First and foremost, singer-songwriter Laura Warshauer is a storyteller, examining loss, love and life through her music. The twenty something year old New Jersey native crafts sonic gems, combining pop melodies and flourishes of rock, while her lyrical sensibility hearkens back to songsmiths like Joni Mitchell and Fiona Apple.
Laura’s self-titled seven-song debut EP was recently released via Pink Chariot/Island Records. The disc features orchestral textures that perfectly compliment her warm, ethereal vocals. Warshauer describes her sound best, “There’s definitely a rock sensibility, but it’s really about grand melodies. I have a very classic pop structure in terms of my writing style, but lyrically, I offer a unique angle.”
The songs spoke loud and clear, and Laura’s talent caught the ear of Island Def Jam Chairman Antonio “L.A.” Reid. He received one of her demos, and had to go see her play. “He came to a Sunday night rehearsal, and his hands were in the air when he heard me. Afterwards, he said if you want it you have a home with Island Records.” Their partnership has set the stage for Laura’s EP this fall and her next full-length CD, Such A Lovely Place, produced by Rich Keller, due out in Spring 2009.
We caught up with Laura for a quick Q&A, and she told us everything that was on her mind!
CWG: LA Reid signed you to Island/Def Jam after one performance. Reid has guided many artists to great success. What advise has he given you as your career is starting?
The same advice that Lionel Richie recently gave me - "Just keep going!"
CWG: What have you learned busking in the subway?
You see what catches and holds people's attention. You learn about inhabiting any sort of environment and making it your own.
CWG: Your music has been described as a Joni Mitchell sound with a 60s influence. What is it about the 60's that inspires you?
Music brought people together; it was (and is) both a catharsis and a refuge. Women were empowered, and songwriters created entire movements with the strength of their lyrics and delivery.
When I got signed by LA Reid, he said the raw passion of my stage performance made him feel like he was in the back in the 1960's.
CWG: You are apart of Musicians On Call (a group that plays for hospital patients). How did you get involved with the organization? How can others get involved?
I got involved at 16, after another songwriter heard me play and told me about the organization. As a volunteer, I get the privilege to play songs for pediatric cancer patients and their families at Sloan-Kettering Hospital in New York City.
Singing at the hospital, you realize that something simple can be so powerful. To find out more please visit musiciansoncall.org
CWG: What can we expect from your album "Such A Lovely Place"?
Something classic yet modern with a sound that is all at once unique and familiar.
CWG: What are your goals for your career?
I want to rock stadiums and be doing that in 25 years.
CWG: What did you learn from recording your EP and how did you apply it to recording your album?
I learned about feeling and being free to create and see where it takes me. The possibilities are limitless, and it is empowering to embrace that reality and run with it.
CWG: You have been described as a storyteller, how do you come up with your songs?
Quite simply, I write songs about things that move me. I am constantly writing; Anything and everything can be a source of inspiration.
CWG: Is there an artist or producer you would like to work with and why?
U2. Their live shows are unlike anything I have ever experienced. They are magnetic; there is something almost other-worldy when those four musicians take the stage. If I could sing with Bono I would be thrilled.
CWG: Your live shows have been described as compelling. Are you looking forward to touring for the new album? What can we expect for your live shows?
I can't wait to tour. Being in the studio is amazing, but it is really on stage where the interaction between artist and audience enables the songs come to life in the way that they can and should.
From my live shows, expect the unexpected. It's about connecting with people; my voice, the songs, the presentation are simply the vehicles to convey emotion.
Like Laura? Check her out on Myspace.
Laura Warshauer's Compelling Secret Revealed
chicks with guns|reality check|