Leaping Lulu is known for their inventive dynamics that give the music they play a vibrant, energetic character. It is almost impossible to keep the feet from tapping when listening to their original, genre-bending, arrangements.
The band coalesced in the fall of 2001 when Laura Zisette, Harvey Neuber and Sara Law began playing together. The name of the band was taken from a favorite jig, written by Greg Boardman. Don and Rebecca joined the group in the Spring of 2002. Loralyn and Jill joined in the early part of 2004 after losing Sara and husband Chris to graduate school. They make their music with piano, violin, viola, guitar, mandolin, banjo, concertina, flute, whistle and a variety of drums, spoons, shakers and other rhythm instruments. Leaping Lulu plays regularly for the local Contra Dance series sponsored by the Cache Valley Folk Dancers and the Bridger Folk Music Society. They also play throughout the Cache Valley and at various venues in Utah and Idaho. Their past engagements include the Festival of the American West, Spirit of the West Festival (Ogden), Sundance Film Fesival (Salt Lake City and Park City), Celtic Stew Irish music festival,
Christmas Party for the cast of the Warner Bros. TV series, Everwood, the Lava MeltDown contra dance weekend, the Cache Children's Choir as well as numerous weddings, parties, concerts-in-the-park, and other special events. Leaping Lulu was featured on a one-hour live radio broadcast over KRCL - FM radio of Salt Lake City, has opened for Celtic harpist, Patrick Ball and has even played
dinner music for Eileen Ivers and her band, Immigrant Soul. Leaping Lulu released "The Walk Home" in November 2003 on the Fish Creek label. The recording consists of fifteen tracks containing medleys of reels, jigs and waltzes that are guaranteed to put a smile on your face. Their second recording, "High Road, Low Road" features seven original compositions and arrangements and is scheduled for release this coming July, 2005.
Don - Don Anderson, of Smithfield, plays guitar and mandolin in the band. He brings several decades of musical knowledge and
experience, having played with numerous bands and genres over the years. He is an expert in the flatpick style of guitar with his main influences being Clarence White and Tony Rice. He also plays mandolin and takes the lead on most of the vocal numbers. He has also been know to dabble with other instruments such as the penny whistle and button accordion. In the daytime, Don is a test engineer for HTK corporation, testing the solid rocket motors for the Space Shuttle program.
Harvey - Originally from Ogden, Utah, Harvey Neuber has called Cache Valley home since 1967. Like Don, he also has several years experience playing acoustic music in various local bands. He plays concertina and banjo with Leaping Lulu and occasionally plays the Bodhran Irish drum, mandolin and guitar. Harvey teaches math and science at South Campus High School in Logan. Harvey's chief musical interests are centered around the music of Northern Europe and the British Isles and it's influence on American folk music.
Rebecca - Rebecca Fuller is a classical flutist gone Irish! She is a graduate of Weber State University where she studied flute and music education. She serves as vice president of the Utah Suzuki Flute Association and is their chief organizer of special events. She has a wide range of classical flute training but has recently discovered she also possesses the gene for Irish penny whistle. In addition, Rebecca plays various rhythm instruments such as spoons and various rattles and shakers. She privately instructs a large studio of both flute and whistle students in Wellsville, Utah. Her chief musical interest is "anything whistley".
Loralyn - Loralyn Staples has been playing with Leaping Lulu since January 2004. She received her musical training from the University of Utah where she received her master's degree in violin studies. She has performed in orchestras in Utah, Maine and Kansas where she also taught violin studies at the Bethel College Academy of Music. She is currently concertmaster with the Utah Festival Opera Company orchestra and privately instructs a large studio of violin students. Loralyn's musical tastes range far and wide and playing with Leaping Lulu gives her a chance to exercise many of her diverse musical interests. If coaxed, Loralyn can be persuaded to reveal some of her hidden talents on the kazoo.
Jill - Jill Swenson Hughes grew up in Logan as a member of the musical Swenson family quintet which includes four violinists, one violin-maker, two violists, a cellist, and five pianists. Jill received her BA degree in piano studies from BYU in 2003 and currently stays busy with a large studio of piano students as well as playing with L.L. Her future plans include completing a master's degree in piano studies at Utah State University. She has been playing with Leaping Lulu since the Spring of 2004 and her piano forms the rhythmic and dynamic foundation for the band. She loves playing the music of the British
Isles, especially Scotland.
Visit http://www.leapinglulu.net for a listing of upcoming appearances.