Five points: Laura Fox
Guilty associations: I play solo and with my duo Fox + Roy (with Whitney Roy from OldHat Stringband)
Favorite spot on the coast: It’s so difficult. I grew up in the Seacoast so I have 33 years of living and visiting this place. Right now it’s the stretch along the York River from Wiggly Bridge to Harbor Beach, my neighborhood walk.
Average sleep time: 8 hours.
Favorite color: Blue / green.
Here we are:
EDGE: Music. What’s the point? Why are you looking for it? Why create it?
Fox: Music is a universal good. I think with every feeling or experience you have – there is music that will help make it better or alleviate it in any way you need to.
Music has always been a security for me. When I was little my mother sang to me to sleep and I often sang with her. As I got older, I sang to myself when I felt overwhelmed or scared, excited or happy. It became a form of therapy for me, almost like a place I could go where I would always feel held and safe to express myself fully. I feel honest and connected when I sing, and I’m pretty much always looking for that feeling in life.
I feel more like myself when I sing than with anything I have ever tried. It roots me and lifts me up at the same time. Writing songs and performing just allowed me to take that feeling to the next level and connect with others. I feel most alive when I’m on stage.
EDGE: How have things changed for you (musically) since the whole pandemic started? How has your musical exploration changed over the past year and how has it changed? Interesting takeaways? Heck, how did your outlook on life in general change from this experience (if any)?
Fox: Dude, that’s a weighted question. In January 2020, I played The Press Room for my second gig with my whole band. I was looking at 2020 as if this was finally going to be a time where I could develop my music and collaborate with other musicians in a way that I had only experienced fleetingly. It was a dream of mine to lead a full band, playing my original songs. Unfortunately, we played two concerts together and then the world stopped.
I wish I could say that 2020 has been a year full of creativity and that I have finally learned to play solo guitar and new songs are coming out of me every day. But it is so far from true. Honestly, for most of 2020, I barely sang or even picked up my guitar. Fortunately, I had some life changes in a positive direction at the end of the year that turned things around and allowed me to slowly turn to music creation.
EDGE: Community. What does this word mean to you? What do you like about the community you are a part of in this part of the world?
Fox: Community = connection. I think connecting with others is the most important thing we have as human beings. It might be the extrovert in me, but I’m always looking for ways to cultivate a deep connection and develop relationships in my life. If this year has taught me anything, it’s that living fully is living in community with others: sharing, connecting, helping, growing. While the past year has made things harder to do, it has also made it even clearer that this is the reason for life. What is the point of getting up in the morning if we are not in contact with other people? Of course, there are other important aspects in life, but if we don’t cultivate deep relationships with people, I think we are missing the mark.
EDGE: When you’re not playing music, what do you do? What does a typical “day in the life” look like for Laura Fox?
Fox: I don’t really have a typical day, but most days are about talking to the people I love, cooking great food, going for a walk, taking a yoga class, and hopefully. to laugh. I grew vegetables this summer which fascinates me enormously. I made plans for the next live shows to see (finally!), And spend some time on the shore or in the water. For the past 3+ years I have worked from home as a freelance marketing strategist so work life hasn’t changed too much for me which I am truly grateful for. I mainly work with small businesses in the Seacoast area, which I really like. So on the days that I am working I look at a laptop, but it’s important for me to find some balance every day, and being your own boss allows that. It’s okay with me.
EDGE: Now that things are opening up again and concerts are more and more a part of our existence (THANKS), what have you got to come? What motivates you to appear in front of an audience? On the other hand, are there any mental obstacles to overcome?
Fox: My first comeback gig is at Vernon Family Farm in Newfields, this Friday July 23, with my duo Fox + Roy. Vernon Family Farm is also a marketing client of mine, and I adore owners Nicole and Jeremiah, so I’m super excited to have my return to live music outside at their lovely family farm. Singing with Whitney is one of my favorite things to do; hearing his harmonies on my originals particularly fills me, so I’m so happy to have this in my life again. I will also be performing more outdoor shows at Kittery Community Center, Dixon’s Campground and Arrowheads Estate in the coming weeks.
I go back and forth between feeling elated and terrified at the thought of singing for strangers again. I learned new covers and had to relearn a lot of songs that I had forgotten (including my own original songs). But really, I feel more alive on stage singing than anywhere else, so I’m dying to go back. At the same time, there is certainly a level of “Wait, how can I play guitar again?” What is the first line of the second verse? I had come to a place where it was rare enough for me to feel the jitters, but I really anticipate that I will feel it again. Fortunately, the physical act of singing calms me down, so once I start it’s only from there. I couldn’t be happier to play again.