My friend Keith took me to a small coffee shop show the other night to see a buddy of his on a rickety piano and a sub-par amp system equivalent to those at a high school talent show. I've talked about being jaded a bit and seeing typical big venue shows leave me frustrated and wondering where the showmanship and passion escaped on their rise in the industry. That reason alone is why I often dive into the local music scene to hopefully catch glimpses of performers like Lesley Kernochan. She is not for everyone and she'd probably not take offense that statement. You'd most definitely pass her on the street and in a line-up of would-be performers, she might even be the last one you'd guess to beat-box, roar the hymns of gospel, rise through elongated falsetto cries, and tickle the ivories while cracking jokes. She blindsided me when I watched this Sarah, Plain and Tall type approach the stage.
Lesley Kernochan - Bob Cash & Johnny Dylan
Comparisons are inevitable when trying to explain an artist that is not mainstream. Lesley Kernochan - think some of Lily Allen in a 1950's Betty Bop bar. Think Dar Williams with more sass. Maybe a Nellie McKay on the rising. Think Tori Amos in a burlesque lounge. Kernochan, a recent composer/singer/songwriter Boulderite transplant from Portland, where she received her degree in Music Composition, is...well...a wanted squirt in the eye from a grapefruit. Her music is sassy, fun, full of heartbreak and shots of daily ponderings. Her second album, The Pickle Jar, is available now from her own label, Maple Syrup Music.
Lesley Kernochan - Yes
Full of tracks that distinguish themselves apart from one another due to varying melodies, stories and instrumentation, The Pickle Jar, as Lesley puts it, is "a collection of songs about a few pickles I've found myself in, that turned out to be blessings." Humor yourself and dive in deeper to find out the footprints she has left by investigating her mini-life story available on her Myspace. After time in Portland and travels in South Africa to help the AIDS crisis, I'm glad I can spend a relaxing night in Boulder laughing and being torn by the lyrics and presence of Kernochan.