Date: Thursday, July 19, 2012
Start Time: 8:00 PM
Event Type: Concerts, Special Events
Last Updated: June 08, 2012
B.G.T.Y TourLedisiwith Eric BenetLedisi wanted to make a few bold artistic changes this time out. But just before she started work on her sophomore Verve release, Turn Me Loose, she hit a wall. The singer-songwriter had a bad case of writer's block that stretched for six months. Ledisi was petrified as she tried to figure out how to follow up her 2007 Verve debut, Lost & Found. The album garnered strong reviews and two Grammy nominations, including one for best new artist."It was the pressure of coming back after all the success with Lost & Found and trying to figure out, 'Who am I? Who is Ledisi now?'" says the New Orleans native. "Before, I wondered do people get me. Now it's like, 'Ok, we know you. What are you gonna do now?'" A friend gave Ledisi an album to check out, hoping the music would start the creative juices flowing again. It was Buddy Miles' 1970 soul-rock classic, Them Changes. "I had never heard it before," Ledisi says. "Once I heard it, I wanted to be able to be free on the new album. On my previous album, I was contained a little bit. But I said on my next project that I was going to be off the chain vocally. I promised to be more honest and talk about stuff that people don't like to talk about. I've always done that. But on this album, I went for everything." Inspired by the freewheeling music of Buddy Miles, Ledisi now had a direction. But she decided to push herself even further by reaching out to different collaborators, something she hadn't done before."Usually, I just come in, like 'I want this. Take that out,'" Ledisi says. "This time, I laid back a little more and that was new for me. I wanted to go for the ride. It was frustrating, because everybody had different energies and I had to adjust. They weren't crazy. I felt crazy," she says, laughing. "But I made myself gothrough the different changes." Acclaim from Lost & Found boosted Ledisi's profile in the industry. So she was able to secure some of urban music's most respected producers, including Grammy winners Raphael Saadiq and Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis.She also reunited with producer Rex Rideout, who contributed greatly to the sound of Lost & Found. But for Turn Me Loose, Ledisi didn't want to play it safe. With help from the four other producers (Ivan & Carvin, Chief Xcel, Chucky Thompson & Fyre Dept), the artist braided brilliant strains of the different sounds she loved while growing up in Oakland, Calif. Rock, blues, classic soul, funk and hip-hop are all fused together throughout Turn Me Loose. Ledisi often merges the old with the new. The funky title track, for instance, updates the sassy grooves of vintage Stax. As a tribute to Buddy Miles, Ledisi does a cover of "Them Changes" as a bonus track on the new album. The artist flirts with different genres throughout, but her elastic, Chaka Khan-influenced vocals still anchor everything. The approach comes close to matching the let-it-all-go energy of her stage shows. The process of working with different collaborators was challenging initially but ultimately rewarding. "Every step I made, I fought it," Ledisi says, shaking her head. "But I still made the step. I never wrote songs with different people. But what I found is that it's nice. Where I left off, somebody else took over."
Location: Club Nokia
Address: 800 West Olympic Blvd Suite A335, Los Angeles
Ledisi powered by clubZone.com