I first saw Lisa play at Country 2 Country 2014 on one of the pop stages, and was impressed enough that I stopped my intended walk past and stayed to listen instead. Imagine my delight when I was checking the Country Music Gig Guide and saw that she would be playing a set at David’s Music in Letchworth, my local record store and pretty much my favourite shop in the entire world. Of course I went, who could pass up an opportunity like this, and one at no charge too.
I’ve seen live acts in David’s Music before, but usually they are at the back of the shop in the coffee shop area, however this time a small makeshift stage was placed at the front of the shop, with the records providing a very apt backdrop. Lisa came on at around 2pm, and with her guitar played some songs from her catalogue of work, which goes back over a decade. Bob Harris has said of Lisa that she’s “one of our finest singer/songwriters”, and it’s hard to disagree as her songs are as masterfully written as they are sung.
I was particularly pleased to see Lisa perform Music & The Mountains, which is a really beautiful song about unrequited love. I knew of this song because Bob Harris, he of Bob Harris Country fame, had Lisa on to perform for his Under The Apple Tree sessions. She also sang Wildfire, from her more Americana skewed second album Lost Again, which also sounded terrific.
Lisa plays with passion all the while managing to look serene and blissfully happy in her craft. I’m not familiar with Ryan Adams’ music, but Lisa’s cover of When the Stars Go Blue now has me able to say that I at least know and like one of his songs, sung by Lisa anyway! As well as guitar, Lisa also played her ukulele during her last song of the 45 minute set, and in spite of it not being checked with the system beforehand, she took it all in her stride and it all worked perfectly. Lisa has an EP out called Reminders, which I can wholly recommend, as if memory serves me right she played 3 of the 4 songs this past Saturday, and all sounded fantastic.
It was quite amusing seeing some teenagers looking in through the shop window, amazed to see someone playing music in a shop. Yes folks, that’s how we used to do things before the digitisation of the music world, and afternoons in front of YouTube took over. It’s why supporting your local store is so important, because that is where live shop performances do still go on, and are so important for the both artists and fans alike. Lisa gained quite an audience throughout her set, and her music obviously assisted browsing to the few people who were undeterred in their record foraging in the racks behind where she was playing.
I got to chat to Lisa afterwards and she is absolutely delightful, as we talked about her music, the gig and the baby that sat in its pushchair transfixed with Lisa during the first few songs. I’ve been listening to Lisa’s music quite a bit over the last few days and it’s the perfect antidote to being stuck in traffic on the way home from work, as it soothes and lifts the mood. I’ll definitely see Lisa live again, and I hope based on her Reminders EP, that we have a new album coming soon.
You can see more of Lisa Redford here:
Also be sure to check out David’s Music if you are in the area – the best record store around, with a cafe out the back and a fantastic book shop next door