of us individually. Read More