Sassy musician Lecia Louise is currently breaking out in a big way off the back of her cruisy summer anthem, ‘My Everything’, which has been tearing up the Triple J Unearthed charts across all genres.
The talented singer-songwriter and guitar virtuoso straddles effortlessly between classic 70’s musical genres such as blues-rock and soul, augmenting the laid-back vibe of her current single with some in-your-face rock attitude and serious guitar chops across her musical trajectory.
And if this is your first taste of Lecia’s music then you may be surprised to learn that she’s been honing her craft for over 15 years now. Having toured extensively throughout Australia and overseas, performing with a plethora of this countries most respected performers and releasing six studio albums, she’s currently putting the finishing touches on her latest long player.
Friday, 19 February saw her take time out from the studio to step back onto the stage at the Basement at HOTA in a rapturously received sold out performance.
We recently chatted with Lecia to get the inside scoop on ‘My Everything’, as well as discovering the impact that guitar god Jimi Hendrix had on setting her on her musical journey and finding out what she gets up to outside of music.
Congratulations on the success of your latest single, ‘My Everything’. Did you suspect you were onto something special as the song took shape, and where do you rate it within your extensive back catalogue of music?
Thank you. I am really happy ‘My Everything’ made it to #1 across all genres on the Triple J unearthed charts. I put a lot of hours into my music so it is nice when you get a win like that.
I find it hard to tell which songs of mine will be successful. While I was recording this track in Nashville and then back in Australia, producer Michael Flanders would often say “this is your number one hit Lecia.’” As we moulded the song together through recording, I really enjoyed how it felt and the production direction Flanders gave it worked effortlessly. I am proud to have this song in my catalogue.
When did you start playing guitar and was there a defining moment or influence that set you on your musical and song writing pathway?
I started playing guitar at the age of 13. I will always remember the videos my step dad Alan showed me when I was in high school. One concert which really burnt an imprint on my mind was of Jimi Hendrix’s electrifying performance at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967. He was wearing bright yellow and red clothes with a black vest and played with such energy, sexuality and passion. He finished by burning his guitar on stage. I was hooked and at that point I dedicated my life to playing guitar and making music.
Has COVID and its impacts on touring and live performances opened up other musical doorways or creative outlets that you may have otherwise not pursued or considered?
Absolutely. As we know, live streaming has become so popular since the arrival of COVID. Even though it is far from being the same as a live show, it is a great way to connect with new audiences and other artists. I gained more followers through lockdown streams and also built my musical network internationally. Occasionally I do collaborations with other artists who I would not normally get to play with.
COVID also forced me to dig through the vault to see what unreleased material I had. During the lockdown days, I released a digital album called ‘Live in Germany.’ It contains 9 tracks which I recorded while on tour in Germany throughout 2018 and it can only be purchased through my website shop, lecialouise.com/shop.
You’re currently working on a new album which is set for release later in the year. Can you put us in the picture as to how it’s coming along and who you’ve been working with… I imagine it must be quite challenging to pull it all together in these current times!?
I worked hard and saved up money to fly to Nashville in 2019 to record the rhythm tracks for a 12 track album with a team that 8Ball Aitken put together, including Michael Flanders, Dennis Holt and Dave Francis. Our goal was to record an alternative blues rock soul album. I already had a bunch of songs written and was working on new tracks when 8Ball suggested I record in the USA. He and I co-wrote about 5 songs to add to this album too.
The plan was to record all the bed tracks (drums, bass, acoustic guitar) in Nashville and then bring the hard drive of the sessions back home to continue working on them here with other musicians and producers in Australia I know, as well as in the comfort of my own room at home. I took this approach so that I could spread out the money I was spending on the album and have some time to work on creative parts in the comfort of my own home. I also planned on releasing one song at a time to lead up to the final album release, to build my audience as I was working on the record.
The current times are more challenging than ever with the arts industry being affected so badly by COVID. Shows are being cancelled all the time. It is uninspiring to book tours in case they are cancelled at the very last minute. It involves a lot of time, risk and preparation to put together shows and tours.
Arts grants were always competitive, but now, even more so. I don’t have any arts funding to put towards completing my album (I applied for a couple of grants but no luck). There are still more costs involved but the end is in sight.
8Ball Aitken played a large roll in pre-production for my coming album and Michael Flanders has been involved with production, sometimes from across the ocean or in the same room. I also did a few recording sessions with Rick Hollis, Jason Millhouse (Record works), Ashley Lewis and by myself at home. Local talented musicians have contributed to this album such as Ian Peres (Wolf Mother), Craig Kickbush (Toni Childs), Andonia Bann (Paul Kelly, Guy Sebastian), Asabi Goodman (The Soulmen) and Ammiel Warner.
Are there any upcoming artists that have particularly grabbed your attention over the past 12 months?
Over the last 12 months I have enjoyed discovering the music of Fantastic Negrito, Nyssa Ray, Emma Donovan And The Putbacks, Eric Gail and guitarists on social media such as Larry Mitchell and Tora Dahle Aagard. On a side note, I am a big fan of LP and Don Walker.
Do you have any other particular hobbies or interests outside of music?
Spending time with the people I love. I also joined the gym again, which I find to be great for both body and mind. Most of the time however, I am spending time on my music, the promotion and marketing of my music or watching music concerts. Oh, but I do like the occasional Netflix binge.
Lecia Louise’s current single, ‘My Everything’, is available now via all major streaming platforms. She’s also got some exciting festival slots in the pipeline later in the year, which she’ll announce via her website lecialouisemusic.com and her socials.