I write and perform songs on acoustic and electric guitar, piano, and ukulele. Most recently, I completed my fifth CD — a live record funded by fan contributions and pre-orders of over $20,000. Entitled Live At The Atlas, my latest work draws inspiration from some of the great live albums that shaped me as a songwriter (Nirvana: Unplugged, Ani Difranco: Living in Clip, Erykah Badu: Live, Fleetwood Mac: The Dance). The focus is acoustic, featuring one new song and fresh arrangements of 16 others from my previous full-length albums. I recorded Live At The Atlas on Friday, September 26th and Saturday, September 27th, 2014, before a live audience at The Atlas Performing Arts Center in the historic H Street Corridor of Northeast Washington, D.C. The album was released at the 9:30 Club February 4, 2015, and on iTunes March 3.
My most recent studio album, EVERYMAN, was produced by Jamie Candiloro (REM, Willie Nelson) and invites comparisons to Bonnie Raitt and Sheryl Crow. It features backing vocals from Ryan Adams, guitar work from Doug Pettibone (Lucinda Williams, Ray LaMontagne) and pedal steel from Marty Rifkin (Bruce Springsteen, Tom Petty). Film talents David Conrad (Wedding Crashers, The Ghost Whisperer) and Mark Schwartzbard (20 Feet From Stardom, Borat) shot the video for the first single, “Dig,” close to my hometown in Pittsburgh. The music video for the album’s second single, “Ask For It,” is made up of footage from a sold out release show at one of D.C.’s top venues, The Hamilton.
I’ve toured the country for the last 15 years in support of 5 independent releases from my label, Overtime Records. “Overtime” comes from my days of fitting in studio time in the late evening and early morning hours before I was able to go full-time with music. My albums span the genres of Folk (EP – 2001, Proof – 2005), Rock (Keep Talking – 2009), AAA/Alt-Country (EVERYMAN – 2013) and Americana (Live At The Atlas – 2015). Chunky Glasses calls me “a skilled, assured artist,” and AmericanaUK agrees, saying, “Laura is real talent.”
I would love to play for you sometime.
Here is a little bit about some of the killer musicians I might be playing with when you come to a show:
Wes Lanich plays keys. He has been a staple of the Washington, D.C. area music scene for over a decade. Frequently hauling his Hammond B3 and Leslie speaker to gigs and recording sessions, Wes plays with a number of blues, R&B, and singer/songwriter projects in the area. His first love is the music of Ray Charles. “Ray’s music definitely got me hooked on the piano and organ when I was growing up. I especially love the recordings featuring both Ray on the piano and Billy Preston on the Hammond.”
Bobby Thompson plays all kinds of guitars. He studied contemporary guitar at Musicians Institute in Los Angeles, CA, and Berklee College of Music. Bobby has toured and recorded with artists in many genres and calls the road his most important teacher. Blueheart Revival, his blues-rock group, recently released its first full-length album entitled Stone Feathers.
Patrick “Hammer” Thornton plays bass. He has been a professional bassist for over 20 years. Pat studied music at George Mason Unversity and received his Professional Bass Certificate from Berklee School of Music. He toured extensively with Pat McGee Band and currently plays with Toby Lightman, Taylor Carson and Tiffany Thompson.
Ben Tufts is a freelance drumset artist and educator. In the past two years, he has performed over 300 shows with over 30 artists, all over the continental US. He plays drums for Derek Evry, Miss Shevaughn & Yuma Wray, and The Cowards Choir. He maintains a private teaching practice here in the DC metro area, and works with the band programs in area schools.