Publication: Woman Around Town
Date: September 2, 2019
Ute Lemper moves like a dancer. As she gracefully folds herself into a chair, one can almost see attention and intellect snap to order. The multifaceted artist was raised in Munster, Germany, by music-loving parents. She successively took dance, voice, and briefly, piano lessons. “I can only find my emotions reflected in this universe called music.”
Like many teenagers, Lemper turned up the volume on her record player and sang along. Her choices featured Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald, Barbra Streisand, Stevie Wonder, and Joni Mitchell. Apartment neighbors pounded in objection. Lemper, an admitted libertine, looks mischievous when she tells me this. “No German vocalists?” I ask. “There was a cultural vacuum in the 60s and 70s. Music was superficial, easy listening.” The burgeoning performer also fronted several jazz/rock bands.
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