Amy LaCour is a contemporary musician with classic influences. Her music is rooted in soul and singer/songwriter traditions while drawing loosely from jazz, folk and blues.
Since 2007, Amy has released two CDs under own label, Voice Recordings. The first, Bitter Suite, featured a stellar line-up of backing musicians including Curt Bisquera, Reggie Hamilton, Randy Jacobs, James Harrah, and Debra Dobkin. The set was richly textured, moody, and highlighted the jazz influence in Amy’s singing and songwriting. Urban Network described the sound as “a thinking man’s cross between Norah Jones and Bill Withers. Rooted,” and named the lead single, “One Man’s Stone,” one of the best songs of 2008.
The follow up, 2010’s The Upswing, was a big departure in sound. Her second release illustrated more of Amy’s pop music influences, and featured spare arrangements and colorful vocal harmonies. “Making The Upswing was a tremendous learning process for me,” Amy explains. “I was incredibly proud of the results, but knew that I still had so much more growing to do as a musician.”
So rather than touring in support of the release, Amy chose instead to attend a local music school in order to deepen her knowledge of theory and technique. After nearly a year of study, Amy discovered a renewed sense of focus and a deeper connection to the American traditions of blues and soul. “The past year has brought mentors and new friends into my life who have helped me grow as a singer and as a performer,” says Amy. “I will be forever grateful.”
That year has culminated in a live recording, videotaped for fans. Supported by a band of new friends and mentors, Amy has recorded a set of both original and cover songs that highlight her soulful voice and her creative arrangements. Titled, The Sonora Sessions (for the studio in which she recorded), Amy will be releasing one new video per month through much of the spring and summer. She hopes to turn the sessions into a CD by the year’s end. Fans can follow Amy’s tumblr page for monthly video posts and weekly insights into each song. The sessions begin on Thursday, April 19th and will continue through August. A new video will be posted on the third Thursday of each month. “This project – from start to finish – was a joy to produce,” says Amy. “There are so many resources available to artists now. The power is in our hands and the possibilities are endless.”
“Her husky, soulful vocals, as full-bodied as a fine wine, ache with a heartbreak fusion of fortitude and vulnerability, bringing to mind other great singers to whose league she belongs.” Paul Zollo, American Songwriter Magazine
Amy LaCour - vocals & piano
The Bitter Suite EP c 2007
Produced and Recorded by Richard Barron at Sonora Recorders, Atwater Village, CA
2. One Man's Stone
3. I'm The One
4. Fool's Road
The Upswing c 2010
Produced and Recorded by David Bowick
1. Same World
2. 'Till Now
3. The Woman in Your Life
4. In the Wind
6. Gypsy Woman
7. The Right One
8. More Than Anything
Indie Artist Focus
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With all of the trapping of yesteryear’s soul sister ala Laura Nyro or Roberta Flack and tomorrow’s...With all of the trapping of yesteryear’s soul sister ala Laura
Nyro or Roberta Flack and tomorrow’s acoustic jazz
songstress, Amy is gracefully bridging the widening generation
Influenced by all of the greats, this songwriter/vocalist/pianist
is making soul history for her native Seattle. Check out her
fetchingly soulful “Same World.”
Four Star Review
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Her husky, soulful vocals, as full-bodied as a fine wine, ache with a heartbreak fusion of fortitude...Her husky, soulful vocals, as full-bodied as a fine wine, ache with a heartbreak fusion of fortitude and vulnerability, bringing to mind other great singers to whose league she belongs, from Lady Day and Etta James through Fiona Apple and Norah Jones. And like Apple and Jones, her songs revolve on the clean engine of her stirring singing and her simple but effective piano figures. Within this matrix, the brilliant producer-engineer Richard Barron has subtly and sensitively etched sparkling, poignant tracks that breathe with the fluid dynamics of the songs and their performers. Tender instrumental elements such as a mandolin flourish from James Harrah or Debra Dobkin’s luminous percussion add exultant luster to these proceedings. LaCour’s songs are mostly mid-tempo ballads of deep soul and jazzy melodic sweetness wed to poetic lyrics of sorrow and triumph, such as the great opener “Bittersweet, “ and especially “One Man’s Stone,” which resounds like a timeless spiritual. Great soul standard.
A Striking Debut
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This striking acoustic debut EP from singer/songwriter LaCour arrived out of the blue one afternoon ...This striking acoustic debut EP from singer/songwriter LaCour arrived out of the blue one afternoon and rendered me spellbound. The lady reminds me of a cross between Bill Withers and Norah Jones with her sharply penned story songs. The two most striking are "One Man's Stone" (a front porch southern groove that finds Amy trying to get a man blind in love to see) and "Fall" (a more poetically melancholy rumination which Amy opens with the line, "I missed the leaves change waiting for you to become someone else…"). I expect great things from Ms. LaCour's upcoming full-length debut.
Martini & Velvet Curtain Music
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The first thing that strikes me about Amy LaCour is that really strong jazzy voice. It’s just gorgeo...The first thing that strikes me about Amy LaCour is that really strong jazzy voice. It’s just gorgeous and suits the music to a tee.
These songs are well written…interesting melodies that really evoke a sultry feeling. All these songs are quite soulful.
The music is piano jazz club-ish. This is ‘martini and velvet curtain’ music. Mmmm, very nice.
This is really a class project. From the CD artwork to the production of the music, all of it, a lovely package.
Stand out songs: One Man’s Stone and I’m the One but I honestly love every song here.
Soulful & Sweet
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Soulful and sweet, is probably best how to describe the voice of Amy LaCour. There's also a hint of ...Soulful and sweet, is probably best how to describe the voice of Amy LaCour. There's also a hint of something a bit deeper, something a bit darker. This EP reminds me a bit of Alicia Keys, without all the vocal gymnastics.
Opening with the title track, well title track of sorts, as the spelling is different, "Bittersweet". Not sure if this is intended or an oversight, but I can't help mull it over, each time I put the CD on. The Alicia Keys sounds is more evident on "One Man's Stone", but more for the piano accompaniment, than the vocals. It's probably my favourite track on this 5 track EP.
"I'm the One", has a fairly sombre mood, but though the music is downbeat, the vocals soar like a bird. "Fools Road" feels like a more complete song and I start hearing hints of Aretha Franklyn, bold and confidence abounding. The final track is "Fall", which really seals things nicely and brings the EP to a nice close.
Throughout the EP, Amy's voice is strong and sweet, but I can't help but feel, there lies a diva beneath. I'd love to hear Amy really let loose, just to see what it would sound like.
Conclusion : A real relaxing EP and one that fulfills that 5pm need for something to unwind to.
One to two 45 minute sets of original songs paired with folk, soul and jazz covers.
There are no upcoming dates at this time.