With a big voice, a talent for witty lyrics and the ability to write a damn catchy melody, she is so much more than just a small girl with a big guitar. Her latest EP, 63 Songs About Joe is a pop-rock spectacle that takes a mature leap from her earlier works. Produced by Mike Viola (The Candy Butchers, The Major Labels, Walk Hard, Get Him To The Greek) and engineered by the Ducky Carlisle (Ice Station Zebra, Medford Massachusetts) 63 Songs About Joe draws on such varied influences as The Beatles, Prince, Harry Nilsson and The Beach Boys.
Born in Bethesda, Maryland, Marissa ran away to New York because, well, thatÕs what all good suburban girls do. While studying music at NYU, she taught herself how to play guitar and started writing songs as an outlet for her frustrations that was cheaper than therapy. Armed with a 1963 Favia classical guitar, Marissa hit the West Village open mic scene and honed her thoughtful, emotional and relatable style. In 2002, she recorded her first record, the folksy LookMaNoHands with David Perlick Molinari. Within a few years, Marissa let out her inner rocker, with her more energetic and aggressive second album Charmed & Dangerous, recorded with David Perlick Molinari and Mike Skinner. Filled with sing-along anthems and contagious melodies, Charmed & Dangerous takes audience on the semi-autobiographical ride of 20-something New York wild child and her seductive love affair with the big city Ð having fun, raising hell and stumbling though the potentially dangerous consequences of those actions.
Even with her absorbing, reflective songs, Marissa never lets you forget that performing music is fun and seeing her live is a rare treat. Fanboys, family and followers alike (sheÕs got a biting Twitter feed) alternate between laughing along as she sometimes forgets chords or her own lyrics and falling in love with her deeply personal yet universally relatable stories. Thank goodness therapy in New York is so damn expensive.
“Marissa writes really catchy songs that draw you in with the melody, but keep you with the smart lyrics. Ever since I heard her for the first time, I wanted to hear more.”
- Lisa Loeb [Grammy-nominated Singer/Songwriter]
“Fifteen years ago, I was a clueless adolescent who would only admit to liking obscure hardcore-screamo bands. In secret, however, I was listening to an all-but-lost genre, which I'll call “alternative dream jangle pop.” I'm talking No Doubt, Veruca Salt, Belly...you know, girls with cute voices pretending to be punk and singing about boys. Local singer-songwriter Marissa Levy channels this forgotten genre with a voice that absolutely redefines "cute" and is uncannily reminiscent of Kay Hanley of Letters to Cleo. Take a step back into the mid-nineties, sans teen angst, as Marissa celebrates the release of her new CD, 63 Songs About Joe.
- Melissa Regan [BeaconPass NYC]
“Marissa Lerer is the singer/songwriter you’ve been waiting for. Smart, brassy, authentic and catchy - these songs are ready for the big time.”
- Matthew C. Mills [Emmy-Winning Director/Executive Producer of “MTV Unplugged”]
“At a time when over-the-top vocal gymnastics have become the norm, Marissa comes along with a refreshing change of pace - beautifully crafted pop melodies sung with a beautiful pop voice.”
- Danny Weinkauf [Grammy-Winning musician, worked with TMBG, Fountains of Wayne, and Candy Butchers]
“[63 Songs About Joe is] like pop music for adults in a sandbox”
- Lauren Nagel [Writer, The Owl Mag]
Of Circus Juventas (go), Westerberg, the Joker's chaos ...
Marissa Levy, "Charmed and Dangerous." (Marissa Levy/Crayonbox Records). A smart, spunky songstress with a voice that takes you to that special place where you drink champagne while showering under waterfalls. Many of the tunes are pub and clubland survivor stories, and "Leave the Boy at the Bar" is the kind of flirt-with-'em-and-leave-'em piece of advice fathers everywhere should sneak onto their daughters' playlists.
credit Monday Morning Playback: Jim Walsh
I have heard these songs from their initial stages to their production. I was amazed at the talent before and now I'm just left astounded. This CD takes you through all walks and all stages of life with enough irony to be called profound.
credit: Drew Wilson of Wilson Listenings
This very folky sounding artist starts off this CD with a rocker; strong vocals, nice guitar work and nice lyrics. Good alternative rock or soft rock radio track. "Life After High School" - is the best track on this CD. The following tracks are basically story telling, alternatively written in folk punk-rock type sound. Marissa has a very good potential for some nice air play.
credit The Music Review: CD Music Reviews
Marissa Levy - Look Ma No Hands (self-released)
She isn’t scared to rock out or let her emotions fly free, and that comes through in Marissa Levy’s first album, Look Ma No Hands. With catchy lyrics and melodies, an angelic voice, and an abundance of personality, Marissa adds something new and unique to the folk-pop scene. Where many solo acoustic acts find their comfort zone in trite pop songs, Marissa doesn’t feel the need to stay in that box. Rather, she ventures out with tunes that tell creative stories based around a plethora of interesting characters.
While “Suitcase” and “Don’t You” reflect a deeper, more introspective side, she will have you cracking up in “Life After High School” and “Robert Downey, Jr. (live),” where she claims anorexic mothers won’t cook you a good meal. Her lyrics are like a mixture of Lisa Loeb and Ben Folds, though her musical influences are much more difficult to pin down. The album ranges from the full sound of a 4-piece-band to the mellow sound of the hollow, wooden guitar. Although some of her songs are typical boy-girl songwriter stuff, she balances the album with plenty of unorthodox and imaginative tales. Marissa is a wonderful extrapolation of the high school chick rocker formula, mixing great poetry with a sense of humor and melodious acoustic guitar.
Credit: Corey J. Feldman,: Cityzen.tv