About "The Bar"
Multi-award-winning singer-songwriter Lo Marie speaks up mindfully and majestically while easing in and out of genres with grace and authenticity on her 7-song singles series. These tracks are bundled together as the album, The Bar, and together they explore empowering and enlightening narratives while stretching Lo Marie’s jazz sensibility to accommodate forays into funk, bluesy-pop, and theatrical rock. “I let the music speak for itself no matter what, and that meant removing genre barriers,” she explains.
Lo Marie’s latest album is both emotionally direct and musically eclectic. The Bar opens with the intimate cocktail jazz of the title track. Here, Lo Marie sings of betrayal with almost sinister sensuality, teasing out her powerful mix of emotions—anger, sorrow, and frustration—while vocalizing with controlled soulfulness. Her smoldering phrasing matches the sting of her lyrics. One choice passage reads: If the world was caving in/I hope you’d act and not be shy/Now I’m all alone and thinkin’/“Did I set the bar too high?”
On “The Gap” Lo Marie masterfully juxtaposes political commentary on the devaluing of women in professional settings with frisky funk-rock. She’s booty-shaking and thought-provoking with lines such as: Got me feelin’ might shady/just let me be a lady/Work hard to make an honest dollar get .80 on the hour. “I hold no bars in this song, but you can effect change with a smile on your face,” Lo Marie shares.
On “Fear Is A Vampire” Lo Marie is boldly self-reflective while being musically theatrical, pairing moody verses with rocking and rousing choruses. Her opening lines are: Fear is a vampire/I’m guilty/I let it feed on all my open wounds/A sweet sweet surrender safe and familiar. “That song is about questioning my own bar as it’s easy to be afraid and let yourself sit back and watch life from a distance,” she says.
Lo Marie self-produced her previous album, but opted to co-produce The Bar with her bassist, mix engineer and musical confidant, Conrad St. Clair. Since her last album, Lo Marie has learned to use the recording process as an additional creative tool, and she’s made detailed sonic choices to honor and enhance the music of The Bar. The album also features contributions from distinguished musicians such as guitarist Teddy Kumpel (Joe Jackson) and bassist Bryan Beller (The Aristocrats, Joe Satriani, Dethklok).
Lo Marie is an established artist breaking through boundaries personally and professionally. “This album has allowed me to look at myself and others around me, and make shifts in my life to reflect my values,” she details. “I hope The Bar encourages reflection and offers forth empowerment, both individually and culturally.”
2020 Artist of the Year
Madison Area Music Association Awards
Lo Marie, vocals and rhythm guitar
Chris Huntington, guitar
Teddy Kumpel, guitar
Conrad St. Clair, bass
Bryan Bellar, bass
Jay Frigoletto, keys
Jason Webb, keys
Lou Caldarola, drum kit
Tommy Crane, drum kit
Warren Wolf, vibraphone
Vince Szynborski, sax
Music and lyrics by Lo Marie (1-6)
Music and lyrics by Lo Marie and Conrad St. Clair (7)
Produced by Lo Marie and Conrad St. Clair
Recorded by many people in many places including Conrad St. Clair at Redrüm and Randy Poole at The Poole Room
Mixed and edited by Conrad St. Clair at Redrüm
Mastered by Jay Frigoletto at Mastersuite
Photo by Anais Shiba
"[It] is Lo Marie's vocals that stand out as the focal point, whether delivering soulful lines or jazzy scat singing and even when underlining her point with an unexpected curse, her crystalline and controlled voice is gorgeous to behold."
"Her lyrics are raw and relatable, and it's easy to hear her passion and drive within her songs. [The Gap] is well done and I can't wait for more from Lo Marie.
"If there was ever any doubt that the Madison music scene oozes not only with talent but also with class, one need look no further than Lo Marie. Her tasteful blend of jazz and soul comes alive on Le Reve, a seven-song album that is nothing short of world-class."