Lisa Lambe, is one of Ireland’s best-known performers. Described by the Irish Times as the finest singer and actor of her generation, she is now poised to attract a global audience with her forthcoming album, ‘Juniper’. Lisa says she imagined ‘Juniper’ as a colorful story of nature, time and place: “The title track was sparked by a boldly gnarled juniper tree I spotted on an isolated bog road.”
‘Juniper’, released 3rd April, is Lisa’s sophomore album and she embarked upon it with producer Karl Odlum in 2019. It was written in the west of Ireland and recorded at the remote Attica Studios in County Donegal. Lisa describes the eleven-song collection as “a love letter to nature”. Her songwriting, although inspired by the Irish landscape and surroundings, is also thoroughly universal, modern and international.
Lisa’s keen poetic musical sensibilities and the soulfulness of her voice land the music somewhere between a Natalie Merchant (10,000 Maniacs) rock timbre and an Alison Kraus country rasp. The entire ‘Juniper’ album was recorded live in one room, Lambe says, with the mid-tempo first single, ‘Tiny Devotions’ capturing “the immediate and rare joy of musicians playing together during a recording session.” ‘Someone Like You’ is a slow-burn groove flecked with acoustic guitar and clear-eyed melodies; ‘Hunter’s Moon’ is a light blues number with a singalong chorus; and the title track ‘Juniper’ is an atmospheric ballad with gauzy harmonies and the low hum of a minor-key organ that paints an aural portrait of Ireland’s wild and haunted Western edges.
It’s no surprise that Lisa’s new songs conjure moods and visions: she graduated Trinity College Dublin with distinction as an actor, working with Ireland’s national theatre and starring in many smash hit plays. In 2019 alone she was on stage at The Abbey in two roles written specifically with her in mind: playing Lil in an adaptation of Edna O’Brien’s classic feminist novel The Country Girls, and as Cathy in a production of Dermot Bolgers’ Last Orders At The Dockside. Both were well-received by audiences and media alike, with Country Girls especially receiving numerous accolades.
Lisa is a frequent guest on national radio and television in Ireland and has appeared at world-renowned venues as lead singer with Celtic Woman that include Radio City Music Hall in New York City, Nokia Live in Los Angeles, Red Rocks in Colorado,. As a solo artist, Lisa has performed globally including Celtic Connections Scotland, Glastonbury UK as well as The Irish Arts Centres in London, Paris and New York. Ireland’s HotPress called Lisa’s voice “sumptuous”, RTE described her as a “national treasure,” and the Irish Times labeled the singing on her 2015 album, ‘Hiding Away’, “pure gold.” In 2018, Broadway World debuted her cover of the Guess Who classic, ‘These Eyes’.
Juniper is an especially meaningful project for Lisa. “The purpose of the project was to capture the lightning of making music,” she says. “I’m a live-in-the-moment artist and whether in the studio or onstage, I have to ground myself in the moment, feel what I’m receiving from the songwriting, and give something back to serve the song. With this recording, there was a huge desire in me to find the tribe of musicians and listeners to go on a completely new journey with me. All the elements came together, and the result is a vast landscape of colour and sound not tied to one nationality or genre but instead to the notion of a tribe.”
Welcome to the ‘Juniper’ tribe.
Thursday 10 September – Sugar Club, Dublin
More shows to be-rescheduled in August, September and October.