Bringing Back Upside Down: Interview with Leslie Mendelson

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We had the pleasure of interviewing Leslie Mendelson in Zoom video!

Brooklyn-based singer / songwriter Leslie Mendelson is backing her most recent studio album “If You Can’t Say Anything Nice…”, as well as a solo acoustic EP “In The Meantime,” which was recorded during the 2020 lockdown. Described by Relix review as an artist with “a loyal, intergenerational audience that embraces hippie, hipster, cafe and society crowds,” Leslie’s timeless musicality and evocative songwriting indeed cuts a wide spectrum. All the music writes that Leslie evokes “the influences of songwriters of the 1970s in the vein of Carole King and Carly Simon”, while Aquarius calls it “the closest thing you can get to a truly honest musical experience.”

Leslie Mendelson’s previous work, including the Grammy-nominated debut album “Swan Feathers” in 2009, and the 2017 album, “Love & Murder” dealt with matters of the heart. When it came time to compose the songs that make up “If You Can’t Say Anything Nice …”, however, she and her longtime writing partner Steve McEwan set out to examine the anxiety stemming from the climate. current socio-political with songs like “Drugs,” “I Need Something I Care About” and “Would You Give Up Your Gun.” This is the fitting extension of a more socially conscious perspective offered on “A Human Touch” – Leslie’s duet with Jackson Browne for the documentary film “5B”, released in 2019.

If Leslie Mendelson’s only collaboration with a legendary musician was Jackson Browne, it would be a moment worth celebrating. What is really telling is that Leslie also caught the eye of Bob Weir of The Grateful Dead who recorded a duet with her on Roy Orbison’s standard, “Blue Bayou”, while no less than Royalty. classic rock band The Who invited her to open two shows at Madison Square Garden last year. She was due to open three more dates for the group in 2020 which were unfortunately postponed due to the pandemic. With some of the most legitimate voices in rock music looking for Leslie, it leaves no doubt about the rarefied air she inhabits as an artist.

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