(with permission from Iowa Source Magazine)
(Listen to playlist below).
Twenty-four-year-old Ari Staprans Leff (a.k.a. Lauv) came splashing onto the music scene in early 2018 with his first CD, I met you when I was 18. Although born in the U.S., Lauv’s heritage is a mix of Latvian, Russian, and Polish. His stage name means “lion” in Latvian. With a degree in music technology from New York University, Lauv confidently plays any mix of overlaid tracks on his guitar, piano, synthesizer, viola, and drums. He weaves acoustic and electronic elements masterfully into romantic songs that hover somewhere between mid-tempo pop and rhythm & blues.
The 17-track CD provides ample evidence of his brilliant talents as a composer and vocalist. Its songs are smoothly produced with bright, melodic themes in mostly major keys and epic, haunting choruses. Whether his lyrics speak of breakups, make-ups, or simply reverent adoration, Lauv successfully casts his spell on the listener.
Here are my recommended tracks from the new CD, as well as earlier works:
“Comfortable” (2018). Lauv “walks on eggshells” in a relationship where the lady wants to know if he’s thinking of leaving.“The Other” (2015). On this track from his first six-song EP, Lauv reveals his penchant for smooth production and a knack for hooking audiences with a charming chorus.“A Different Way” (2018 with DJ Snake). The Indian rap segments play well with the next track back-to-back.“I Like Me Better” (2017). This song reflects on his move to New York at age 18. The Indian-influenced instrumental backdrop moves in and out of this pleasant affirmation that “I like me better when I’m with you.”
Lift your day with a dose of Lauv!
So, you don't get diverted away from the playlist on Spotify, follow these simple instructions before you click on the pop-up:
(1) To engage the Spotify pop-up, you will need to click the "play" arrow that triggers 30-second samples of each track.
(2) Notice the green Spotify pop-up that invites you to hear full tracks by clicking on the message.
(3) Before you click on the Spotify message, pause the playback of 30-second samples. Then, when you click on the green Spotify message, you will land on the full playlist on Spotify.