Sunday, December 9, 2012

Year-End Favorites Pt. II: Lianne La Havas

The major theme of this year's favorites is-to put it bluntly-amazingly fucking talented young people who are incredibly mature in their talent...

...A few weeks back I was listening to some old early 90s favs and was wondering when the next crop of young ass-kickers was going to arrive and turn things on their ear.
Being a lover of the hard and furious sounds that marked the emergence of the greats from my youth (Nirvana et. al.) I have been holding my breath for something similar. I am sure they are out there, but while thinking about what I was going to focus on for my year-end series I realized something: There was already a batch of  'kids' who fit my wishes in almost every way except that they are much more subtle and sophisticated than what I was expecting.
This isn't a bad thing.
While I don't expect to be seeing any of the four young people I will be showing you this month smashing guitars on stage, I do expect all of them to have long, influential, and successful careers.

First up is the beautiful and soulful Lianne La Havas:

You can read details about Lianne La Havas here.
The short version is: She was born to do what she is doing and thankfully the right people (Once again KCRW are probably the heroes here) have taken notice.
I had a hard time believing this video was live having heard the studio version.
This woman-at the ripe old age of 22-has already established a well-defined sound of her own.
If you listen closely to this track and then listen to others you will hear three things very clearly: A very distinct, jazz-infused guitar style and sound, very honest, deeply personal lyrics, and a voice holding the polish, control, and restraint of someone twice her age.
A lot to absorb in one sentence? Yes, but there is a reason I am trying to jam all of this into a short space-it all sounds so easy that you might not appreciate it at first listen.
Listen again and tell me I am wrong.
Then try to tell me she won't be around, making amazing music in 10 or 20 years.
Cheers! C.

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