Gear up for the holiday season with the family with Jazz performer Lucy Kalantari’s latest EP, “It’s the Holidays.” Enjoy songs that celebrate every holiday from Halloween to New Year’s Day. Kalantari beautifully mixes jazz and playful lyrics to create a celebration of unity and community in a way everyone can enjoy.
Inspired by the likes of Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, and many more artist from a variety of genres, Kalantari grew up with music and jazz around her. She cites watching cartoons like “Bugs Bunny” and “Tom & Jerry” that had jazz scores in the background while growing up. “[Jazz] is a signature from when I was a child and something I sort of fell in love with.” Kalantari says.
With Kalantari being surrounded with music during her childhood, it is no wonder she went to school for composition and became a musician.
“I like to fill my days with as much music as possible,” she says, and that she does. She hosts weekly bilingual sing-alongs at Lark Café in Brooklyn on Mondays and at Elk Café in Brooklyn on Thursdays. She also incorporates music into everything she does so much; the music bug has bitten even her son. Four-year-old Darius began playing the cello at age 3.
This will come as no surprise, but Kalantari has included Darius in a Song-a-Week project since he was born. She wrote one song a week and tried to involve him in every moment and everything she did. According to Kalantari, Darius perked up whenever he heard her music and smiled when she played her ukulele, thus prompting the creation and release of her first album, “Pockets Full of Joy,“ in 2014. From there it has been nothing but making adults and children alike smile and truly enjoy her music.
Her latest EP is another true work of smiles and joy, but with a holiday twist. With “It’s the Holidays,” she tries to truly incorporate each aspect of the festive season that begins in October. She even includes Thanksgiving in her selection with the song “Grateful,” which happens to be Darius’ favorite tune.
“[Thanksgiving] is such a beautiful time where we sit down and eat together. [We] get to see so many family and friends that [we] haven’t seen in a while.”
With “Grateful,” she wanted to include that feeling of joy and nostalgia. She also includes Darius and some of his classmates telling us what they are grateful for in the song, if you listen closely.
With all the work, composing, and imagination that went into the EP, Kalantari says she is “grateful for everyone who played, who mixed, and who designed.” She is excited to see what was once a thought in her mind come to life in the EP,”It’s the Holidays!,” which is available now.
To buy the EP for yourself, or learn more about upcoming performances, visit lucykalantari.com