Lisa de Angelis still fights the demons in “My Sisters Blue Suitcase”

LA Music Review | Art, stories and advice

Spooky, dramatic, and mysterious!

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Hi Lisa, welcome to LA Music Review! Tell us a little bit about you and your music.

A reformed thrill-seeker with stories so weird and wild, Lisa De Angelis is a Brisbane-based firecracker with her Southern Gothic star on the rise. A Dark Americana base, hints of Justin Townes Earle, Shakey Graves and Townes Van Zandt, lashings of Sierra Ferrell, and a dusting of Ennio Morricone make up Lisa De Angelis’ cinematic Americana sound.

The charismatic youngest daughter of one of Australia’s top psychic mediums, Lisa’s art and path were always going to be unconventional—and she only picked up a guitar for the first time in 2017. Since graduating from The Country Music Association of Australia’s prestigious ‘Academy of Country Music’ and playing her first Tamworth Country Music Festival in 2019, Lisa has toured with and opened shows for some of Australia’s best, including Steve Kilbey (The Church), Phil Jamieson (Grinspoon), Nathan Cavaleri, Amber Lawrence, Hayley Jensen, Catherine Britt, and Melody Moko. Touring regional NSW together in 2021, Kilbey was so taken by Lisa’s style and sound that he penned a song for her to record due for release on her debut album.

A mentee of Australian country music heavyweights Fanny Lumsden (ARIA Award winner and 8 x Golden Guitar winner) and The Flood’s Kevin Bennett (2 x ARIA Award nominee and 7 x Golden Guitar winner), Lisa’s debut and sophomore songs have garnered airplay on ABC Country, CMT, and KIX Country Radio. Their lease of her third single ‘My Sister’s Blue Suitcase’ comes on the heels of a forced six-month hiatus for Lisa, after a lengthy bout of illness in 2022 took the hearing in her left ear—though losing her hearing barely slowed her down.

Later in 2022, she toured with ARIA Award-winner Amber Lawrence, played her first Gympie Music Muster as well as Brisbane’s Ekka, and in early 2023 Lisa was invited to perform at James Blundell’s ‘Down On The Farm’ Country Campout. Lisa recorded and co-produced ‘My Sister’s Blue Suitcase’ with her partner Paul Bain (Travis Collins, Kirsty Lee Akers) at their private studio in Brisbane. Scrappy, vulnerable, and heartfelt, ‘part Judy Garland, part Saturday Night Live comedian’ on stage, Lisa hails from southwest Sydney and cut her musical teeth in the south of the United States.

The hard-hitting singer is well-known as the firecracker with a penchant for the spooky and an ear for a melody and continues to impress audiences with her Americana sound and style.

Start streaming “My Sisters Blue Suitcase” here:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Congrats on the release! What was your inspiration when you were writing this project?

“This song, on a micro level, is about coming from a broken family and struggling with that as an adult trying to build relationships but also about that streak of anxiety and depressive disorders that runs through the women on my mother’s side, and how none of us quite managed to escape it.”

Released on April 28, 2023. Lisa reflected on her personal struggles and poured her heart into songwriting based on those experiences. “I was fiddling around with some guitar chords in my bedroom, sang the opening line as a placeholder for the melody, and the whole song just came pouring out in one sitting. I had no idea it was in there or wanted to come out. It was the middle of the night when it was finished, and I just put my head in my hands and cried,” says Lisa.

What is your vision for this song? What lessons would you like to impart to your audience?

Through Lisa’s self-struggles, she acknowledges the fight she embarked on and found “My Sister’s Blue Suitcase” to help her process healing and growth. “I have quite severe OCD and was only diagnosed about six years ago. It was like the heavens opened up, because suddenly there was an explanation for the cloud of depression and anxiety that had hung over so much of my life. Looking back now with a diagnosis, I can see how much of our lives have been shaped by something none of us knew we were fighting, and I wonder how far back that goes. ‘My Sister’s Blue Suitcase’ helped me heal, and I hope it can heal some other folks too.”

What is your favorite part of this body of work?

Lisa wrote her raw and real-life inspirational song through a collaborative process with her partner Paul Bain, who is the drummer for Travis Collins and Kristy Lee Akers, at their private studio in Brisbane. “It was a super collaborative, DIY process. I wrote the song, Paul played drums on it, engineered and mixed it, and we produced it together. The result is exactly what we’d hoped for. Cinematic, sweeping Dark Americana and Southern Gothic music with banjo and horns.”

Anything else we should know about? Future releases? 

Lisa is currently recording and co-producing her debut album, due for release in 2024.

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