áááUsually when you describe an up and
coming artist, you compare them to people
they sound like. Female singer/ songwriter,
piano = Tori Amos or Norah Jones... Next!
With Laura Distasi, a new songwriter out of
Boston, it's far easier to describe what her
music feels like. It feels like when you were a
kid and you lied about something, got caught,
and had to tearfully confess all. That rush of
honesty--when you cried and spilled your guts
and actually felt better afterwards--is kind of
what it feels like to listen to her music.
Somehow it is brave and harrowing and
beautiful and quiet and honest all at once. She
sings in a kind of broken whisper, like what
your diary would sound like if it could talk back.
The songs are deceptively intelligent. The
arrangements organic and intimate. Despite
being totally accessible, I can't think of
anybody she really sounds like; only people
who's music has a similar effect on me as a
listener--Radiohead, Elliott Smith, Nick Drake,
maybe Suzanne Vega at her warmest. There
is something hopeful in sad songs; that
anything worth lamenting is beautiful, or once
was, or could be. Distasi seems able to
articulate this better than any songwriter I have
ever heard. How could you possibly describe
what that sounds like?
áááIt all started with a little girl, sitting at the
piano, her legs dangling from the bench,
ignoring the lesson she was supposed to be
practicing and making up her own awkward
compositions instead. By high school these
had turned into actual songs, and so she
started playing at colleges, festivals, and
coffee shops around her home state of New
Jersey. Then came Berklee College of Music;
a lifetime of jazz, musical theatre, and
songwriting crammed into four quick years.
She was a regular in songwriting showcases
at Berklee. Simultaneously, Laura Distasi
started making noise on mp3.com, where she
raced to the top of the overall pop charts,
among the Jewels and Michelle Branchs of
the world. Laura has performed at some of the
most legitimate venues in the northeast, from
Club Passim and Toad in Cambridge to
Sidewalk CafΘ in New York City, sharing the
stage with Ellis Paul among others. Her
songs have been featured online at several
music websites, most recently
garageband.com and ic-multimedia.com.
Currently playing shows around Boston and
the Northeast, Laura is working on an album
to be released in the fall of 2004.