Many a dream gets lost as life happens especially when someone is doing well in their career. Yet enjoying professional acting, radio and voice over could not erase New-York born Risa Hall’s childhood music dream of writing and performing her own music, in fact they probably reinforced it. Her experience in the industry reflects in her music which is praised for its breadth, its energy and its overall capacity, especially coupled with her Broadway-style vocals, to entertain her audience which include in particular listeners of BBC programes in her new home, Manchester England and around the UK. Risa was kind enough to share with us the making of her brand of BroadManc and the journey that has been leading her to success.
How I got to music…
It all started… I probably knew from the age of 5 when I used to imitate Motown records. It thrilled me to use my voice in a powerful manner.
I don’t think I could do anything else, but I do teach voice in the day at the Arden School of Drama (to me it is an extension of what I do in my music).
A musical icon… Steve Winwood… I have always loved his music and he is so eclectic.
What I like about making music is… Music reaches all the masses and all ages.
But when I started… I was pretty green and missed a huge opportunity because of naivety.
What I listen to…
I pay attention to… both the lyrics and the music.
I listen to Lissie, Nerina Pallot, KT Tunstall, Steve Winwood, Todd Rundgren, Motown, classic rock like the Beatles and Kinks.
I believe the most undervalued music artist is… Nerina Pallot. She should be an international star.
My particular brand…
A unique name for my music would be YankManc music. I am probably the only singer songwriter who is both American and British that I know..
‘Music school’ trained or ‘auto-didact’ and which one is best? Whatever works for you. I am mostly self-taught apart from a few lessons when I was a kid.
When people get excited over my music… It makes me extremely happy to know that my music has reached or touched an individual.
What/who most helped my music career is… I think both David Agnew of the Met and the local BBC stations. I love being affiliated with the BBC and have been played many times.
What ignites my song writing flow… Any inspiration. Family, friends, traumas, love, new experiences.
Introducing the band… We are an eclectic mix of genres who just love to play.
Preparing for performances… Practice when we can all get together and work on the guitar and voice alone when we can’t.
What we do all day? Mostly work!
My other creative avenues… I write plays, draw, tap dance.
So If I wrote a play about my music life, I would share my stories growing up in New York, knowing the Ramones and the New York Dolls, coming to London when I was 17, etc. I Saw the Light in Your Eyes by Todd Rundgren would have to be in the Soundtrack as would It Starts by Nerina Pallot.
Success to you is… Being happy and making others happy.
Any coming projects?
I may be doing a tour of Denmark if the Promoter’s funding comes through. Fingers crossed, I should know very soon.
Thank you again!!!
Good luck with your funding. Thank you Risa for your time and of course for the music! x