Lori Citro
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Billed as the Hometown Heroes in honor of the WSTW-FM radio show that plays local artists, this is the second outing from an ad hoc group of Wilmington, Del.-Philly suburbanarea bands and singers on behalf of Toys For Tots. Last time around the whole cast gathered for a Band Aid cover, and this time they doubled up with
"Happy Xmas (War Is Over)" with
a modern crunchy percussion track, returning later in the CD for a hard-rock version of the Jackie DeShannon hit "Put a Little Love in Your Heart," which I guess became a Christmas song when Annie Lennox and Al Green dueted it for the Bill Murray flick "Scrooged." Also
like the last time, a few originals sneak in among the covers, among them Gina Degnars' "With Light and Love," a piano ballad with just a hint of Tori Amos; Mary Arden Collins sings the folky "Christmas Dream," a finger-picked lilt about the guy she's missing; the also-folky "I Think I've Been Good This Year" by Erik Mitchell; Lori Citro brings us the waltz"Perpetually 25," about people who don't grow up at the same rate; and Otispunk performs thegarage-rock "Shopping Wonderland (Egg Nog's Revenge)," with buried lyrics about the hell
of Christmas shopping. Among the covers, notice Yes Virginia's faithful
"I Believe in Father Christmas," The Autumn Affair's U2-ish "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" that closes the CD, and Lights Out's doo-wopped "Silver Bells." There's a bit of jazz on here as well, with Jabari's "Little Drummer Boy" and a fusion-sounding take on "Santa Baby" by Laura Cheadle. Good value for money if you know anyone in Delaware. - Mistletunes.com


by Pete Williams

Lori Citro took the final step in becoming a full-time musician last year, leaving corporate America for a career as a performing artist

Look in the dictionary under “musician,” and you’re liable to find a photo of Lori Citro.

The Newark-based singer-songwriter doesn’t just perform live, or just write original songs, or just teach private piano lessons; she does it all, and more. She’s the director of music for Smyrna’s Daybreak United Methodist Church, and has served as director of music and accompanist for more than 30 musical productions in the area.

With her recent move into a career as a performing artist, Citro, a single mother of three, is immersed in a life in which the music never stops. And that’s fine with her. “When you love something as much as I love music,” she says, “you can never get sick of it, even if it’s your job. I truly love what I do.”

Citro realized she had a passion for music at the age of 6, and by 10 she had begun taking piano lessons. She wrote her first song in the fifth grade, and hasn’t stopped since.

She majored in voice at Troy State University in Troy, Ala. and studied MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) synthesis at the Center for Media Arts in New York City.

Despite her life-long passion, it wasn’t until last year that she decided to commit to music, quitting her job at DuPont to pursue a career as a performing artist. “I decided that the corporate world was not for me. I knew where my heart was,” she says.

Citro has written and recorded an album of well-crafted, lyrically driven songs. She originally did it as a demo in preparation for an album with a full band, but she came to the realization that what she had recorded was as authentic a representation of herself as she could make.

“After I recorded the songs and listened back to them a few times, I said to myself, ‘This is me,’ and I knew that I should just leave it the way it was,” she says. “It was how I actually sounded, and how I wanted to sound.”

She titled the album Stripped, because the majority of the songs were recorded with just her and the piano, save a few overdubs of percussion instruments and background vocals.

Based on the songs available on her website, it’s clear that she is knowledgeable and experienced in the art of songwriting. Influenced by the likes of Tori Amos, Carole King, and Aimee Mann, her lyrics are personal and expressive. Musically, she manages to create fresh melodies from rather simple chord progressions, singing beautifully in an almost conversational manner.

Though she’s only been performing consistently for a little more than a year, Citro has already received a measure of praise. Earlier this year she was one of the recipients of the Delaware Division of the Arts Fellowship Award, and she was named 2007’s Best Female Singer in 93.7 WSTW FM’s “Hometown Heroes” awards.

As for the future, Citro doesn’t know what to expect. “I just want to keep playing,” she says.

She does admit to one overriding ambition: “I’ve always wanted to write music for a movie or a television show.” Coincidentally, she was recently informed that she may be cast in a reality TV show about a “band of moms,” so even that’s a possibility.

Citro isn’t overly concerned with what the future holds; she’s already happy with her career. “If the door [of success] opens up to me, great,” she says. “If not, and I keep doing what I’m doing now, well, that’s great, too.”

Lori Citro will play two shows in the area this month, at Rodney Square on Aug. 15 and at H.B. DuPont Park on Aug. 23.


- Out and About magazine


"Lori Citro does more than just write and play music; her songs tell stories. With a beautiful voice, Lori paints a picture and draws you into it -- sometimes poignant, sometimes inspirational, and sometimes with a sense of humor."

Mark Rogers, DJ 93.7 WSTW - wstw


"If Bruce Springsteen is the voice of everyman, then Lori Citro sings for the single mom. Seemlessly blending genres from Broadway to Motown, Lori is a talented singer/songwriter with a clear vision."

Paul Janocha, Engineer/Producer Ken-Del Studios - Ken-Del Studios


Singer/songwriter Lori Citro found me on MySpace, so I stopped by her space at http://www.myspace.com/loricitro to have a listen. I have to preface this by saying that I don't normally get into the style of music that she plays, specifically unaccompanied acoustic piano, but I always try to keep an open mind. Anyway ... afterward, I couldn't get her song "Shoe" out of my head. I'd think that I'd shaken it off, and then it would come back. It took some doing, but I did finally manage to get the song out of my head. Then about a week later, I'm in the shower, and it's back. I swear, it's not my style of music, really. I'm just not that in touch with my feminine side. It's going through my head again, so I better close this blog entry and check in with Attack Ships on Fire (http://www.attackshipsonfire.com/music2.htm) to get my testosterone level back up. Seriously, Lori Citro has got some talent, but I may not be man enough to handle it.
- Skippy the Lizard


Discography

"stripped" (released Dec. 2007) eleven song accoustic CD

"Shoe" from Live at 4W5 CD (a singer-songwriter compilation) (Nov. 2006) - voted "Delaware Valley's Most Wanted" on air WSTW's Hometown Heroes (PA, DE, MD, NJ) 'Nette Radio (TX) Tru North (NC) and Mike's Reading Room (MI)

"Perpetually 25" original single on WSTW's Hometown Heroes Christmas CD "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas" (Dec. 2006)

EP "One Soul" (2003)played on Pacific Songwriting ipod webcast (AU), WSTW's Hometown Heroes (PA, DE, MD, NJ), 'Nette Radio (TX), Mike's Cafe webcasting in Michigan
Dec. 2008 Tim Qualls Christmas Show on Youtube
Apr. 2007 and 2008 live performance video from Tim Qualls show on YouTube and www.myspace.com/loricitro

"Next Tear" "Believe in Love" "Unfailing Love" from stripped CD live versions airing now on 93.7 WSTW's Hometown Heroes

"Believe In Love" now airing on Mere Music International FameGames in Spain

2002 Cafe Soul live concert at SUMC

Photos

Bio

2008 Effigy Awards nominated in 9 categories
2008/9 ASCAP Plus award winner
2007 Delaware Division of the Arts artist fellowship recipient
2007 93.7 WSTW Hometown Heroes Homey Award Best Female Singer/Songwriter
2008 and 2009 nominated Best Keyboard player

Singer, songwriter, teacher, musical director and accompanist, Lori Citro fills many roles simultaneously.. She has played the piano since she was six and written music since the age of 10. She studied MIDI synthesis at the Center for Media Arts in New York City and majored in voice at Troy State University.

Citro has played and sung with a number of bands, including Columbia recording artists Bang! and the Stand. Her songs have been regularly played on 93.7 WSTW Radio’s “Hometown Heroes,” the Dallas-based Web site ‘Nette Radio, Michigan's Open Mike Podcast, North Carolina's True North podcast, Spain's FameGames and a Webcast for Pacific Songwriting Contest out of Australia. She has showcased at the Independent Music Conference in Philadelphia and at Dewey Beach Music conference as well as Delaware Music Festival and GoGirls Invasion at Dewey Beach. She was also nationally sponsored by GoGirls for a GoGirls Elite Concert in Wilmington, Delaware. In 2008, she was nominated for Best singer/songwriter on 93.7 WSTW, Spark Magazine, Out & About Magazine and Delaware Today.