Lisa Hartt releases new single, “Tell The Truth” (Interview)

Lisa Hartt

Canadian Singer-Songwriter Lisa Hartt Releases “Tell the Truth” From Upcoming Arrival Album

Lisa Hartt‘s new EP, Arrival, is a deeply personal and heartfelt collection of songs that has been 40 years in the making. The second single, “Tell the Truth,” is out now.

Lisa was born in Montreal but grew up in La Tuque and Dorval, Quebec. At the tender age of 10, she embarked on a long music career, taking her to many parts of the world, which included London and Cairo. During the 1960s and 1970s, Lisa toured extensively with various established musicians before returning to Canada, where she founded The Lisa Hartt Band. Throughout the 80s and 90s, Lisa explored multiple genres of music before eventually combining her vocal talents with world instruments and the ancient practice of reiki. As a result, she became a reiki master and developed her music into a holistic and transformative experience.

Lisa showcases her ability to lay every emotion on the table and tell a story that speaks to health, mindfulness, body, and spiritual themes. The single is a powerful anthem that encourages listeners to reject others’ attempts to dictate their emotions and to trust their inner voice. Through her music, Lisa reminds us to stay true to ourselves and to honour our feelings, no matter what others may say.

With her new EP, Arrival, Lisa Hartt has poured her heart and soul into a deeply personal and reflective musical journey. After settling in Port Credit, Ontario, Lisa took the time to reflect on 40 years of recovery and clean sobriety, drawing on her own experiences to create a collection of vulnerable and courageous tracks.

These songs had been floating around in Lisa’s mind for some time, but it wasn’t until the pandemic hit that she decided to record them. With the help of Chris Birkett, a multi-talented producer, and musician from 2Mounties, Lisa brought her vision to life. She explored the many different genres that have influenced her over the years.

The vocals and acoustics were recorded in Lisa’s home studio, giving the EP a raw and intimate feel that captures the essence of her music. Lisa’s voice has undertones of Joni Mitchell, incredibly vibrant, drawing inspiration from this iconic woman to create something unique.

From gentle folk to groovy soul to the occasional hard rock, Lisa’s influences come together to create a backbone that runs right through Arrival. Each track tells a story, inviting listeners to join Lisa on a journey that is at once personal and universal. Lisa Hartt has created something extraordinary with this EP, and we are privileged to share her journey.

“Tell the Truth” is a song that reflects a hero’s journey, from the quest to the journey into despair and the plunge into the abyss, to finally emerging fresh and clear-eyed with the knowledge of the truth shining like a golden beacon. What sets this song apart is its upbeat feel, funky bass, driving chorus, and smooth breakdown.

The lively, joyful sounds, including the use of an accordion, give the song a happy-go-lucky vibe that almost makes you want to dance. The funky bass provides a groovy foundation for the music, creating a solid rhythm that drives the beat forward. The driving chorus is powerful and uplifting, with a catchy melody you cannot help but sing along with.

The calming breakdown contrasts with the energetic chorus, allowing the listener to catch their breath before diving back in.

Overall, “Tell the Truth” is a song that celebrates the journey of self-discovery and the peace that comes with it. With its upbeat feel, catchy melody, and soulful vocals, it’s a song you cannot help but feel good about.

Lisa Hartt opens her world here with her Arrival EP. This recording is a new journey of Lisa’s life, and we will be hearing a lot more from the talented songwriter in years to come.

The second single, “Tell the Truth,” is out now, while Arrival is available in early Spring 2023.

Watch the video for “Tell the Truth” below and learn more about Lisa Hartt via our mini-interview.

Hi Lisa! You’ve been in this space before, so what’s been going on since your last single?

Life has been travelling at such a great speed since the first single, “Don’t Tell Me How I Feel,” was released.

With “this new song, “Tell the Truth,” I am reflecting and celebrating the fact that I am alive and well after 40 years of living clean and sober. I have always wanted to write and sing about the psychic change I experienced after reclaiming my life in the 80s.

To be honest, I never thought it would be possible to have such a varied and interesting life as I have. Creativity, especially music, has always been the lynchpin of my sanity and being able to live “life on life’s terms.”

Sharing a life for 36 years with my beloved partner, Michael Spillane, was an honour and a privilege, and for him to die so young in December this past year was a blow to my normally positive outlook on life. We had so many plans for when I would have not have to be working full time. However, the creativity will save me from descending back into the abyss which I speak about in “Tell The Truth.” Actually, “ the truth will set you free” was Michael’s clarion call, so I am obligated to live well for his sake.

In the meantime, I have been named as an Ambassador to the Drive Foundation, and I am working closely with Sandy Graham of Entertainment Music Group. She is a pioneer in the music industry and has so much experience and knowledge, and we have been brainstorming about how to bring a lot of interesting projects to fruition. My years in the corporate world as well as the music industry, will help me contribute to the new global music experience.

Tell us about the process of writing “Tell the Truth.”

All through the pandemic, when we thought that maybe this was the forever normal, I started to reflect on my life and the possibility that this may be the only way to connect, through homemade music virtually. I had been planning to celebrate my 40th year in sobriety for a long time. For many years, decades actually, it was not possible to share my journey because of the anonymity aspect and the stigma attached to addiction in general. It seemed that now is the perfect time to share my journey and create an EP that talks to the different stages of coming to grips with the addiction and then slowly reclaiming a life.

The lyrics came first, usually after conversations with Michael about life and where we were in the scheme of things, and how it was paramount to be transparent and show the world who we really are, not the social media-filtered person, but the reality. It was through conversations about what was fake news, how people really were doing, all the uncertainty that created this song, a positive outcome from a terrible diagnosis. It takes commitment and hard work, and following directions, worldly and otherworldly. I thought perhaps if one person heard this song and was able to grasp the journey, that it might impact them positively wherever they were on their timeline of recovery.

The music followed, and then I was able to get the acoustic guitar and vocals done, speak with Chris Birkett about my vision for the soundscape, and he went away with these comments and presto in a few days and a few back and forths virtually, he made magic. Being on the same page with your producer about life as well as a musical experience is a serendipitous outcome. It does not always happen. Chris Birkett just understood what I was after and came up with the goods. I love the rolling journeying feeling. It has an expansive feel, and I love that. It speaks to life as a journey, and that is exactly what I was listening for.

“Tell the Truth” is a pretty heavy title. Have you ever been in a situation when it was ok to lie? 😊

This is a pretty philosophical question. It is never okay to lie. Even the little white lies that we tell in order not to hurt someone diminishes them and us in some way. However, it is convenient and time-saving to tell lies, or so we think, then they come back to bite us, or if you are aging like myself, I can’t remember what I said to who and when and why. In the very olden days, I exaggerated a lot, boosting my small story into a large one to the point where it was hurtful to people. I don’t want to get into examples, but I do want to celebrate the fact that it is much easier, lighter, and less stressful to tell the truth, contrary to popular opinion. In the last forty years, I have not found it necessary to lie, nor would I consider myself sober if I did.

What are your plans for the Spring?

The EP Arrival is launching this Spring, and I will be playing and singing to support the new music.

I have a regular radio show now on, “music the way it used to be,” with my show called “Songs From the Heart” every Sunday from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm.

I am an Ambassador for Drive Foundation and hope to be working at events to create fundraising for programming for the foundation.

I will be hosting a celebration of life to highlight the art and music of my life partner Michael Spillane who died in December 2022.

Glad you see you’ve made it past COVID. What did you learn about yourself since then?

COVID was a time of reflection, but honestly, I have never been busier. I learned that I need connection, need to speak and touch and hug human beings, and I need an audience and live music. My Jazz vocal choir, Oasis, tried for a year to use all sorts of technology to sing together over Zoom, but the vibrations of voices in the air were not present. Singing together is a miracle when it is in close proximity. I learned that nature is our greatest ally when in times of loneliness and isolation. I learned that technology all day on screens, morning, noon, and night exhausts me. I need to experience people and listen to their stories and be present with a shoulder to cry on or a hand to hold, or a laugh to ring out suffusing the air with rainbow vibrations. I need live music!

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