BETTER THAN THIS/I DON’T NEED YOU ANYMORE–I DON’T WANT TO BE HAPPY–I NEED A LITTLE SUNSHINE–I’M CHANGING–EYES SO BLUE–SHAKE IT–TELL ME–I WISH I WAS IN HEAVEN SITTING DOWN–RAIN IN THE SUMMERTIME–TAKE MY TROUBLES–THE TRUTH–LITTLE WING
Singer Lisa Mills is from the Gulf Coast of Alabama, where her musical influences run from blues to pop to soul and to gospel. And, Lisa has the incredible voice to do them all justice. It wasn’t that long ago that she toured with Big Brother and the Holding Company, her amazing vocals bringing audiences everywhere the iconic catalogue of Janis Joplin.
Her latest album, “I’m Changing,” is actually a revamped version of tracks recorded in 2005. Unhappy with the overall sound, she contemplated re-recording all the vocals, until she turned the project over to producer Trina Shoemaker, the first female to win a Grammy for album engineering. The results are nothing short of astounding, as Trina’s predominantly-sparse arrangements allow Lisa’s powerful vocals to come to the fore.
The set starts with her soulful take on the tale of a lyin’ lover, telling him “I deserve Better Than This and I Don’t Need You Anymore.” Rich Hirsch’s sweet electric guitar solo carries the bridge. “I Need A Little Sunshine” is set over a mid-tempo groove and traces Lisa’s gospel roots as she asks for an “angel from way up high!” She explores a touch of reggae in “Eyes So Blue,” while, with the renaissance of a new love on the horizon, she vows to “Take My Troubles off the wall and put ’em on the floor,” in this light, jazzy affair. Lisa closes the set with a brilliant rendition of “Little Wing,” augmented by her soul-drenched vocals and Corky Hughes’ slide guitar.
Lisa really shone on her explorations into the gospel vein. Hughes’ resonator guitar adds a somber touch to Lisa’s fervent read on “I Wish I Was In Heaven Sitting Down.” If that one wasn’t spectacular enough, “Tell Me,” one of Lisa’s originals dealing with the struggles along life’s journey, is done completely a cappella.
Lisa Mills’ voice is a beautiful instrument, and she pleases a broad scope of fans thru the ease in which she handles different styles and genres.’ “I’m Changing” has something for everyone from this gifted performer! Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow, The Nashville Blues Society.