LUTHEA SALOM
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LUTHEA SALOM

New York City, New York, United States | INDIE

New York City, New York, United States | INDIE
Band Alternative Singer/Songwriter

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"daily freeman review"

kingston daily freeman (october 6, 2006)

LUTHEA SALOM
Incessant Spinning (Frank Andrada Music) 2005
- David Malachowski

Luthea Salom is a resident of both Barcelona and kingston, NY, and her recent release “Incessant Spinning” is a clever collection of cute but not precious tunes recorded in Kingston and impeccably produced by Salom and the renowned Malcolm Burn. (A protégée of Daniel Lanois, Burn has attached his ethereal mark to CDs by Emmylou Harris and Chris Whitley).

The textures and tones painted here are priceless; organs and quirky guitar lines volley for attention with Salom’s slinky vocals and clever turns of a phrase. Like in “Dragonfly” where she tells us “Fear’s a gum stuck to your bum/pulling you down making you succumb”.

Salom sings in a childlike yet wise voice that steers tunes like the driving “Die to Live,” dreamy “Like A River,” haunting and infectious (possibly Kingston inspired?) “ Winter Tires” are all filled with her unflinchingly optimistic bohemian spirit.

Particularly moving is her “Accidents” a brutal anti-war allegory in which she turns up the intensity from a simmer to a boil.

These songs weren’t pragmatically made to be hits, but could just be hits just because they’re so good.

Salom tours in Europe and often plays in New York and the States. Seek her out: www.lutheasalom.com

David Malachowski is a guitarist, producer and freelance journalist living in Woodstock. - kingston daily freeman


"Songwriters in Mixed Company"

The Artful Mind (MA, USA) (june, 2006)

Songwriters In Mixed Company

They've traveled from town to town, night after night, playing their songs everywhere from cafes to clubs, from stadiums to street fairs, songwriters driven by a love for music and a need to speak their minds and hearts to anyone wholl hear.
As the organizer and host of Songwriters in Mixed Company, a writers-in-the-round concert series, which occurs monthly at Mixed Company Theater in Great Barrington, I've had the great pleasure to take the stage with some terrific singer/songwriters, swapping songs and stories and sharing a mutual love for music and the craft of songwriting. Recently, I caught up with Todd Mack, Luthea Salom and Jason Loughlin, three of the featured performers from the series first six shows, and I asked them to tell their stories and share more about their experiences with music. What follows stems from those conversations.
He didn't set out that summer to become a performer. Todd Mack was tricked. Working at an Adirondack summer camp along with his sister Tracy more than 15 years ago, Mack thought hed enjoy some quiet weeks in the woods, far from crowds, and especially, far from anything resembling stages and spotlights. But fateand his friendshad other ideas. "I remember it very vividly", Mack recalls. "The Monopole, a pretty cool, long-standing club in Plattsburgh, NY, hosted an open mic every Tuesday. One night, my sister says to me, Hey, we're all going up to the Monopole to check out the open mic tonight. Wanna come? And she tells me to bring my guitar just in case I want to get up there and jam with somebody". Mack hesitated. Though he'd already been playing music for several years, he still lacked the confidence to take the stage alone. But he threw his guitar in the car anyway, and with twenty friends in tow, he made for the Monopole, totally unaware that he was driving straight into a trap. "I get there and walk in, only to find out that I'm due up on the stage in about 10 minutes, he laughs. Tracy had called the club ahead of time, and without my consent, she signed me up for the open mic. She orchestrated the whole thing so that we'd get there just before it was time for me to go on, so I wouldn't have time to back out of it". Nauseous, nervous and more than a little bit miffed at his tricksy sister, Mack bit the bullet, faced his fear and took the stage. "I'm sure it sucked, but my friends cheered so loud for me that it didnt matter", Mack says. "The club never had that kind of audience before for an open mic". Won over by Macks set and the enthusiasm of the crowd, the host decided to let him play on far longer than the usual three-song limit and even gave him some money out of his own pay at the end of the night. "He invited me to come back the next week to do it again, which I did, and thats pretty much how it all started. When I got back to Atlanta, where I was living at the time, I was like a man possessed. I hit every open mic in town three or four a week for about six months. Those eventually led to my own gigs, and theres been no stopping ever since". Not long after that fateful night, Mack began building a life around the music that he loves so much. He quit his day job, and never once looking back, he began a career that has involved songwriting, touring and record producing. Now the owner of the Off-the-Beat-n-Track recording studio, located here in Berkshires, Mack also hosts a radio show that features music by other indie artists, airing every Saturday night on 98.1 WKZE FM.
For Spanish/Canadian singer/songwriter Luthea Salom, who was raised in an artistic environment surrounded by musicians, painters and writers, the story also begins with the trickery of well-meaning friends. "When I was 13 years old, I had these jazz musician friends who wanted me to be their singer", Salom explains. "But they would show me the song only once and then make me sing it. Since I couldnt remember the song after just one listen, I had to kind of make it up as I went. They loved the melodies that I would come up with, so it became like a fun game for them, though quite torturous for me, since I didnt know any better. I just thought that was the normal way to rehearse. They later confessed all that was a trick to get the best out of me." Though it may have been much tougher on her at the time, Salom now credits those childhood friends with starting her down the road to becoming a songwriter. "Today, I really thank them for that. I had to improvise and write the melodies as I sang them live. Quite the challenge!" she recalls. "But that was the beginning of my songwriting career."
New York City singer/songwriter Jason Loughlin says that his songwriting process often begins with musical motifs involving instrumental arrangements and interesting chord structures. An accomplished musician whose uncle and mentor is a well-established Nashville songwriter, Loughlins melodies and lyrical ideas tend to flow out of a well-crafted musical structure. "I dont like musical arrangement or vibe to be an afterthought to the song", Loughlin explains. "That always sounds forced or boring to me. The hope is that the lead vocal melody and lyrics will be truly affected by whats happening musically." For inspiration, Loughlin keeps his ears wide open, drawing from a broad range of influences and always willing to try unconventional things. Everything from (Thelonious) Monk to some string parts on a Carpenters record will give me ideas, he explains. "Not being afraid to do outrageous things is really important if youre attempting greatness." Loughlin is no stranger to reaching beyond his grasp. His first attempts at songwriting, as he recalls, were quite lofty. "I first started performing my songs during my first semester at college. I remember feeling nervous but excited to share them", he remembers. "They were ambitious. They were also really bad. Looking back, though, Im happy they were big and crappy." As time has passed, Loughlin has learned from his early attempts and has tried to apply one simple lesson to the act of songwriting: "dont outwrite yourself. Write stuff that makes you shine. Knowing who you are is really important here", he says. "It can be easier than you think to outwrite yourself. I still do this from time to time. Ive written some great tunes that I just cant sing."
Self-knowledge is also central to Saloms writing process, as she uses it to explore, understand and express her inner life. "Writing helps me find who I am, which I feel is probably my main responsibility on this planet", she explains. "I feel I need to look in there and leave the trail of my growth so maybe others can have an easier ride with their own search. I truly believe that we are all unique and that uniqueness is somehow hidden in there waiting to surface. Its all covered in fears: fear of not fitting in, fear of solitude, imposed fears by our backgrounds. I feel its my duty as an artist to uncover it and throw my discoveries back to the world no matter how beautiful of monstrous they may be." Far from seeing this sort of creative process as self-indulgent, Salom believes that such a quest of self-understanding and expression can improve the state of the world. "Maybe Im being naïve or a romantic, but I firmly believe that if everyone spent most of their energy trying to understand who they were, there would be no wars and way more compassion out there", she says.
Mack is also a firm believer in the power of music to create positive change in the world. He recalls, as a child, watching John Lennon and Yoko Ono on television during their famous bed-in to protest the Vietnam War with all we are saying is give peace a chance being sung in the background. "I was completely blown away", he says. "It was at that moment that I realized the power in a song and in music in general". Four years ago, a life-shattering event in Macks life would solidify his commitment to using music as a vehicle for positive social change, when Macks close friend and band mate, the Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl, was murdered by terrorists in Pakistan. Shaken to the core by the brutal murder of a man whose life was devoted to creating understanding between different groups of people, Mack felt determined to turn this terrible tragedy into something meaningful. In association with the Friends of Daniel Pearl organization, last year Mack held the first annual FODFest (Friends of Danny) at his studio, featuring a number of local and national singer/songwriters, many of whom knew Pearl personally. "They came together that day to sing songs to honor Pearls memory, as well as to demonstrate the power that music can have to create healing in the world." For Mack, music has always also been about freedom. Even as a kid, he could feel that spirit coming through the music of bands like The Who and Led Zeppelin. "I have an older brother who turned me on to rock, and it just seemed so cool", he says. "It symbolized a rebelliousness that I could identify with, and the impression it left on me has never waned". As someone who is dogged by shyness, Salom says that music can give her the freedom to say things she cant otherwise express in social situations. "I tend to shy off and keep inside all the things I wish I could've said, often regretting not having been able to come out of that shell", she explains. "When I go home, I write those things I couldnt say, or I write about why I couldnt say them, and when I perform those songs, I feel like Im finally making peace with my shyness." Ironically, it is Saloms shyness that moves her to perform onstage. "I like the challenge of throwing myself into such an abyss, when you know all eyes are watching every movement you make and all ears are listening to every word you say", she says. For Salom, live performance can be deeply intimate, an experience of making powerful connections with other human beings. "Performing my songs live is almost like a sexual experience for me, because you get this amazing mix of energy coming from the audience together with your own, she says, and after a while, I lose control of myself and just ride along on this wave of intensity. Its very magical!" She recalls one show in particular when she was surprised to find herself making a great connection with a stadium filled with heavy metal fans, despite her far more soft and subtle style. "I was opening for this metal band called U.F.O.. It was the first time I played in front of thousands of people, and I thought I was going to be eaten alive", she remembers. "I remember doing wacky things onstage to get their attention, like kneeling on the floor to solo with my electric guitar and telling them funny stories. Soon enough, I magically captured their attention, and they became one of the best audiences Ive ever had in my life. It was a powerful experience. Making that connection with the audience can transform a mediocre gig into a great one".
Yet, Mack feels that as a performer, the first person he must please is himself. "You are your own worst critic", he says. "So, I know that if I can please myself, I will be pleasing the audience. But if you invert that and try to please the audience first, odds are you will fall short not only of your own expectations but of theirs as well". Recently, Mack and his band The Star Alternative celebrated the release of their new CD Square Peg, Round Hole with a party at Club Helsinki in Great Barrington. Mack remembers that night as an especially good gig, because first and foremost, the band was the tightest its ever been, and the crowd could feel that energy coming from the stage. "The chemistry was felt throughout the room, he says. The audience was right there with us, and thats the absolute best feeling in the world. Thats my drug".
Loughlin agrees that great shows start with great performances. "If the performer has done his homework, a bad show is virtually impossible. The best shows for me have been the ones with lots of preparation", he says. "The extra work and planning Ive done to put on an entertaining and unique show has never let me down. But all that planning and preparation done in the privacy of a practice room or studio ultimately leads to that moment: the lights go up, the first chord is struck, the first word is sung. After all, everything comes down to the moment, live".
"Once onstage, you play by instinct", says Mack. "The moment has passed forever before you've even realized you were in it. Every note happens so fast and then is gone like the wind. And once that moment is gone, its gone."
When playing live, each of these songwriters tries to find the way to stay open to the moment. "I perform best when I dont think, when I just focus my energy and concentration into what I am doing and let the song and the performance take over", says Mack. "Its about finding that groove where you let your mind be first mate instead of pilot". "I let go and listen to my songs as I perform them as if that was the first time I sang them in my life", says Salom. "I try to keep my mind empty, and maybe that is why performing onstage gives me such a redeeming feeling from which I need to recover each time, no matter how big or small the show was." Says Loughlin, "simply, I try to open myself up to the possibility of a moment. Don't force it, but leave milk and cookies on the mantle for it." - The Artful Mind


"vintage guitar player review"

Vintage Guitar Player (april, 2005)

Luthea Salom
Incessant Spinning
Out Music / Frank Andrada Music

On her second album Luthea Salom forms a complex modern world from basic melodies coupled with modernist arrangements. Other recording artists such as Lou Reed, Emmylou Harris and Patty Griffin think very highly of Salom's work. Lou even has this disc in his i-pod. Produced by Malcolm Burn, Incessant Spinning sounds wonderful, with a spacious soundstage and sumptuous harmonic textures. The music itself couples intentional musical simplicity with girlish-sounding vocals to create contemporary post-modern folk music. Neo-dweeb Lisa Loeb's better songs approach Luthea's level of purposeful minimalism. Incessant Spinning delivers fresh 21st century introspective pop with panache.
• Steven Stone - vintage guitar player


"rolling stone magazine"

Rolling Stone Magazine

Luthea fits perfectly into the North American category of the new generation of singer/songwriters. Using acoustic rather than electric guitars, she stands out from her peers thanks to her more ecclectic sound. There is a very good reason for this: Luthea is half Spanish and half Canadian, growing up in Canada till the age of ten when she then moved to Barcelona.

At 17 she went to London where she lived till she was 22. From there she ventured to Australia. This nomadic lifestyle is reflected in her record Out of Without. Moving around so much has helped me make music, she says. Luthea doesn't seem to belong anywhere, yet is comfortable everywhere.

For quite a long time she's wanted to put together all her recent work in a record.

It all happened quite slowly, but I thought it was more important to take the time to do things properly. I ended up recording with producer Malcolm Burn who has worked with artists I admire a lot like Patti Smith and Emmylou Harris to name a few.

Luthea writes with her acoustic guitar and admits that in her music she uses her lyrics as a way to reach others. Lyrics are crucial for me. That's why I try to stay away from mega productions. I like my voice to stand out, bare, with few effects.

The record is very varied. I think Laugh About It stands out beacuse of its lyrics, an invitation for everyone to be themselves. It's the song that maybe best portrays all the good work that went into the album.

Songs like Days Like This... or How reflect a darker side of the general sound with also more introverted lyrics.Most of the songs were written while in Barcelona. I don't know why that is exactly, if it's the light there or the atmosphere, but I've always felt very comfortable in Barcelona writing music. - rolling stone magazine


Discography

"out of without" - 2002 (CD)
"incessant spinning" - 2004 (CD)
"sunbeam surrounded by winter" (2007)
"rebel rebel" - 2007 (single)
singles DRAGONFLY, A MINUTE and ACCIDENTS are played occasionally on independent radios throughout north america
singles DRAGONFLY, ACCIDENTS, DIE TO LIVE and currently REBEL REBEL are played regularly in europe

Photos

Bio

*****25 GIGS BOOKED THROUGH SONICBIDS!!!*****

---- “Fresh 21st century introspective pop with panache”.
Steven Stone, Vintage Guitar Player ----

Everybody’s talking about Luthea Salom, the singer/songwriter from Spain and Canada who is emerging in the International Music Market like a lightning bolt cutting across the calm Mediterranean Sea. Her present CD/Album release entitled “Sunbeam Surrounded By Winter” is vibrating the international airwaves in the Singer/Songwriter, and Popular formats. Luthea’s crossover style is one that most artists try to, but never can achieve.

Luthea Salom is no newcomer to international performance. Her fans have been able to track her shows worldwide. She performs extensively all over Spain, Portugal, the UK, France and the rest of Europe, as well in the United States. Luthea lives in New York City and she is a well known fixture in the downtown club scene, performing in many hot spots around the City.

JM, of Rolling Stone Magazine wrote “Luthea stands out from her peers” in his review of “Out of Without” which was produced by Grammy award winning producer, Malcolm Burn in 2002. “Out of Without” will be re-released in 2009 with Luthea’s original demo recordings that attracted Malcolm Burn’s attention, included as bonus tracks.

---- “Luthea’s style is called Luthea… Very original!!”
Emmylou Harris -----

Luthea’s second album release, “Sunbeam Surrounded by Winter” and her bohemian flair has led her to the ears of many influential artists and she was invited to perform as an opening act for Alanis Morissette, Nils Lofgren, Dan Bern, Norah Jones and Emmylou Harris.

---- “Luthea’s songs are in my iTunes”
Lou Reed ----

She has performed and toured extensively through North America and Europe capturing the media’s attention wherever she’s been.

---- “It’s this combination of evocative melodies and thoughtful words what makes this artist’s universe so shockingly refreshing!” –
Katherine Phelps, LIFE & FASHION MAGAZINE ----