Barbara Lusch has a unique and compelling way with a song that goes straight to your heart. Her new recording, "Rock Me Sweet" (Slim Style Records), is a surprising and magnetic reinterpretation of some of the best loved rock anthems of the 80's. Well-known hits of male rock icons such as Bruce Springsteen, Bon Jovi and Bono have been transformed by Barbara into sophisticated, sexy, and soulful songs. You can hear "Dancin' in the Dark" sparkling with seductive style and U2's "Where the Streets Have No Name" becoming a cry of despair that evolves into a statement of triumph.
"I wanted to do these songs my way, and bring out the vulnerability and emotional depth of the lyrics", Barbara explains. She is an interpreter of both jazz and pop, as well as a producer, actress and model with a gorgeous vocal instrument that recalls singers such as Peggy Lee, Rosemary Clooney, Eva Cassidy, Doris Day, Julie London. There is smoke, there is fire, there is honey. "Lusch isn’t one to settle for ordinary; she sings with a deeply sensual vibrancy that gets right to the heart of the matter. One listen and you may feel as if you’ve known Barbara Lusch all your life." (Jim Santella, All About Jazz).
Barbara's major influence was her grandmother, Alice Warren, a member of the Warren Sisters Quartet who performed and recorded during the 20's and 30's. "When Grandma Warren taught me to harmonize, I was hooked. I would practice with her and with my sisters whenever I could," recalls Barbara. "Often we were accompanied by my grandfather playing accordion and my father playing harmonica." Later, this experience would lead her to Los Angeles and New York where she worked as a petite model, appeared in commercials, and acted in television shows such as Coach and The Trials Of Rosie O'Neil. In addition to these pursuits, Barbara also worked in musicals, memorably playing opposite Theodore Bikel in Fiddler On The Roof during its Atlantic City run.
Barbara's solo singing career was preceded by a stint as a vocalist in the popular Portland, Oregon band, Pepe and the Bottle Blondes. The group appeared with the Oregon Symphony Pops, the Britt Festival in Jackson, Oregon, and in venues throughout Oregon as well as in Reno and Seattle. In 2002, Barbara went solo, and since then has been performing throughout the Pacific Northwest with regular engagements in such premier venues as Jimmy Mak's, the Liberty Theater in Astoria, the Heathman and Benson Hotels, and the Allison. She has also appeared at Portland's Cathedral Park Jazz Festival and the Portland Jazz Festival.