We wanted to stay with the ‘something different’ theme today and discovered an artist with an interesting back story that is making some very interesting music. Debbie Chou grew up in Taiwan and started studying classical piano at the age of 4. It might be a stereotype or my wild imagination, but I picture her strong-minded father smacking her hands with a ruler to force her to practice on the piano for a minimum of 4 hours a day. As with many kids who were forced to stick with their lessons, it has now paid off.
It is also obvious very quickly when you hear her voice that vocal lessons were a part of her childhood as well. She continued her education in 2000, when she was accepted to the prestigious Hartt School at the University of Hartford to pursue studies in musical theater. After her first semester, she decided creating original music was her passion and she spent her remaining college years studying music composition.
In 2008 Ms. Chou joined the indie rock band The Barrens as a keyboardist. After getting up her performance chops, she began writing her own lyrics and original songs. The result is her debut solo album Lovebug. A quick one word description of the album would be “graceful.” It is comprised of gorgeous, heartfelt and personal lyrics over simple yet extremely elegant piano. The album begins with a few songs such as ‘My Darling’ that seem almost country with minimal guitar and piano behind Debbie’s strong vocals. The record builds and you begin to hear her musical talent. She really shows you her piano skills on the song ‘Sad Beautiful Eyes’ as she tickles her Steinway while belting out sexy, yet slightly depressing vocals. A little of that musical theater training shows here.
Bottom line: this is a very pretty album. A great album for a lonely Saturday night when you couldn’t find anyone to go out with and are stuck home alone with your thoughts. Just sit back and let the music sweep you away in Debbie Chou’s world. It may not be happy but it is beautiful to listen to.
Go listen for yourself at: