Growing up outside of Woodstock, New York, surrounded by her mother, grandmother, and aunt, Lara Hope had a great deal of often unprompted life advice thrown in her direction. To honor the sage wisdom from the maternal influences in her life—which Hope notes has not stopped coming even into her adult years—Lara Hope & The Ark-Tones premiere their latest track “Some Advice,” slated for release May 7.
“‘Some Advice’ isn’t just about making sure you wear your jacket when it’s cold out, and remembering to take your vitamins,” says Hope. “It also touches on the deeper values that the women in my family have instilled in me. It’s about being a good person, and trying to recognize the difference between right and wrong. It’s about standing up for yourself, and for other people who may need your voice to help them. It’s about exercising our rights. It also, more simply, encourages us to sing along, have a good laugh, and celebrate the progress we’ve made as women over the years.”
Wielding on personal experience, Hope carefully crafts her own narratives into a more universally resonant tune. Family anchors much of her work as a songwriter. She says, “I wrote one for my Grandfather a couple of years back, but he’ll never be able to hear it since I wrote it too late. I made sure to write one for my Grandma while she’s still around, and she’s been so appreciative. At age 94, she told me that she drives around listening to our CDs, and will suddenly realize that she’s missed her exit because she’s busy singing along.” “Some Advice” is her mother’s turn to shine.
It only felt right to share the lessons from the source, so Hope invited her mother to contribute to the track. Hope credits her mother’s sense of humor in participating and says, “we even recorded her parts over the phone to give it that real ‘Mom on the phone’ audio quality.”
“Some Advice” is a tip of the hat to the influential talent of the ‘50s & ‘60s like Ruth Brown and Wynonna Carr. The snappy single follows “Let’s Go!” as the second track from their third studio album, Here To Tell The Tale, due out June 25. The two songs, steeped in retro-rockabilly stylings set the tone for the forthcoming record. Behind Hope, rocking her trademark red cat-eye shades, are a lineup of complementary talent including Double bassist Matt “The Knife” Goldpaugh, lead guitarist Eddie Rion, and drummer Jeremy Boniello.
Her goal, always, is to write the song that hasn’t been written. Referencing her third full-length album, she says, “I was trying to look outside that box and relate to people about the other stuff that may be on our minds, whether that be celebrating our accomplishments, fighting with our inner procrastinator, asking for what we believe we deserve, getting (or giving) unsolicited advice, or even running out of hot water in the shower.”
Written over the course of three years, Here To Tell The Tale took on thematic shape without Hope even realizing. As the title suggests, Hope takes pride in the moments that defined her and the chances she took that opened previously inconceivable doors in both her personal and professional life. Throughout 11 tracks, the lyrical content cheers on skeptical onlookers, encouraging full participation in life.
“No more Netflix and chill—let’s get out there and make some memories,” commands the artist. “Although things along the way may not always turn out how we plan, as long as we pick ourselves up and keep moving forward, we will inevitably continue to grow, and have our own unique tales to tell. I’ve learned over the years, mainly through lots of touring and travel, that there are so many different ways of living and finding happiness.”
She continues, “One person’s lifestyle choices may not work for the next person, and that’s okay. However, you get to where you need to go is your choice, but in case you’re feeling lost and need some guidance, ‘Some Advice’ will at least get you going on a path in the right direction.”
Listen to the exclusive premiere of Lara Hope & the Ark-Tones’ new track, “Some Advice,” below.