Lisa Mednick Powell

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Lisa Mednick-Powell is a musician and songwriter who resides in Twentynine Palms, California (close to Joshua Tree) with her husband and bassist extraordinaire, Kip Powell. Together they have a band called "Arroyo Rogers," which plays country hits from the 60s and 70s, along with songs penned by the Powells. As a keyboard player she has worked on stages and in studios from New York to New Orleans, and from Austin to Auckland. She has worked with too many artists to mention, known and unknown. Some highlights for Lisa were working with Earl King, Alejandro Escovedo, Ray Wylie Hubbard, James McMurtry, The Chills, and Juliana Hatfield--just to name a few. Playing original music, both hers and that of others, is her strength. She has an uncanny ability to find just the right part for "your" songs. While living in New Orleans she was part of the popular rock and roll ensemble, The SongDogs. They have recently reunited to record an album of fresh songs. Since age seven, Lisa has pounded the piano, studying the classical greats, some jazz (with the late great John Malachi), and lots of rock and country. She also played saxophone for many years, studying for a time with the late great Charles Neville in New Orleans. While in New Orleans (1984-1990) she also learned to play the accordion. Lisa Mednick-Powell has a new album out after quite a long hiatus. The album is called Blue Book. Her previous albums, Artifacts of Love and Semaphore were critically well-received, and Blue Book is a logical follow-up to those albums. Lisa's artistic concepts and themes have remained consistent throughout all of her works. Midwest Record Blog puts it this way: "She has stayed true to her cause over the years." Fred Mills, of Blurt Magazine, writes: "Blue Book is Powell’s third album, and considering it’s been nearly 16 years since her previous album, 2002’s acclaimed Semaphore, the obvious question becomes, why the delay? Part of the reason is that she was busy getting a Master’s degree, but really, the answer resides in these ten remarkable tunes: She was taking the time to live her life, learn its many lessons, and turn those experiences into songwriting gold." In Stereo Embers, Dave Cantrell writes: "Similar to the Band’s mythic epiphanies or the sand mandalas of Tibetan monks, the songs on Blue Book seem held in this sort of tension of timelessness that makes them feel both fleeting and stamped forever on your music-listening heart. It’s not a trick, there’s no sleight-of-anything going on, they convince you of that from the very start. It’s just how they arrive, as if they’re fully-formed souls aware of their own mortality." Because Lisa wants the music to convey the emotion as much as the lyrics do, every song is a mini-soundtrack that swirls around dark and truthful lyrics. Mednick Powell writes songs that take you on a winding road straight to the heart of the matter. Her voice is unadorned, but it suits the songs, and her profound poetry is drenched in evocative layers of sound that wrap around her sinuous lyrics and give them credence. In that regard, Lisa's new album is true to her previous two releases. "Artifacts of Love" and "Semaphore" were hailed with words that offer a glimpse into her new album, Blue Book: "Artifacts of Love, Mednick’s 1994 debut album, earned praise as a dark, swirling gumbo (Utne Reader) marked by artful songcraft that is steeped in the Americana of the Band... (Rolling Stone)." "Mednick's a poet of the first order...ethereal but never fey. She has a secret, and maybe that's the semaphore the title song refers to, Lisa Mednick's private code for the heart and mind." --from the Austin Chronicle. "After a few listens you get the feeling that this album is on to something. It just has that feel...she's fashioned a classic album that will stand the test of time...The next place you see this one mentioned will be on some end of year best of lists." --from Village Records "While Mednick writes careful lyrics with strange words like "anchorite," she doesn't consider herself one of those navel-gazing singer/songwriters. Instead, songwriting is just another aspect of building a musical tapestry."--from All Music Guide "Mednick writes some of the prickliest, most emotionally unsettling material this side of Lucinda Williams. Her vocal lilt...belies the music's dark thematic undertow, through songs that evoke life's fragility and finitude."--from Amazon.com