A piano, a notebook, and an assortment of musical styles and talented friends marks a singularity in Laura Fisher’s music.Fisher, a New Jersey native, is currently a junior studying at Marymount Manhattan College in New York City. She is pursuring a dual major in Psychology and Communications.
Even though her academic goals are certainly imposing, Fisher devotes every possible moment available to her music and writing.
Fisher released her first album, “Fancy Animals,” in the summer of 2009, with the help of WCU junior Kyle Pesce and Mike Britt.
“Fancy Animals” was recorded at Right Now Recording Studios in Blackwell, NJ.
Her powerful and eclectic voice proves capable of both paralleling and contrasting the instrument parts of her music.
It is drastically clear that Fisher utilizes the voice as its own instrument, and not solely as a mechanism for providing words to song.
Q: Who all contributed to the recording of “Fancy Animals,” and what would you call the official artist title behind the record?
A: “The official artist name for “Fancy Animals” is mine (Laura Fisher), and the main collaborators for the album were Kyle Pesce and Mike Britt.
We decided to use my name rather than multiple ones or a bandname because Kyle insisted the songs were still written by me at their core, and a true band hadn’t been completely constructed or involved with the project.
Kyle did a lot of the instrumental arranging and played drums (kit and djembe), bass, melodica, synth, and sang backing vocals on the album. Mike played guitar (electric and brief acoustic) as well as backing vocals on a couple of songs.
I wrote the songs, sang lead vocals, and played piano/synth.”
Q: What are your favorite/least favorite tracks on the album and why?
A: My favourite track on the album is Every Corner because of the way it builds; the emotions behind it were captured perfectly with the music.
I had a lot of fun recording vocal harmonies and love the guitar/bass solos.
My least favourite track is They, because we wanted to give it a really industrial sound but it came out as a sort of weird mix between that and an acoustic version. it just didn’t end up sounding the way we’d imagined.
Q: When did you begin playing piano?
A: I began playing piano when I was six years old.
I was strictly a classical/jazz pianist for about seven years, competing and performing constantly on a local to state-wide, to a national level.
I started writing lyrics pretty early on — I have folders full of lyrics from at least the time I started playing piano — but never really started making lyrics into songs and pursuing song writing until I was about fifteen.
Q: How often do you find yourself writing lyrics? Do you have any sort of individual you’ve looked up to for inspiration?
A: I write all the time! poetry, lyrics, short prose, e-mails to others or myself, traditional letters, collages…writing is a compulsive fever for me, one I somehow wouldn’t be healthy and fully alive without.
I don’t really have any specific role model for writing that I can think of, but I love reading and a wide variety of music, so I’m sure I’ve taken all sorts of inspiration from countless authors and artists.
I’m probably most consciously influenced by the writing of those closest to me; they continually blow me away with their originality, honesty, and creativity.
Q: Do you have any other hobbies that you consider yourself passionate about?
A: I love film in a way that’s very akin to my relationship with music.
I have a few scripts in the works and am an avid movie-watcher.
I also love fashion but am in no position to be a real designer-wearer — I just love colours, composition, the idea of expressing yourself by any means possible — and the way you dress is certainly one of them.
I’m also starting to learn drums and have studied opera on-and-off. I love travel and the outdoors, just living a large and passionate life…experiencing everything, connecting with people. I also really love cats.
Q: What are you currently working on?
A: I am hoping to record a new album with Kyle soon and our re-organized/finalized band, still presently unnamed.
I recently recorded a live-session EP around New Years — four cover songs that were basically an improvised experience with some extremely talented musicians who are all current or former students at New England Conservatory.
The tracks included two hip-hop songs from the 80s that I hope to use in a documentary I want to make eventually.
I’m also constantly collaborating with friends and recently played keyboard/sang back-up vocals as part of the liveband for my friend’s musical project called The Ne’er-do-Well at the Trocadero in Philadelphia, so you know, I’m keeping busy.
Laura Fisher’s music can be heard on her Myspace page, www.myspace.com/laurafisher. Tracks included on the media player ranger from song featured on “Fancy Animals” to a cover of “Nude” by Radiohead. The page also lists her full discography and musical collaborators.
Tara Tanzos is a third-year student majoring in English and minoring in creative writing. She can be reached at TT649875@wcupa.edu.