Solo artist Cornelia Murr started her musical career comfortably collaborating in projects, but now she’s gained the confidence to step out on her own and we’re so glad she did.
“It feels right,” Murr tells BTRtoday about going solo. “It feels comfortable to walk the earth now with a little bit more of my personality out there—as oppose to hiding and pretending I don’t have any of this in me, which is what I did for a long time.”
Murr released her debut solo album Lake Tear of the Clouds just last month and it’s oozing with passion and emotion. “Eventually, it just felt like I had to [go solo], it feels good,” Murr says. “It also feels like a sliver of what I want to say… it’s just the beginning, I’ve got a lot more feelings to come.”
Cornelia Murr, “Man On My Mind”
In Lake Tear of the Clouds Murr keeps her vocals sultry and comforting, yet stern in self-expression. She sings softly over melodies as melodic and hypnotizing as the ocean’s current. Murr says she had specific visions for each song and did not want to stray from that idea, so the production process took some time. However, after connecting with Jim James of My Morning Jacket she found the perfect producer. “He turned out to be just the right brain to work with on this,” she says.
Romantic tracks like “Man On My Mind” and “You Got Me” are mellow and smooth with relatable lyrics that could tug at anyone’s heartstrings. In other tracks, like “Cicada” and “Tokyo Kyoto” you can hear the environmental influences with many references to her surroundings and samples of nature sounds.
The album title came from the environment that has influenced her the most. Though she has moved around a lot during her life, she has spent a good portion of her time in NY, the city and the rest of the state. Having family in the Hudson Valley region of NY state, that area is the closest place she has to a home. “The Hudson river is my river in my lifetime, I’ve put in a lot of time around it,” Murr says. “Lake Tear of the Clouds happens to be the highest source of the Hudson River, which I never know before—it’s just a strangely flamboyantly poetic name for a lake.”
Though Lake Tear of the Clouds is her solo debut, she’s been writing her own songs since she was little. Her earliest memory of songwriting was an angsty number she wrote around six years old about a woman on death row and a prison guard falling in love. “[It was a] really dramatic song that was not about my real life, it was some vision I had about a romance,” she says. “It was really dramatic and sad, but I guess maybe I write more about my own life these days.”
Murr is preparing to play several of her biggest shows as a solo artist opening for indie rockers Lucius in mid-September. Though she’s played many solo sets this will be her biggest show without a backing band to support her. “It’s a new challenge,” she says.
However, before these bigger shows Murr will be playing her first round of completely solo sets at a sold-out show at Brooklyn’s Union Pool on August 21. In the meantime, tune in to this week’s The Music Meetup to hear the rest of the interview with Cornelia Murr and her debut solo album in its entirety.