Folk singer-songwriter Lucy Kaplansky knocked my socks off and clear across the room with the opening track on “Everyday Street.” Not only does it include harmonies from Shawn Colvin, but Kaplansky also name-drops Richard and Linda Thompson, Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris.
“Old Friends” is a look back at Kaplansky’s friendship with Colvin that dates back to the ’80s Greenwich Village folk scene. “So here we are in your hotel room, singing Gram and Emmylou/20 years, 20,000 roads have brought me back to you.” If there was an award category for best opening track of a record, “Old Friends” would be a serious contender. Kaplansky told me that Colvin wept halfway through the song when Kaplansky first played it for her, which led to her own tears and Colvin telling her it was the best gift anyone had ever given her. “She asked to sing the harmony on it when I told her I was going to record it.”
There seems to be a trend lately of singer-songwriters turning their focus toward nature....The latest remarkable record in this thread is Lucy Kaplansky’s Everyday Street. Kaplansky, who also has a PhD in clinical psychology, has a well-honed gift for making sense of the everyday, mundane details of life (“February morning, the news was on,” she sings in “Keeping Time”). Somehow when she sings these little notes, life’s apparently disparate dots connect, and we get an image that is equal parts heartbreaking, hopeful, and chocked full of humanity. On the album’s opening track, Kaplansky sings along with her old friend Shawn Colvin, about their early days as singer-songwriters, and all wisdom they’ve gained in hindsight. The song is equal parts nostalgia and gratitude, told through vignettes packed with the kinds of details that hint at the truth without feeling the need to spell it out. (“Suspending notes that don’t belong / seconds and sixths, whatever we want.”) READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE
On her spare, luminous new record Everyday Street, Lucy Kaplansky wrote a memoir in music .... The fullness and frailty of life pour out from its songs......“Old Friends” tells the beautiful story of her enduring connection with Shawn Colvin. The finished version is lovely beyond words and music, a glimpse into something special....The other songs on Everyday Street are just as good. READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE
THE NEW YORKER
Lucy Kaplansky is a truly gifted performer with a bag full of enchanting songs.
Kaplansky weaves...fragile lives together, making even tenuous connections as palpable as flesh and blood.
NATIONAL PUBLIC RADIO – Lucy Kaplansky on Mountain Stage
Kaplansky closes with “Sleep Well,” a heartbreaking master class in making the personal universal.
THE BOSTON GLOBE: ON “REUNION” KAPLANSKY KEEPS IT IN THE FAMILY
On her latest album, “Reunion,” Lucy Kaplansky sings about her parents, her cousins, her daughter, and, naturally, herself. Then again, she is singing about you too.
As Kaplansky’s longtime producer Ben Wittman notes, “It’s funny how she is hitting these bigger themes at the same time she is going deeper and more personal in her writing.”
“Reunion” is Kaplansky’s most assured record to date, bounding from the delightful Amy Correia cover “Life Is Beautiful” to the stinging kiss-off “Gone Gone Gone” without swerving off course. The theme of “family” serves as a compass as Kaplansky charts a course from “Scavenger,” a song about a refugee rebuilding life on the move, to “Sleep Well,” a tender goodbye to a mother. READ ENTIRE ARTICLE
THE IRISH TIMES
Lucy displays an astute and inclusive awareness of the human condition.
PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER March 13, 2015 “Lucy Kaplansky and Richard Shindell join forces at World Café Live”
It took singer-songwriters Lucy Kaplansky and Richard Shindell nearly 20 years to get around to making a record together, but only 24 hours for devoted fans to push past their initial goal of $40,000 to subsidize the resulting folk-roots effort, Tomorrow You’re Going. READ ENTIRE ARTICLE
Listening to Lucy Kaplansky’s music is a pretty good way to get to know her.
The 53-year-old’s catalog is filled with near-confessional contemplations she composes with her husband and writing partner Richard Litvin. Her 2004 album “The Red Thread” considered 9/11 and the arrival of her adopted daughter, each in stories both specific and meticulous. On her most recent collection, last year’s “Reunion,” she ruminated on the passing of her parents, in intimate detail. Her work is a reminder of the powerful allure possible in art delivered without obfuscation, and makes her an exception to the old maxim about separating art from artist. READ ENTIRE ARTICLE
Kaplansky beautifully augments her soulful vocals and stunning songwriting with stylish guitar playing. She’s backed on select tracks by Kevin Barry on lap steel as well as Jon Herington and Duke Levine’s perfectly sympathetic guitar work. Moody, mysterious and majestic.