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Saturday, May 16, 2009

Lady Lea's Big Voice!

Sometimes I think the best voices are hidden from a wide audience on purpose. Otherwise an expressive, warm voice as Lea Roberts' would have been as well known as Pattie Labelle's, for example. (Although I consider Patti Labelle the most obnoxious screamer far and wide, and I cannot see what made her such a success.)
I've never heard of Lea Roberts up to now, and it was impossible to find any information on this gifted artist. I really wish I could find at least one shred or another about her life. I think she definitely belongs in a league with the true divas in Soul music.
The album these songs are from, Lady Lea, is a gem, showcasing Lea's versatility of which I try to to give you an idea via the posted tracks.
She is one of the few female vocalists I actually enjoy listening to. Her voice is reminiscent of Aretha Franklin's and Gloria Gaynor's, in my opinion.
She had two major albums released between 1975 and 1976, Lady Lea and Excuse Me, I Wanna Talk To You.

Her third album, My Silent Place, was released in 1982 and shows yet another capability of this incredibly versatile singer. On My Silent Place Lea's mellowed voice blends harmoniously with beautiful jazz arrangements.

It's been pretty difficult to decide on only a handful tracks to post while the rest of her album was playing in the background.


Jason Elias said...

This is really obscure. I had files from both of the '70s albums. Got to say I like the first one a bit better, such a solid album. The second one is growing on me.

Really I don't know why she was signed to UA, given the distribution deal back then, Blue Note might have been a better fit. I remember seeing a pic from her press kit on eBay a while ago but no info on her...

Raggedy said...

It makes me angry to think that we are/have been bombarded with tons of mediocre and even downright untalented singers while those with great talent and skills never get a fair chance ...