Laura Zucker hit the ground running 10 years ago when she started a second career as a songwriter. But after producing four CDs, and winning too many song awards to list here (www.LauraZucker.com), Laura came up against some challenging realities about women in the music business. She was stymied and started getting sour about it. “It was feeling hard and sucking the joy out of me,” says Zucker. And then the election happened, and, well, what’s a girl to do?
When a friend said, ‘Go where the Yes’s are,’ Laura took that advice and made it her new mantra. It also became the name of her latest CD, Say Yes. You might think Laura went about writing 11 upbeat, feel-good songs for her CD. But that’s not what she did. Instead, she wrote about life, and healing, and looking past the pain to find the good – or just the salvageable – in ourselves and others. Says Laura, “ I have something to learn from every person or challenge.”
From her cut, “Sea Glass,” she sings, “I’ll be somebody’s treasure after the storm.” And if you’ve ever found sea glass by the ocean, picked it up and marveled at how smooth the edges of what was a rough stone have become over time, you’ll begin to understand the magic of Laura’s story telling. It’s honest, yet poetic, and it’s all hung on extremely solid song structures that invite repeat listening. In “The Boat,” she sings, “This boat is steady, when you’re ready, grab an oar.” Life may not be easy, but we have power and control if we choose to take action. The title song, “Say Yes,” has already garnered Laura the West Coast Songwriters Association Best Song of the Year and a first place “Gold Award from the Mid-Atlantic Song Contest. Since she hasn’t even had her CD release party, that’s a pretty darn good kick off!
Laura also said Yes to something else that was new – working with producer/sound engineer Ed Tree in Los Angeles. Says Ed, “Laura is such a great songwriter. Her craftsmanship is top notch.” When asked what it took to produce Laura’s CD, Ed says, “First, everything needs to honor the singer and the song. And when you've got great songs, and put them together with the unbelievably great musicians we have here in Los Angeles, it was easy to do.”
Laura is an advocate for the creative side in each of us. “You have to honor yourself as a creative being. Give yourself permission to be creative whenever and wherever.” As for her own creative process, she carries a book with her and dictates into her phone when she’s walking her dog. Laura’s always open to the ideas that come. “I write a little every day. I think about writing every day. I approach everything I do with a writer’s eye. I’m an idea squirrel. I tuck them away and they brew. It’s a different mindset going out into the world.”
Admittedly, Laura has reached a new high with her latest CD Say Yes. As you listen to it, you just might hear a story you think Laura wrote just for you. And that may be the best compliment any songwriter can ever have.