Loretta Hagen' s music is best described as the cement and her lyrics the steel that completely make her a bridge between country, folk, rock and blues. With many influences from her past and now, her heroes range from Joni Mitchell, Bonnie Raitt, Mary Chapin Carpenter to REM and Chrissie Hynde, to name a few. Growing up in a musical family in N.J., Loretta was encouraged to join in 'basement jams' with her father and brother who played various instruments like accordion and harmonica, while mom sang along. It was mostly polkas and Italian songs, nothing like what Loretta was listening to on the radio, but it gave her a passion for singing, playing guitar and writing songs that began her musical journey. Since then, Hagen's success has been due to a combination of incredible talent and a lot of hard work. Hooking up with old high school musician friends who from time to time played in various local bands together, Loretta and her old pals formed a band called Down To The Wire who performed in the New York/ NJ area, building a large devoted fan base that allowed the band to work and tour the area consistently. The members of the group consist of Hagen's husband, Gary, on guitar, Dave Barry on fiddle, Walt Pickwoad on bass and Debbie Maggiulli on drums. Loretta also performed solo, cutting her teeth as a singer/songwriter in Greenwich Village, Hoboken and the tri-state area until she moved to Nashville to hone her skills as a writer and performer. After a five year stay, she moved back to her home state and is enjoying reconnecting with her fan base and expanding on it, recently being highlighted in the NY times. These performances and her CD releases have landed Hagen many opening act slots for national artists (Steve Forbert, Richie Havens, Johnny Winter, David Allan Coe to name a few) as well as unsolicited rave reviews of her shows and her works. A review of a Louisville show described Loretta '..with the vocal prowess of EmmyLou Harris and Bonnie Raitt...'. One review in Sweden's Aftonbladet recommended Loretta's CD to be one of ten purchases for summer's listening. Through the wonders of the Web, she has been 'discovered' all over the globe by radio programmers whose stations allow them to operate outside the confines of traditional top 40 playlists, which are typically orchestrated by major labels. These music industry mavericks have given Loretta a share of voice by airing her work on college, AAA and Americana radio stations. In addition to Sweden, Australia and the UK have also embraced Hagen. One DJ cites, 'I found her on the internet, downloaded some sound samples and had one question - Why haven't I heard her before?' Loretta's most recent product is an 13 song CD entitled 'Something More' which started as a 4 song demo produced by Pat McInerney (Nanci Griffith). Hagen added 9 new tunes to round out this cross-genre folk / rock /country /blues release. This captivating CD is filled with lush lyrics that are as real and honest as the artist herself and are accompanied by a mosaic of rich heart-tugging and memorable melodies. Old friend, Bob Delevante, of The Delevante's, guests on vocals on the song 'I'm Coming Up'.
You May Also Like
Page 1 of