Lisa Winn was born and raised in the enchanted land of Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, where her life has been intertwined with the brilliant musicians who happen to exist there in the dozens. "The Hammer" seems to be a breeding ground for true songwriters who, while partaking in each other's lives and music, hold incredible commitment to the development of their craft. The birth of Lisa's career was signified by her heavy involvement in the Hamilton music scene as one of the most coveted backup singers around. She has the ability to blend with anyone's voice perfectly while maintaining her very distinct and powerful sound. She has instant chemistry with whomever she sings with and the aptitude to instinctively follow her partner through a range of moods and dynamics. Some of her backup credits include Gordon Lightfoot, Shannon Lyon, Jacob Moon, Mike Trebilcock (Killjoys), Rob Lamothe, and Jamie Oakes.
The most impressive part of Lisa's career begins with her emergence as a solo artist. Not only as a vocalist, but as a burgeoning songwriter. After tentatively picking up a guitar for the first time she made a brave attempt at bearing her soul through words and melody. The result was a small but beautiful and honest collection of songs. She then co-wrote a handful of songs with producer/songwriter Rob Lamothe, chose covers penned by local musicians Ray Materick and Mike Daley and released in 2000 her stunning debut 'Mother Earth'. This record expresses the true contradiction that is Lisa Winn. There is a lightness that exudes from her being, a beautiful earthy quality, her love of animals and nature visible right from the albums artwork and her enormous capacity to love, which her songs further convey. But then we are exposed to her darkness which digs a little deeper into who she is; it shows us a more private and vulnerable aspect of her being. It's where her passion is fiery and violent and unabashedly honest. It is what reveals her as a true artist.
The release of 'Mother Earth' brought with it a flurry of praise and heightened respect among her musical peers. Lisa began performing her own music for the first time and gradually broke away from her title as 'backup singer'. Taking her album throughout the Canadian festival scene and even all the way to Europe, Lisa found herself sharing the stage with such notable musicians as Holly McNarland, Emm Gryner, Damhnait Doyle, Oh Susanna, John Mann (Spirit of the West), Danny Michel, The Rheostatics, Martina Sorbara, Luke Doucet, David Francey, Tom Wilson (Junkhouse), Jackie Washington, Katherine Wheatley, and Lynn Miles.
Continuing with her solo effort Lisa headed to Hamilton's Grant Avenue Studio to begin recording her sophomore cd, Out From Under. Once again Lisa had her wonderful musical companions embellish on her sparse arrangements. But she wisely chose to keep production to a minimum in order for the listener to be struck by the bare reality of her confessions and the raw emotion of her experience. Out From Under is a personal narrative of the hardships of love and loss. The songs describe a potent and virile time in her life and are seeped in melancholy, but there is also humour, hope and happiness weaved into her moving tales of heartbreak. With her unforgettable 2003 follow up, Lisa has proven herself as an established and confident songwriter willing to tell the hard truth with a breathtaking and unwavering grace.
Lisa is currenly part of a Canadian collective called The Ladybird Sideshow including fellow songwriters Erin Smith, Melissa McClelland and Janine Stoll. The collaboration of talent only helped to solidify Lisa as a songwriter among songwriters and once again showcased her talent as a stellar harmonizer. The Ladybird Sideshow is an in-the-round format featuring each of the girls original material layered with three and four part harmonies. The group released their debut cd "Live at the Orange Lounge" in November of 2004. "Why they would all take time out from their own individual careers to sing together is obvious from the first notes of this album, as the soaring four-part harmonies are heart-melting." says Jason Schneider of Exclaim! magazine. The girls continue to thrill audiences across Canada and the U.S. with their stunning harmonies and witty stage antics.
Lisa is also the backing vocalist for the industrial/rock/pop band Jakalope. When on tour with the band, she shares the stage with the likes of Dave "Rave" Ogilvie (Skinny Puppy, Nine Inch Nails, Marilyn Manson, David Bowie), Phil Caivano (Blitzspeer, Monster Magnet), Sean Stubbs (Tainted Lovers, SNFU), Matt Warhurst (SNFU), super producer/engineer Matt Hyde and the bands front woman Katie B. Lisa's harmony vocals can also be heard all over the bands debut cd "It Dreams."
With any project she involves herself in, Lisa's haunting voice gives us no choice but to feel every single sentiment she delivers right down to our core. What lies ahead is surely another long road lined with new visuals of a stunning musical landscape. Her travels will take her from one rich experience to the next and we, the listener, have the fortunate opportunity to follow alongside her and feel secondhand the power of her abundant emotional life. The ups and downs. The highs and lows. The light and dark. And all the beautiful contradictions that make life worth exploring.
"A dynamic singer whose range and power are only exceeded by her warmth and genuine understated soul."
- Alex Erasmi, View Magazine (Ontario)
"Her charm will envelop you, her voice will captivate you and her music will leave you breathless."
- C.J. Cauley, Shock Value Music Webzine, Ohio
"...the floating, sustaining harmonies of an angel."
- Janine Stoll, indievoice.com, Toronto
"shimmering yet sonically devastating vocals"
- Blair Watson, Action Magazine, Calgary
"Lisa Winn is an honest to god world class singer."
- Mike Trebilcock (Killjoys)
“(Mother Earth is) personal and provocative, showcasing Winn’s striking vocals...an artistic triumph...”
- Alex Erasmi, View Magazine, Hamilton
“Lisa Winn has one of those rare voices that can rip the paint off the wall or melt your heart, all within a heartbeat. This debut album weaves musical magic...”
- James Porteous, Editor, writer and reviewer, The SamTheRecordMan.com Music Newsletter
"...her voice has a rarely felt power and purity...genuinely moving..."
- Philip Wilding, Classic Rock Magazine, UK
"...if you are into genuine, true musicality and heartfelt performances you should definitely get hold of it. (Mother Earth)..."
- Lennart Hedenström, The Northern Light, Sweden
"...beautifully blended vocal harmonies... lovely, honest voice... "
- Jim Kelly, Canadian Musician Magazine
"Somehow Lisa manages to sound like someone you've known all your life. She sounds like a friend. She simply has one of the most compelling voices I have ever heard."
- Eef Vink, Rocknet, Netherlands
"incredibly smooth, emotive vocals...amazing voice..."
- Glen Nott, The Hamilton Spectator
"Lisa Winn has the rare ability to listen while she sings. Her sweet voice and gentle onstage persona add greatly to any musical situation."
- Doug McArthur, Artistic Director - Eaglewood Folk Festival, Pefferlaw, Ontario
"Lisa Winn is fast becoming a Canadian Sensation. She writes deeply personal meditations on life and love. With a voice from heaven that can move or melt and an instantly likeable stage presence, Lisa has become a favourite on the Southern Ontario music scene...literally turning your everyday life into a state of musical grace."
- Jim Marino, 93.3 CFMU -Hamilton, Ontario
Lisa is a much sought-after backing vocalist. She has toured extensively as a back-up singer for various bands and singer/songwriters. She is featured on the following cds, just to name a few:
- Melissa McClelland - Thumbelina's One Night Stand - 2006 (Orange)
- Jacob Moon - Eventide - 2006 (Independent)
- Janine Stoll - This is where we bury it - 2005 (Independent)
- Chris White - ...three am - 2005 (Independent)
- Les Smith - Piece by Piece - 2005 (Independent)
- Fred Magie - Fred Magie - 2005 (Independent)
- Jakalope - It Dreams - 2004 (Orange)
- Lindy - Suspension of Disbelief - 2004 (Orange)
- J.P. Riemens - Blue Martini - 2003 (Independent)
- Ray Materick - Life and Times - 2003 (Linus Entertainment)
- Jamie Oakes - Eloquence - 2002 (Independent)
- Jacob Moon - Landing - 2002 - (Independent)
- Bill Candy - Common Ground - 2002 (Independent)
- Kristine Stone - Feather on the Pavement - 2002 (Independent)
- Bruce Mowat - Almost Listening - 2002 (Independent)
- The Kevin Maclean Band - All the Good Peopl - 2002 (Independent)
- Hot Mustache - Space Lounge - 2002 (Independent)
- Doug McArthur - The Dust of Davy Crockett - 2002 (Tableaux Vivantes)
- Rob Lamothe - Above the Wing is Heaven - 2002 (Southgroove Records)
- Ray Materick - The Songwriter - 2001 (King Kong Records)
- Melissa McClelland - Melissa McClelland - 2001 (Daddy Warbucks Records)
- Rob Lamothe - Wishing Well Motel - 2001 (ADMM Records)
- Rob Lamothe - Steering with My Knee - 2001 (Byrnewood Records)
- Craig Erickson Project - Shine - 2001 (Grooveyard Records)
- Michael J. Birthelmer - The Grand Review - 2001 (Independent)
- Scott Cameron Smith - Poets and Painters - 2001 (Fogarty's Cove Music)
- Mike Trebilcock - Shield Millions - 2000 (Jolleycut Records)
- Mike Daley - Been Here and Gone - 2000 (Independent)
- Jacob Moon - The World I Left Behind - 2000 (Independent)
- Shannon Lyon - Summer Blonde - 2000 (Squaredog)
- Gordon Lightfoot - A Painter Passing Through - 1999 (Reprise Records)
- Rob Lamothe - i am here now - 1999 (ADMM Records)
- Project Hum - Project Hum - 1998 (Independent)
- Rob Lamothe - Being Human - 1998 (Dreamcircle)
- Jacob Moon - Among the Thieves - 1998 (Independent)
- Rob Lamothe - Gravity - 1996 (Dreamcircle)