If you go
What: Lucy Rose and Big Al Anderson eTown taping
When: 7 p.m. Friday
Where: eTown Hall, 1535 Spruce St., Boulder, 303-443-8692
More info: etown.org
Lucy Rose is in the midst of her first major American tour. Her debut album has been out for a year, but only just appeared in the States last month.
Calling from what she said would be a seven-hour car ride out of Chicago, with another seven hours on the road coming the next day, she said she was looking forward to seeing the middle of America.
“I’m looking forward to seeing some tumbleweeds,” she said.
The 24-year-old singer/songwriter hopped around the U.S. a bit in the spring, playing shows in L.A. and New York and appearing at South By Southwest Music Festival in Austin. She released Like I Used To in September last year and was working hard to get some traction outside of the U.K.
“It was like I really had to fight to get it out in America,” she said. “I’m just pleased that it’s out, really. It’s exciting to get the songs out to a fresh audience.”
The record is pretty and gentle. While it covers some painful territory, like getting over heartbreak in “Middle of the Bed,” it’s uplifting. When NME reviewed the record for it’s U.K. debut, Tom Howard wrote, “‘Like I Used To’ hugs you hard then hands you a bread roll fresh from the oven.” Her process was home cooked, so the comfort food result isn’t surprising.
“All the songs were written in my bedroom, and when it came to recording, I was still kind of working out how I was going to do it,” Rose said. “When it came time to record it, I went back to my parents and used the family room, and me and my band and the producers kind of moved in and started recording.”
It was only after she had a finished product that she sought out a record label. Naturally, she found that approach rewarding — doing things her own way and then finding praise and support. The same goes for her autobiographical songwriting. It’s simpler to do it and see how people react than worry about how personal problems and feelings will be received.
“Yeah, embarrassingly, all of my songs have a personal connection,” she said. “It’s really nerve wracking. Some songs are more difficult than others to sing in front of people. It’s rewarding to see how people do react to it.”
One of those tougher songs, “Gamble,” made a rare appearance during one of her live shows recently after someone asked to hear it. Rose said she doesn’t normally play the song live because it can be emotionally rough, but knowing that someone identifies is enough motivation.
As for what she’ll play with guitar legend Big Al Anderson during her eTown taping on Friday, she doesn’t know.
“I actually sort of dread it a little bit, the last minute collaborations,” she said.
But she wouldn’t be touring America and sharing a stage with Anderson at eTown Hall if she couldn’t hold her own, and all evidence points to her ability to do better than just keep up.