Lauren Anderson – Won’t Stay Down
Self-Release – 2019
5 tracks; 17 minutes
Lauren Anderson is a singer/songwriter born in Chicago and now based in Nashville. This five-tracker is her fourth release but the first that this reviewer has heard. Lauren wrote all the material, one song in collaboration with Sandy Ramos; she also produced the recording with Taylor Kropp.
Lauren sings and is supported by Jimi Greene on guitar, William Adkins on keys, Hutch on bass and John Rodrigue on drums: Emmanuel Echem and Kiran Gupta add trumpets to one track and Meg Williams and Jenny Teator add background vocals to one.
Lauren has a strong voice with a touch of grit and she is certainly the prime focus of the songs. Opener “Honey, Call Me Baby” sends a tough message to a guy who is getting on Lauren’s nerves, the throbbing bass underpinning a stop-start rock rhythm. The background vocals add a smooth touch to “Too Little, Too Late”, a soulful ballad about a relationship that is beyond repair swept along by William’s churchy organ and delivered in emotional style by Lauren who moves from a deep, quiet vocal to full-on blues belter on the chorus.
The title track celebrates Lauren’s resilience as she will not stay down, whatever life throws at her, a funky guitar-driven tune. Lauren complains about the way that the music industry treats artists as she wants her “Cake” and everything else on a jagged tune fueled by wah-wah and decorated with the trumpets. The EP closes with the co-write, “Wild & Free” which recounts the tale of a girl who had straight A’s and academic potential but opted for the rock and roll life. The song has an attractive riff and a pounding chorus with a touch of country rock which is accentuated by Jimi’s solo, making it a very radio-friendly cut and this reviewer’s top pick.
There is little straight blues here but fans of strong female vocalists will want to check the release out.