Thomas Lisa
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Thomas Lisa

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Music

The best kept secret in music

Press


""a genius, with multiple personality disorder""

So I get a CD, “Flawed Beauty,” from Chicago songwriter Thomas Lisa with a letter that says, “The song lyrics are inside the CD booklet. I highly recommend these for family sing alongs.”

Okay, Layton clan, gather ‘round! Everyone got your songsheets? Great! Let’s start with track number six. And a-one, and a-two, and:

“Do you wonder why I shake and I cough whenever you start taking clothes off? The answer as to why we’ve faltered is that you’ve been surgically altered....How will this boy ever get laid when girls are artificially made...”

Umm...someone wanna revive Grandma?

Personally, I think Thomas Lisa is a genius. With multiple personality disorder. Sometime he’s an angry, socially relevant Weird Al Yankovic. Consider “Attention All Supermodels,” in which he wonders why guys who sleep with these beauties would ever want to leave the bedroom:

“Soon the answer was very clear, the fact undeniably plain to hear. They open their mouths and begin to talk. Attention All Supermodels...shut up. Attention All Supermodels...shut up. Silence is nifty when your IQ’s fifty.”

He’s also living the revenge of the nerds. He’s dedicated his CD “to kids who aren’t like the other kids,” and we find out why in “No Shower For Me.” “Hey Mr. Gym Teacher, I sure do hope you understand, I don’t want to take a shower. You see, I am not quite a man. Scholastically I may, I may be wise beyond my years, but physically I cannot , I cannot match up with my peers.”

He challenges well-known genius Marilyn vos Savant in “Questions for Marilyn,” wondering why the smartest woman in the world is wasting her intelligence answering questions we already have answers to. He puts overblown hip-hop artists in their places with “No More Mister Famous.”

And even though he seems embarrassed by this, he is, in fact, a romantic as well. “Goodnight Sweetheart” is a beautiful love song, and “I Just Want You To Know” is a song of attraction with cool percussion interludes and a staccato tempo that sounds like a heart racing. In the CD booklet where the lyrics to these songs should be, he’s written: “Let’s all pretend this lyric never happened,” and “This lyric caused internal bleeding in 9 out of 10 laboratory mice. The other rat died instantly.” Sorry, Mr. Lisa, we’re on to you, you big softie.

The music is electronic, experimental, storytelling rock. The music sparks and snaps, heavily influenced by 80s new wave, but taken much, much farther. The premise of “No More Mr. Famous” is that Beethoven and Bach are back from the dead and writing rock music, and the song breaks into a raging guitar solo with the kind of drama and passion those composers would bring to it. Lisa also writes hypnotic, melancholy music. “Dying on the Vine,” my favorite track, is a perfect example.

He’s a two-time Honorable Mention recipient in the Billboard Songwriting Competition and an accomplished jazz bassist. He’s very funny and smart as hell. I strongly recommend this one.

- indie-music.com


""incredibly talented""

Have you ever heard music that you cannot possibly fit into a category? Thomas Lisa would be placed there in that "un-category". Mr. Lisa and his band are incredibly talented individuals with a great knack for sarcasm delivered in a pretty package. Fans of Radiohead, Weezer and quite a few others will enjoy this immensely. - the Cornzine


Discography

Greater Than Us (released 2/2004)
- includes 2 music videos

Flawed Beauty (released 3/2000)

Photos

Feeling a bit camera shy

Bio

Thomas Lisa is a critically acclaimed Singer/Songwriter. Disenchanted with the current state of music/radio, Thomas set out to chart a course of his own. His inventive mix of surf-punk, rock, and jazz, combine with compelling, provocative song ideas to make Thomas one of the brightest voices in Indie-rock.

Thomas has also written and directed several short films and music videos. His groundbreaking videos for "Greater Than Us" and "White Hot Dork Funk" recently debuted at the LakeShore Theatre in Chicago. They will also be the subject of an upcoming cable special. Both music videos are included on Thomas' enhanced CD "Greater Than Us". Check out the Photo section for outtakes.