Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘Monday Memos’ I have the honor of sharing an interview I recently did with two-time Grammy nominee Lisa Loeb! You may know Lisa from her platinum-selling hit #1 single ‘Stay (I Missed You), her various voice-over roles in shows such as ‘Spider-Man: The New Animated Series’, ‘Jake and the Never Land Pirates’, ‘Doc McStuffins’, etc., her eyewear line, or the various other projects that Lisa has had over the past two decades. In this interview we discuss Lisa’s music, eyewear line, her charitable foundation ‘Camp Lisa’, her musical influences, and so much more! Also please keep an eye out for Lisa’s singles ‘3,2,1 Let Go’, and ‘The Disappointing Pancake’, which will be released on vinyl via Blacktop Records on July 8th, 2016. You can also pick up the records at any of Lisa’s upcoming shows:
June 21 – Wolf Trap Theater-in-the-Woods, Virginia
June 22 – Sundown Music Series, Haddon Heights, NJ
July 10 – Oakville Children’s Festival, Ontario
July 11 – Stratford Masonic Concert Hall – Stratford, Ontario (SOLD OUT)
July 12 – Stratford Masonic Concert Hall – Stratford, Ontario
July 13 – Adelaide Hall – Toronto, Ontario
So now let’s get to the interview! Ready? Ok, let’s go!!!
Celinda: First of all I would like to thank you so much for agreeing to do this interview. Personally I am such a huge fan of your music, and I know that my readers are excited to hear about all of your new projects. Since we are on the topic of music, what/who would you say originally sparked your interest in music? Also, which bands/artists have influenced your music that would surprise your fans?
Lisa: That’s such a huge question. There are so many musicians and performers who inspired me. My family, the music around me growing up, my friends’ taste in music, the music I was played at school and the music we sang and played at school, music I learned in piano and later guitar lessons, music on the radio. Wow, so much music all around me. I usually think of The Police as the band that made me want to play guitar in a band and write music. I also loved David Bowie’s dramatic singing, writing, storytelling, and all-around aura. I’m hugely influenced by Led Zeppelin, Olivia Newton John, The Cure, and soft pop from the 1970’s like Bread.
Celinda: I can definitely hear all of those influences in your music. So, how does it feel that Stay (I Missed You) is still such a recognizable and beloved song 22 years after its’ initial release?
Lisa: I love it. I think it’s incredible that people connect with me and my song so many years later. People really have sweet nostalgia as well as a current identification with the song. I think that’s why it’s still so powerful so many years later.
Celinda: Now let’s move on to the live action acting you’ve done on television and for films. Did you always want to foray into acting or was it something that you grew to love later in life?
Lisa: I always wanted to be actor, maybe even before I wanted to be a musician. I like the idea of being able to try on different characters and jobs and personalities. (That just sounded crazy.) I think it’s amazing to put yourself in another person’s shoes. I loved doing theater in school and college and always studied theater during the summers. I still use my acting training a lot during live performances and interpreting my own songs night after night. I still hope to spend more time training and doing more acting soon!
Celinda: That’s so exciting, I know I speak for all of your fans when I say we’re excited to see which acting projects you might take on in the future! Along with your live action acting, you’ve also voiced numerous characters on various videos games and television shows such as: ‘Spider-Man: The New Animated Series’, ‘Jake and the Never Land Pirates’, ‘Doc McStuffins’, etc., do you feel that your experience as a recording artist has helped you become more comfortable and confident as a voice actress?
Lisa: My acting experience coupled with recording music in the studio has really come together for voice acting. It’s a place I feel really comfortable and love the collaboration of working with producers, writers, directors, and engineers to come up with the right sound for the animated shows, commercials, and other voice work I do.
Celinda: I would like to take a moment to mention that I love your eyewear line; all of the pieces are gorgeous and very fashionable. Is there a story behind the creation of your eyewear line, or is it something you’ve always wanted to do?
Lisa: The eyewear line is a dream come true. I’m a huge fan of glasses and finding the perfect pair for myself! I think glasses can add so much to a person’s face and can help express how a person sees life and how they relate to others. I love that my eyewear line can help women look beautiful, stylish, flirty, classic, and confident. People look to me for that and now I can finally help people. Literally, fans and people who like my glasses and my look stop me on the street to talk about glasses. I thought it was time for me to get more involved. We have lots of tortoiseshell, pops of color, shapes and sizes for different faces and skin tones. I love when people tell me that they wear their glasses because I wear my glasses.
Celinda: All of the pieces are amazing; you definitely have a great eye for fashion. Moving on, I would like to firstly congratulate you for all of the accomplishments that your organization ‘The Camp Lisa Foundation’ has achieved; it is truly inspiring to see artists give back. What would you say has been the most rewarding part of ‘Camp Lisa’, and what do you hope the foundation will accomplish in the future?
Lisa: It’s amazingly rewarding knowing that kids are going to have a summer camp experience, helping them build their confidence and character as well as connecting them to summer fun. I hope the foundation can continue to send more kids to summer camp! Buying my Camp Lisa record, my “Wake Up!” Blend coffee from https://www.coffeefool.com/collections/charity-coffees and making direct donations to me through The Camp Lisa Foundation through www.LisaLoeb.com are great ways that you can help!
Celinda: Your foundation’s mission is truly beautiful and will definitely continue making a positive impact on numerous children. So I read on your website that you earned a degree in comparative literature from Brown University; did you always aspire to become an author? Also, what inspired you to write children’s books?
Lisa: I really should have studied theater, music, psychology- all areas that interested me the most, but at the time I felt I needed a liberal arts major, and that was it. I’ve always enjoyed interpretation, and meta-thinking, and overthinking, so it seemed like a good major. I think it’s important to spend quiet connected time with kids, away from the TV and the computers and phones. These illustrated books help a parent/caregiver/teacher do just that. These books are fun to explore and read and re-read. I made two kids’ books of lyrics, activities, and recipes for kids ‘Lisa Loeb’s Silly Sing-Along: The Disappointing Pancake and Other Zany Songs’ and ‘Lisa Loeb’s Songs for Movin’ & Shakin’: The Air Band Song and Other Toe-tapping Tunes’ and I think a lot of those songs would make really great board books one song at a time. I have a children’s book up my sleeve now too!
Celinda: That’s so interesting! I know we’re all super excited to read and hear this new book! Moving back to the topic of music for a second, your singles ‘3,2,1 Let Go’ and ‘The Disappointing Pancake’ will be released on 7inch vinyl on July 8th, 2016 in Canada via Blacktop Records. Personally I love the throwback feel of vinyl that you just can’t get with digital or even cd releases, but what inspired you to release these singles on vinyl?
Lisa: “3,2,1 Let Go!” is the kind of song you want to hear on vinyl, and since there’s only one song on each side, you really can focus on listening over and over to each song, since once you hear the songs, you’ll want to listen over and over. ; ) “The Disappointing Pancake” is one of my most popular songs, taken from both the ‘Camp Lisa’ record and the ‘Silly Sing-Along’ book, so I thought I’d highlight it here on this special release. Plus, even though it was originally written for kids, I think grownups enjoy hearing it- a story that’s different from your lost love song.
Celinda: Thank you again Lisa for taking the time to speak with me today, it was truly an honor. Lastly, is there anything you would like to say to your fans who are reading this interview?
Lisa: I can’t wait to come to Canada! It’s been really too long since I’ve been there. Yay! Yay for us. I can’t wait to see you!
Keep up with everything Lisa is doing:
Eyewear Line: http://www.lisaloebeyewear.com/
Philippe now has a Facebook set up for his class (which is called Daddy Daughter Hair Factory), and wants to continue to hold classes for any fathers who are interested. His pictures have had a HUGE response on various social media sites, and will definitely continue to amaze us. I think that this is such an important story to share because we live in a world were we always hear about all of the evils of our society. So it’s nice to see a father who is willing to use his time and skills to help other fathers who struggle with trying to be a mother & a father to their children. Hopefully stories like this will remind us that little actions can really change lives.
Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘YouTube Wednesday’ we’re going to talk about a band that a lot of you may already be familiar with. If you’ve ever heard of the indie pop rock band ‘King The Kid’, then you’re already familiar with the AMAZING new band that we’re going to talk about, ‘Future Sunsets’. After ‘King The Kid’ disbanded, two of the members, David Michael Frank and Jose Mostajo, decided to evolve their sound and Future Sunsets was born. In 9 short months, Future Sunsets has already proven to have a loyal fanbase, with 7,421 subscribers, and 288,047 total channel views. So please read on to see why you will have Future Sunsets’ music stuck in your head all year long! Ready? Ok, let’s go!!!
The first video that we’re going to talk about is Future Sunsets cover of ‘Rather Be’ by Clean Bandit feat Jess Glynne, which was uploaded September 30th, 2014. I really liked their take on this song, because they kept the upbeat fun vibe that made this song so popular, but also added their own flair that makes this rendition unique. This song was a VERY strong start for Future Sunsets’ YouTube channel, and will definitely make you excited to see more from the band (you check out the video below to find out for yourself). The next video that we’re going to talk about is Future Sunsets’ cover of ‘Bailando’ by Enrique Iglesias, which was uploaded on December 31st, 2014. I thought that this was such a interesting choice for the band, and they were honestly able to pull it off very well. It’s fun to see a band you like take a chance with a song that’s a little different than what they typically do, but equally entertaining. You will definitely play this video over and over, and love it more everytime.
Next up we have Future Sunsets’ cover of ‘Iris’ by Goo Goo Dolls, which was uploaded on March 21st, 2015. This is a song that EVERYONE knows, whether you’re a fan of this genre of music or not. Because of this, there is definitely a added pressure to make an amazing cover, and the band perfectly hits this mark. They are able to not only make a rendition of this classic that is very well done and keeps your attention, but are also able to really make you feel the emotions that the lyrics convey. This cover definitely deserves 5 smiley face (because as I’ve said before, smiley faces are cooler than stars). The last video that we’re going to talk about isn’t a cover, but is a really awesome original song that you just gotta check out! Future Sunsets released the lyric video for their song ‘Without Your Love’ on December 16th, 2014 (you can check out the video below). This is a really cool song that has catchy lyrics, and upbeat vibe, and will instantly hook you as soon as you start to listen to it. It has a lot of the same elements that made fans fall in love with this band, but also show that they are constancy evolving and making their sound even better. I could definitely see them not only seamlessly integrating into mainstream music, but also stand out in such a way that will make them a cross-genre hit.
Keep up with everything Future Sunsets is doing:
YouTube: Future Sunsets
Twitter: Future Sunsets
Instagram: Future Sunsets
Tumblr: Future Sunsets
Hello people of the internet! For this ‘YouTube Wednesday’ blog, I am going to introduce you to a group that I have recently become obsessed with. I first heard of them, when they started following me on Twitter, so I decided to listen to their YouTube covers and original music. I have to say that my first impression of them was surprise…as to why I hadn’t ever heard of them before! Luckily, after reading this blog, I know that you’ll check them out and became as obsessed with them as I am ( you’re welcome). If you like country super groups such as Rascal Flatts and The Band Perry, then you’ll love Ashton Lane. They are a country group from Scotland, which consists of lead singer Ester O’Connor, her brother, and her husband. I wasn’t able to find too much more biographical information about them however; I will tell you what I think of their music, and their overall sound as a group. Shall we begin? Great, let’s go!
Upon clicking on Ashton Lane’s YouTube page, I decided to listen to their cover of Rascal Flatts hit song ‘Come Wake Me Up’ Come Wake Me Up Rascal Flatts- Rascal Flatts Come Wake Me Up ASHTON LANE COVER – YouTube, because honestly I thought that if they could do a good job on this cover, then I would have a good idea of their vocal talents. I used this song as a way to measure how good the group is, because Gary LeVox (the guy who usually sings the lead vocals in Rascal Flatts’ songs) is a phenomenal vocalist, so I thought that if Ester O’Connor could handle the same notes, then that would show us how good the band is. After I listened to their take on the hit track, I decided that this group is definitely the real deal. First of all, O’Connor has a beautiful voice. Not only is her voice technically correct, but she is also able to perfectly express the emotions within the songs she sings. The group’s harmonies were also very tight (which honestly can be a very difficult task to master), and shows how meticulous and serious the group is about their craft. The next cover song I listened too was the group’s cover of Katy Perry’s hit ‘Wide Awake’ Wide Awake- Katy Perry Wide Awake- Wide Awake Katy Perry (ASHTON LANE KITCHEN SESSIONS) – YouTube. Now I know that you’re probably wondering why I listened to this cover if Ashton Lane is a country group (just stay with me, I promise I’ll connect the importance of this cover back to the group’s primary genre), well the answer is simple…I wanted to see the group’s emotion depth. Now I know that I just raved about the group’s lead singer’s ability to capture emotion in her vocal delivery however, I wanted to see if she could really tap into the vulnerability that Katy Perry shows in the song. O’Connor definitely demonstrated that she is not afraid to completely commit to the emotional content of a track, which is a trait that is absolutely necessary in country music (see, I told you that I would connect this cover back to the group’s primary genre). The final cover video that I listened to was the group’s cover of Taylor Swift’s infectious track ‘We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together Taylor Swift, We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together – YouTube, (on a side not, I only looked at three cover videos, for the purpose of reviewing the group’s musical abilities…later on I listened to all of the group’s videos and my obsession with them only grew J). My reasoning for choosing this cover, is that I wanted to see if they could cover a fun song. At this point I knew that Ashton Lane could make me cry, and could make me look deep within myself for the answers to life’s problems however, I wanted to see if the group could make me want to dance…as excepted, they did not disappoint! The group’s execution of this sassy tune showed me that they can certainly handle producing a good quality mainstream country hit.
Now that I knew that Ashton Lane could put a cool spin on an already popular song, I was curious as to whether they could create original music that would have the same effect. Luckily, the group has a link on their videos which allows you to receive 7 free songs from their album ‘Magic in the Air’. Upon listening to three of these songs, I realized that there is no reason why this group is not already famous. Their original material is honestly very good, and I found myself humming along to the catchy tracks within a few rotations of the songs. The group has their full album available for purchase on ITunes, as well as another album entitled ‘Other Side’, and several singles. I would suggest purchasing all of the music that Ashton Lane has put out, because you will quickly become OBSESSED with them.
When I first decided to listen to Ashton Lane’s YouTube videos, I honestly had no idea what to expect. I hoped that I would find a good emerging country band that I could introduce to all of you, and that would be that. After listening to their music, I came to the conclusion that I had no idea what I had stumbled upon. I can say with a great deal of confidence that Ashton Lane will soon become a household name. I can definitely picture hearing their music on mainstream and country radio, as well as seeing them on every major award show…yea they are just that AMAZING! This group certainly showed me that they deserve to be in the fore front of everyone’s mind, and if a group can perform this amazingly with live vocals and two guitars, can you imagine what they can do with a full band and a lot of production behind them!? I personally cannot wait for Ashton Lane to become the next country super group. Trust me, the question is not a matter of IF the group will become a worldwide phenomenon, but rather WHEN this will happen. The group currently (as of December 17, 2013) has 45,659 Twitter followers, 10,487 likes on Facebook, and 7,225 subscribers on YouTube. My guess is they will become inescapable very soon, and you can say that you knew them when they were still music’s most well kept secret.
Here are some links so you can keep up with the group’s career J:
Facebook: Ashton Lane
YouTube: Ashton Lane – YouTube
*All photos and information used in this blog belong to Ashton Lane, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, countryschatter.com, eventim.co.uk, and all other original owners. I do not own anything in this blog. All opinions expressed in this blog are my own. I wrote this blog for entertainment purposes and no copyright infringement is intended.