Sat 2/13 @ 8PM
“I’m a late bloomer musically,” says Lauren Lanzaretta. “It took me a while to find my sound, but I finally have an album out and it’s something to build on.”
The singer-songwriter is referring to the 2014 release of her recent well-received album, Naked Soul. Chuck Yarborough, the Plain Dealer‘s pop music critic called it, “One of the best albums I’ve ever heard.” Jeff Neisel from Scene Magazine said, “The debut from Lauren Lanzaretta effectively channels Aretha Franklin and other soul/R&B greats, calling attention to one of Northeast Ohio’s rising talents.”
Naked Soul was Lauren’s first self-proclaimed “real project” that was authentically all her — her vision, her words, her videos and her message. “It was an artistic coming-out, as in I allowed myself to be vulnerable enough to finally put myself out there,” she says.
Lauren did a few shows last year, but mainly she spent a lot of time writing and recording new music. She’s also been producing her next music video, “See To Believe.” On Fri 2/13, she will be taking the stage at the Grog Shop, her first show of the year. This sort of earmarks the launch of her new music.
“I’m back at it and coming out with a bunch of new stuff,” says Lauren. “Those who appreciate live music and live bands should definitely come. Uptowne Buddha is an amazing funk/jazz band featuring an amazing horn section with a full band. Plus, I have a seven-piece band as well. It’s gonna be a super vibe-y show.”
“We are all gonna have a lot of fun and enjoy the night — be unpredictable and just let the night take us,” she continues. “I’ve refreshed my style a little bit. It’s still soulful, but I’m more in the soul/R&B zone. Some of my old stuff almost flirted with country a little bit. I’m definitely infusing more R&B into my music and working with producers to give me a fresh sound.”
Yes, Lauren is deep in her music groove, but the first song she wrote was in 7th grade. She’s been writing music and poetry ever since. She learned how to produce from the first collaborative album she did with DJ Scrilla in 2012. She applied that knowledge to Naked Soul and has been seriously producing music for the past five years.
“My new music video involves me playing basketball. I was a point guard in high school and my highest score was 52 points. I’m an athlete too, although many people know me as this girly Amy Winehouse type when I am on stage, but really, I have a lot of different sides to me,” says Lanzaretta. “Also, people are sometimes intimidated by me because I’m not the most outgoing person, so they assume I am a bitch or something. But I have a tender heart and when people get to know me, they see I love people and am passionate about helping people.”
Although Lanzaretta’s new album (set to be complete later this year) is not yet named, she has a few ideas.
“This album will be deeper and spiritual, as I am showing people my authentic self and all sides of me. I’m not holding back and writing music based on people’s expectations. I am a lot of things, and I want to write about all the things I go through, not just part of me,” she shares.
Her new single, “See To Believe” will debut on Tue 2/16. The sound is heavily influenced by one of her favorite artists, Justin Timberlake. The song will be available everywhere for purchase, but she is also giving it away as a free download on her SoundCloud.
“I think the overall theme to my new music is just breaking through to who I really am, to be confident in who I truly am, to show people authenticity and imperfection — that I am a work in progress, that I am powerful but also vulnerable. Right now in our world, people crave authenticity, true love and true purpose. They want to feel that people care, and I just want to be an example in showing that you can be 100% authentically yourself and that’s okay,” Lanzaretta says.
“You don’t have to label yourself, or put on a show to impress people. You can have a lot of different sides, you can change your mind and you can take risks. Putting my music out is always a risk, but I want to show people that I’m real — and if I’m real, they can be real too. Let’s all be real and show each other we care. Instead of separating, let’s bond together. Let’s cling to those who are different instead of pushing them away. Let’s celebrate our differences and learn from each other. Let’s heal each other and love other races. Let’s heal the past, so we can all have a better future,” Lauren concludes.
Doors open at 8pm. Show starts at 9pm. MC opens, Uptowne Buddha is next, and then Lauren takes the stage. Tickets are $8-$10.