The Maine Public Broadcasting Network
Maine Public Radio
Maine Public Classical
Visible By Administrators Only
Brunswick Singer-Songwriter's Debut Album Wins Critical Praise
04/05/2013   Reported By: Tom Porter

Lady Lamb The Beekeeper is the stage name of Aly Spaltro, a 23-year old songwriter and musician who left her home town of Brunswick, Maine, two years ago for New York City. As Tom Porter reports, Spaltro is already winning critical acclaim for her debut album, "Ripely Pine. "

Related Media
Hear "Aubergine"
Originally Aired: 4/5/2013 5:30 PM
Hear "Bird Balloons"
Originally Aired: 4/5/2013 5:30 PM
Hear more from Lady Lamb The Beekeeper
Originally Aired: 4/5/2013 5:30 PM
Brunswick Singer-Songwriter's Debut Album Wins Cri Listen

Spaltro says the name "Lady Lamb The Beekeeper" came to her in a dream - as do many of her ideas. At the time, Spaltro says, she was keeping a note book by her bed, ready to be inspired.

"So I was sort of writing lyrics in my sleep and training myself to kind of roll over in my sleep and write lyrics in a notebook in the dark, so that I could fall back to sleep," she says. "And I was also at the same time trying my hand at lucid dreaming, so somewhere I think the wires got crossed and I was just writing strange things in a sort of half-awake state, and it was written in my note book when I woke up one morning."

"There are a couple of songs on my new album that were directly inspired by dreams I had," she says. "There's a song called 'Little Brother' that was taken almost entirely from a dream I had about saving my little brother from animals and storms and things like that. So I find that I do wake up and really remember a lot, and it finds its way into my material."

The album, Ripely Pine, has garnered national attention since its release in February. Time magazine says Ripely Pine "explodes into a constellation of emotions: joy, desire, regret, sadness, anger: the experience of being a twenty-something in 2013."

Lady Lamb the BeekeeperAlthough now living in New York City, Spaltro's artistic roots are firmly in Maine. She has a tattoo of the Pine Tree State on her shoulder and hopes to move back one day, Her formative years as a musical artist were in Brunswick, where after graduating from high school she worked the late shift behind the counter at Bart and Greg's DVD rental store.

She would often stay behind during the after hours, playing guitar, writing songs and recording until dawn. One song above all she associates with those days is "Bird Balloons."

"It was one of the first, if not the first, song that I ever really wrote down in the basement of the video store late at night, where I really felt the most free creatively," she says. "That was sort of my first experimentation with turning up my guitar amp really loudly, and really projecting my voice and using my instruments in that emotional of a way. So that song has been with me for years."

Aly Spaltro acquired a stage name because, she says, she needed the anonymity. In the early years, she wanted to try out her home recordings on an unsupecting audience, but didn't wish to be identified. So what better way to do that, than to give away CDs for free, under an assumed name, at the independent record store next door?

"I wanted a way to share the songs at the record store counter without the material being traced back to me next door," she says.

Tom Porter: "Is that because you were shy?"

Aly Spaltro: "Yeah, because I was just really nervous. I mean, I really couldn't be objective and hear my songs with critical ears, so I wasn't sure how it would be received and I wanted to sort of like, share it, but not let everyone know that it was the girl next door working at the counter."

Aly Spaltro is now a long way from being "the girl next door." With a successful debut album behind her, she's about to embark on a European tour.




Become a Fan of the NEW MPBNNews Facebook page. Get news, updates and unique content to share and discuss:

Recommended by our audience on Facebook:
Copyright © 2016 Maine Public Broadcasting Network. All rights reserved.