L.A. Music: Laura Jean Anderson

If you already have a playlist featuring the likes of Alabama Shakes, Leon Bridges, or Norah Jones, it’s time to add singer-songwriter and guitarist Laura Jean Anderson to the mix.

She’s an artist who seems hell-bent on making fresh hay out of the American roots tradition, and her EP Lonesome No More provides multiple examples of her stop-you-in-your tracks voice and her finely crafted tunes. (Anderson studied at CalArts and honed her skills in the L.A. club scene.)

The songs sweep through the spectrum of human emotion, so there’s something for every mood. When we're feeling mellow, we like the finger-style folk guitar and laid-back whistling that mark the title track. When we've got romance on our mind, we go for “Love You Most,” with its soulful 1970s-era strings arrangement and pulsing organ fills will hit the spot. When we're in need of some inspiration to take action, we crank up “Silence Won’t Help Me Now,” which boasts the kind of anthemic chorus and power-pop production that gets our protest fists raised in the air.

Get a Taste

“Take It Back Now” fuses in one track much of what Anderson unspools in multiple songs: soaring vocals, a surprising arrangement with clashes of synthesizers and electric guitar, and a wide dynamic range. And it will make you wonder if this Seattle-area native is as inspired by the loud-soft-loud tendencies of bands hailing from her Pacific Northwest hometown as she is by classic Americana.