Music

Laura Jean Anderson Drops New One-Take EP, ​​'Live from Hotel Studio Earth' (album stream) (premiere)

Photo: Ellyn Jameson

Folk-pop artist Laura Jean Anderson's Live from Hotel Studio Earth features compelling one-take renditions of her original songs, as well as a White Stripes cover.

Los Angeles singer-songwriter Laura Jean Anderson has hit the ground running since the release of her Lonesome No More EP last fall. Since then, the folk-pop artist has continued to garner a significant reputation on the California circuit while also having toured with the Dip and Lauren Ruth Ward. A personable songwriter whose music is often steeped in the rebellion of her youth, Anderson carries an edge rarely seen as sharp or resilient in other corners of her cut of the indie folk scene. Now, she is following up on the energy put forward with her performance in Lonesome No More with a live reprise EP.

In Live from Studio Hotel Earth, Anderson presents six live one-take performances of the songs presented on Lonesome No More, alongside a cover of the White Stripes' "I'm Lonely (But I'm Not That Lonely Yet)". Throughout, the singer-songwriter's resilient spark shines. In a live studio setting, there's better room to observe her compelling performance capabilities in unvarnished form. Making no doubt about it, Anderson establishes herself further as a multi-faceted tour de force of the indie folk scene through her compelling one-takes, often coming across with her own serving of rock grit along the way.

Celebrating the premiere of Live from Studio Hotel Earth, Anderson took part in a Q&A with PopMatters.

What made Studio Hotel Earth the perfect place to record your first live EP?

It was special because Hotel Earth is my dear friend Theo Karon's back garage space that he had just built. He had renovated a garage space by himself and made a beautiful studio out of it. Theo and I have worked together on a lot of projects, and it always seems like the timing works out I am the first to record in each of his new spaces. Working with someone you have known for a decade and have been to hell and back with creates such a deeper experience for the recording experience and music.

This release features a cover of the White Stripes' "I'm Lonely (But I'm Not That Lonely Yet)". What about this song do you connect to that saw its inclusion on your EP?

When I heard this song for the first time, I instantly related to it. In this tune, Jack has this way of describing all these scenarios of wanting to give up because you are so lonely- those "last straw" moments in life that we all go through. But each phrase ends with a statement of perseverance in the line "I ain't that lonely yet". There's this post-depression aspect to it that I relate to. And also a self-reflective sense of humor. You're lonely, but you're holding your head up and getting through it. It's been a tough year of my life, and playing this song reminds me that there's always something that's worth living for no matter how hard shit gets. And laughing at my crazy melodramatic loneliness can be the best thing for me sometimes.

With this being your debut live recording, I'm wondering how its development process differed from your previous experience creating the Lonesome No More EP.

It was a much quicker process. We went in and recorded it all in one day. Mixing and mastering that week then it was done. There wasn't time to overthink it or have a million edits. It was intended to be raw and honest, and if there were mistakes or funny moments, I wanted to keep them. With recording "Lonesome No More" EP, there was much more production and demoing, multiple versions and edits. The record took almost a year from start to finish, and there were a lot more elements thrown into the mix.

Anything else you'd like to share?

Just want to thank everyone who is listening to the tunes. They mean so much to me and its such a cool experience being able to share the raw, stripped down versions with everyone.

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