Lisa Loeb Biography

Lisa Anne Loeb, 11 March 1968, Bethesda, Maryland, USA. Singer-songwriter Loeb grew up in Dallas and attended Brown University, where she played in a band with her friend Liz Mitchell and Duncan Sheik. Relocating to New York she recorded a demo tape and toured incessantly with her band Nine Stories, comprising Tim Bright (guitar), Jonathan Feinberg (drums) and Joe Quigley (bass). She sprang to fame in 1994 when her friend, actor Ethan Hawke, persuaded the producers of the movie Reality Bites to use her song ‘Stay (I Missed You)’ as its theme. The result was a US number 1 despite Loeb not yet having a recording contract. That situation was quickly rectified with the intervention of Geffen Records, who are alleged to have offered over $1 million for her signature. Some of the furore then died down while Loeb set about crafting her debut album, the first evidence of which arrived with the release of the US Top 20 single ‘Do You Sleep?’ in September 1995. The accompanying album was co-produced with long-standing colleague Juan Patiño and Nine Stories. The songs were drawn from over 10 years worth of writing, notably the very early composition ‘Garden Of Delights’. In press interviews of the time she was keen to salute rock influences as diverse as Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin and Fugazi, rather than the acoustic singer-songwriters with whom she was most readily identified in the press. Tracks such as ‘Alone’ and ‘It’s Over’ bore this out, though even the quieter selections were imbued with sarcasm and Loeb’s confrontational instincts.

Loeb’s second album featured Quigley and new musicians Mark Spencer (guitar) and Ronny Crawford (drums). Introduced by the minor hit ‘I Do’, Firecracker was a confident and mature collection that proved less popular than her debut. A change of labels ensued with Loeb signing to A&M Records. She made her debut for the label in 2002 with Cake And Pie, collaborating with songwriters of varied style, from Dweezil Zappa (Loeb’s boyfriend) to Glen Ballard. The album gained little promotion because of A&M’s restructuring, prompting Loeb to ask to be released from her contract. She revamped the album, replacing a number of tracks and re-recording a few others, and re-released the album in 2003 under the title Hello Lisa. The following year she teamed up with old college friend Elizabeth Mitchell to record the children’s album, Catch The Moon and having signed to Zoë, a subsidiary of Rounder Records, she released her own new album the same year.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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