Little Warrior showcases jazz vocalist Lisa Engelken's uncanny emotional depth and technical fluency. Lisa wields an acrobatic three-octave range, as she draws upon both the beauty and brutality of the human experience to explore and embrace her angels & demons.
From cacophonous to stripped down and naked, harmonic consonance and dissonance interweave, swirl and wrestle for position as her voice cuts raw, soars powerful, or simply floats pristine.
Influenced by a wide variety of musical genres, Engelken refers to her works as “musical mutts.” The singer-composer-arranger sets herself apart by following a seemingly visceral need to convey a song’s story not only through lyric, but through vocal attack, harmony and instrumentation.
"She is an utter original. Blessed with superlative power, control and range,
Engelken can, as mood requires, be as soft as dew or as intense as a sleet storm;
her interpretive instincts are astounding." - Christopher Loudon, JazzTimes
Little Warrior is Engelken’s follow-up to Caravan, named to the Best of 2010 List by the Jazz Journalists Association and includes “From the Earth, Lisa’s exciting lyric version of Freddie Hubbard’s “Red Clay.”
Where Caravan could be described as “mainstream with a twist,” Little Warrior marks a natural evolution of her artistic style that ventures into more complex thematic and harmonic territories. Engelken continues to push the boundaries of the jazz vocal canon, making an edgier, more personal statement that includes four original works.
Little Warrior also features “Undertow,” Lisa’s haunting new lyric version of Wayne Shorter’s “Nefertiti” and includes bold new adaptations of works by Abbey Lincoln, The Cars, Tom Waits, Joni Mitchell and an unabashedly joyous samba in Italian.