Who would have thought a place called Beyond Q Bookshop would be the place to hold an intimate launch of the Folk kind.
It’s tucked away in an arcade in Western Creek, Canberra and at first you are in awe of the antiquities on the bookshelves. This is soon outdone by something you thought was a stuffed cat moving and the realisation that this is home for this particular feline.
You make your way through the shelves on the first floor and up the staircase to the second where you find a cafe and seating just the perfect size for a launch of this kind although more seating was needed as a medium sized audience was in attendance, more than was anticipated.
I arrived just in time to see Kim Yang the support artist for tonight do her set and after a brief intermission it was time to hear Lisa.
The first three tracks of the night were from the ‘Colours’ EP – Into The Fray, Sugar Coat and Lost Days.
Backing her melancholic voice with an acoustic guitar she gently takes us on a journey of original songs with heartfelt messages. At the end of this trio one understands she has written about the complexities of trying to be yourself in a world of diversity and judgement.
Between songs Lisa gives an engaging and honest account of her experiences, feelings and inspirations in writing each song. This is valuable to the audience as it gives an indication of mindset and how it was used to overcome adverse and confused feelings.
We continue on listening to renditions of songs which are not connected to the EP – A Girl Has No Name, 21st Century Child and Heart First whose titles alone are enough to slot them in under the same topic as the previous three.
At this point I slumped in my seat feeling completely captivated by the unfolding stories and the incorporation of folk melodies and rhythms in this intimate setting.
Lisa then had a short anecdotal story before performing the next song. It seems somehow that she ended up stumbling onto a great playlist for children on Spotify and she cheerfully quips it may have just been the best thing that happened to her. On the playlist was ‘Puff The Magic Dragon’ and it resonated with her so much that she deemed it a perfect fit for tonight’s launch as it resonated in themes about adversity and growing up. It certainly bought back some childhood memories for me and I’m impressed I still know the words.
Moving on through the set Lisa changed instruments from an acoustic guitar to an electric she lovingly calls ‘Clarence’ and the back to the acoustic with four more tracks. Lisa’s vocals are silvery and yet she is gregarious in character. The combination of these traits providing an ambiance created of endearment and sentiment.
It seemed like we’d only just started when we were suddenly at the end with Lisa introducing some pop into the mix with the lead track from her EP – Colours. Lisa introduces this song as one about her turning 30 and reflecting on where life has taken her.
Tonight has given me time and inclination to just come down and relax from my busy schedule which is mostly within the rock genre of music. I enjoyed Lisa’s honesty through her vocals and also her acoustic interpretations. I will let you in on a secret – playing ‘Clarence’ is a work in progress but he wasn’t out of place tonight and provided another focal point of interest.
As I was leaving I purchased a hard copy of Colours as did others and I have used it’s calm effects to soothe my soul after big days of writing. If you close your eyes and listen to Lisa’s vocals you find yourself drifting away with every note..through all the highs and all the lows but still in some sort of surreal safe zone.
The video below is a new song and not on the Colours EP but is expected to make an appearance on her debut album when it arrives, one only hopes it’s not too far away.