A case of the winter flu apparently has derailed a show scheduled for Friday night by Americana music rising star Lydia Loveless.
She was scheduled to play the Hampton Taphouse in what would have been her Hampton Roads debut.
"Praying I can hang onto my voice," she Tweeted before her show Tuesday in Massachusetts. Afterwards, she continued, "Wish I would have handled my loss of voice this evening better. Very sorry everyone and hope to be back in better shape."
Her website now shows that concerts in Philadelphia, Washington, D.C. and Harrisburg, Pa., as well as Hampton have been canceled.
Here's the story that I had written about Loveless that would have run in the Daily Press had the show not been canned.
Headline: Country-punk starlet Lydia Loveless ready to rock Hampton
By Sam McDonald
Lydia Loveless is just 22 years old, but you wouldn’t dare describe her as naive.
A firecracker of a singer whose voice sounds like a mix of Neko Case and Loretta Lynn, she’s already toured Europe, released two albums of original songs and been written up in some of America’s biggest newspapers and music magazines. If you believe the lyrics to her hard-hitting country-punk tunes, you’d assume she’s also battled heartbreak and substance abuse.
“’Cause my daddy was a preacher but he was a junkie, too,” she sings on “Do Right,” from her 2011 album “Indestructible Machine.” “I grew up on whiskey and God, so I’m a little bit confused.”
Does Loveless ever worry that she’s revealing too much in her songs?
“Not really,” the Ohio-based performer said in a telephone interview with the Daily Press. “The more honest you are, the more universal your songs are, as opposed to trying to make stuff up about the common man, or something.
“The more embarrassing my lyrics are the more people can relate to them. Sometimes I feel like, ‘Man, I’m probably going to make somebody mad or hurt somebody’s feelings.’ But that’s just part of life.”
Loveless and her band will perform Friday, Dec. 7, at the Hampton Taphouse. For her Hampton Roads debut, she’ll be playing tunes such as “Bad Way to Go,” “Can’t Change Me” and “Learn to Say No” which includes the refrain “Someday I’ll learn what it’s like to say no, but I just ain’t ready for what it feels like to say no.”
Despite all the blunt expressions of pain, anger and defiance in her tunes, life has been pretty good for Loveless recently.
“Indestructible Machine” ended up on several major best-of lists at the end of last year. Loveless was invited to guest on the nationally syndicated radio show “Sound Opinions,” hosted by veteran rock critics Greg Kot and Jim DeRogatis. As a duo with her upright-bass-playing husband, she made a swing trough Europe earlier this year.
Back in September, she was asked to headline a party celebrating the 18th anniversary of her label, Bloodshot Records.
“That was really awesome,” Loveless said. “I went from being the new kid on the label to actually headlining the show, which was really cool. I don’t know how I ended up playing after Jon Langford, but that’s pretty exciting.”
Of course, all that puts more pressure on Loveless to deliver an album even bigger and better than “Indestructible Machine.” She’s rented rehearsal space this month where she’ll work to construct new material.
“It’s just literally a room with nothing in it to distract me,” she said, laughing. “So, that’s what I’ll be doing when I get home — losing my mind, yelling at myself. After that, probably in January, I’ll be doing the actual recording.”
She admits that the pressure has, at times, gotten to her.
“I got pretty pessimistic about the whole thing awhile ago,” she said. “I was like, ‘I never have any time to do anything! How am I going to put out an album?’ Then I was like, ‘Everyone else does it. So just man up, gal, and write the damn album.’ ”
While the Taphouse show will be her first in the region, she has previously performed in Roanoke. Loveless said she enjoys touring in the South.
“It really depends on where you go,” she said. “Being from Ohio, some people are like, ‘Why do you think you can play country?’ But I’m really from a very rural area, so I feel definitely connected to country music. I’ve had good reactions from the South and I’ve had weird reactions. But I definitely like touring there ... It’s different from anywhere else. People are a lot more real there.”
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