No Song is Safe From Us

No Song Is Safe From Us - The NYFOS Blog
 |  Rebecca Jo Loeb

The last couple of months I spent a significant amount of time in South America, and the majority in Chile. Unsurprisingly, the legacy of the dictatorship is still very present in the politics and culture of the country, and specifically on the streets of Santiago where during the wintertime students and other activists take to the streets.




 |  Rebecca Jo Loeb

This is a song called “Seriously” written by Sara Bareilles and performed by Leslie Odom Jr. It’s supposed to be an imagining of what then president Barack Obama might have been thinking during the 2016 election but was not at liberty to say.




 |  Rebecca Jo Loeb

For my first song I’d love you to listen to “Abortion Is Illegal by Hanns Eisler/Brecht. For me it is shocking that this was written in the 1930s, not because it was necessarily so ahead of its time, but because it could have been written today as well.




 |  nyfos

Artist of the Month rings in 2018 with mezzo-soprano Rebecca Jo Loeb. Hailed as “a theatrical performer whose rise to watch” (Opera News), Ms. Loeb is based in Germany and sings throughout Europe and in the US. She recently made a “notable Met debut” (New York Times) as Flora in La Traviata at the Metropoitan Opera. A NYFOS Emerging Artist program alum, who has performed in our Mainstage and gala evenings, Ms. Loeb will return to NYFOS at the end of the month in our tour programs celebrating Leonard Bernstein.




 |  Rebecca Jo Loeb

In my search I did happen to find one song which very few people know (a YouTube search garners only a few results, for example) but I find it to be absolutely gorgeous, captivating, and original. The song is “An Emma” and it’s a beautiful example of how even a short song can take you on a journey, explore a dizzying array of ideas and thoughts, and leave you both satisfied and wanting more.




 |  Rebecca Jo Loeb

It affected me on some sort of primal level (as music often does). But now that I’ve lived a bit longer, been very close to death, wondered about life and existence in a way that one only can when one sees the light die from someone’s eyes… well, now I think the song is just damn incredible.




 |  Rebecca Jo Loeb

“L’indifferent” is argubly the least well known of Ravel’s three songs that make up his masterpiece Sheherezade. Even so, it garners a good deal of speculation as to the nature of the poem and seems both musically and poetically shrowded in mystery.




 |  Rebecca Jo Loeb

This song has long been a favorite of mine. It comes from a made for TV film called Evening Primrose which is in no way Stephen Sondheim’s finest, but this song is a gem. For me, it was an incredibly important song in my development as a singer because it taught me how to develop the arc of a song.




 |  Rebecca Jo Loeb

I’ve been a fan of Amanda Palmer’s deep androgynous voice for a while, but it’s her fearlessness as an artist, entrepreneur, and musician that I think truly sets her apart from the rest of the bunch. In “Sing” she calls upon everyone to communicate in a way “that’s like touching except you don’t touch” and like “talking except you don’t talk. You sing.”