Howie Day w/ Leslie DiNicola 10/25Wednesday, October 25 2017 6:00pm Doors / 8:00pm Start
- Front Premier
at City Winery Atlanta
Howie Day’s emotionally resonant lyrics and inventive melodies have earned him both critical praise and a legion of devoted fans. He is known for his energetic, heartfelt shows, where he connects with audiences through the strength of his songwriting and his quirky sense of humor. Day’s warm tenor voice “soars into fluttering, high registers, but also grates with real, pleading grit,” as one critic put it. After sales of over a million records and two Top 10 hits, Day is back on the road in support of his new studio album, Lanterns.
A native of Bangor, Maine, Day began playing piano at age five and guitar at age 12. By 15, he was writing his own songs and performing across New England. Shortly after graduating high school, Day became a fixture at college coffeehouses across the U.S. He wrote, financed and released his first effort, Australia, which was named Best Debut Album at the 2001 Boston Music Awards. The Boston Globe called Day “gorgeously seasoned, far beyond his years” with “a brave, beautiful singing voice.” During his relentless touring schedule, Day began experimenting with effects pedals and loop-sampling techniques as he performed, layering live percussion with vocal harmonies and guitar parts to become a veritable one-man band. He went on to sell over 30,000 copies of Australia as he navigated the independent music scene and continued to hone his craft.
After signing with Epic Records, Day released his major-label debut, Stop All The World Now, and hit the road to support it. The constant promotion paid off: Stop was certified gold in the U.S. and spawned two Top 10 radio hits: “She Says” and the platinum single “Collide.” After three subsequent years of intense worldwide touring, Day moved to Los Angeles and returned to the studio. His next release, Sound the Alarm, built on the emotionally complex spirit of its predecessor and delved into Day’s journey from indie wunderkind to platinum-selling artist. Its lead single, “Be There,” became a staple at modern AC radio.
After parting ways with Epic and relocating to New York City in 2010, Day released the Ceasefire EP on his own label, Daze. Over the next two years, as a reenergized Day toured North America, Australia and Asia, new songs began to emerge and evolve. His fourth full-length album, Lanterns, was recorded in Boston with producer and longtime friend Mike Denneen. Awash with a warm musicality and unique instrumentation, the album also features guest vocals from Aimee Mann. Lanterns was released in April 2015.
Nationally acclaimed singer-songwriter Leslie DiNicola has a rare gift for the sonic snapshot—through the poetic accessibility of her writing style she captures personal moments with a universal perspective.
“I want to share my experiences in song so that others can see their lives mirrored and pass through the door of whatever is troubling them or holding them back,” the NYC-based artist explains. Each of Leslie’s releases is a photo journal, a collection of “in the moment,” unposed music portraits that reveal the core of herself and her artistry. Her latest, the EP Wake Up, is her most well composed and elegantly revealing body of work.
It’s a potent sensibility that has endeared her to critics, fans, other established artists, and industry vets. Things To Do, See & Eat in NYC succinctly enthuses: “This girl is going places.” October Project’s Julie Flanders says: “DiNicola pours her full soul and tremendous heart into songs you will recognize for their mysterious way of telling your secret story with her powerful voice.” Leslie has worked with such respected music biz names as Ron Allaire (Keith Richards, Madonna, David Bowie, Shakira), Julian Coryell (Aimee Mann, Leonard Cohen, Jewel, Alanis Morisette), Erich Gobel (John Mayer, Ray Charles), Mark Schulman (P!nk, Cher, Foreigner), and Ellis Traver (Diane Birch, Fischerspooner, Sean Lennon, and Mark Ronson).
Leslie is also a highly in-demand artist singing the “National Anthem” at major league sporting events across the country.
Leslie experienced a creative watershed time period recording her previous EP, Draw Back Your Bow (2011). This was a sophisticated and imaginative covers collection that resonated deeply with the public, and her mesmerizing renditions of Journey’s “Separate Ways” and U2’s “With Or Without You” peaked on the CMJ charts all over the country. Simply put: Studying world-class pop songs helped Leslie become a sharper and more expressive songwriter.
There is a gracefulness to her previous five-song collection; Some Greener Yard feels quaint, emotionally direct, and hopeful. The elegantly elegiac “Weight” tenderly salutes a deceased friend. The redemptive “It’s Alright” features pastoral folk guitars and subtle gospel-y organs and sends a message of love and warmth to a friend who lost her father. And the euphoric Motown-esque-meets-1980s new wave “Stay” brightens the EP with the uplifting message that people can always fall in love and still feel that childlike wonder of new relationships.
Wake Up is Leslie’s third project with Julian Coryell, and he has been an essential artistic ally during this period of her career. “Julian doesn’t allow anything between me and the song except the truth,” she explains. With this six-song collection, DiNicola dove deeply into experimenting with production and vocal layering. And the results are magnificent. Each song combines the emotionally resonant lyrics that her fans adore with wildly sophisticated and catchy melodies that will echo in your head… and heart for days. Wake Up is DiNicola’s greatest accomplishment to date.
“When I look back at the work I’ve done, it’s like going through scrapbooks,” Leslie says thoughtfully. “Each song is like a photograph of the person I was in a particular moment. It tells a story that my soul needed to tell. I hope these songs comfort people and give them an inherent sense of hope against life’s sorrow… because that’s why I listen to music. And that’s why I write music.”