We’ve all heard a one-man band, but Lawrence “Lipbone” Redding takes it to another level by adding a mix of beatboxing, self-contained percussion and vocal horns, elevating him into a one-man orchestra.
Originally from North Carolina, Redding was raised by his grandmother, Beatrice, who was an artist and the driving force behind his musical beginnings. “My grandmother pushed me to channel my energy into something positive like music. She knew I had a creative spirit and helped me turn that into a passion that has continued to serve me therapeutically,” Redding said.
Redding used this passion to learn to play the piano, violin, clarinet and eventually the guitar. In high school, Redding said his life hit a turning point when his choir teacher, Ms. Ipock, encouraged him to put down his class-clown persona and take advantage of the voice and talent he possessed. “She molded me into a real singer and made me realize that I really had what it takes to go into music as a career,” he said.
In his early 20s, with a guitar and a dream, Redding headed for the bright lights of New York City to pursue his music. After playing at various clubs and bars and working as a producer for the Museum of Magnetic Sound Recording, Redding began performing in the subway where he found himself inspired by the many other talented and unique artists in his company. “Hearing all of those talented musicians playing so many instruments inspired me. I just started practicing replicating those sounds as I played, and it kind of compensated for my shortcomings. Eventually, I got good enough that it allowed me to have a style that stepped out of the box and became my signature,” he said.
Redding’s music combines elements from jazz and blues, mixing creative instruments like a wooden spoon taped to the bottom of his shoe with traditional ones like the guitar, along with vocal beatboxing and sounds of the trombone (the reason his nickname became Lipbone), trumpet, saxophone and more.
His sound is as unique as his soulful voice, both of which will draw you in and leave you wanting more.
As a songwriter, Redding said he likes to look at the world through a positive lens with an “attitude of gratitude,” making his music upbeat and fun. “I love to travel the world and immerse myself into new cultures. There’s so much we can learn by being open-minded, and I like to incorporate that into my music,” he said.
Redding has spent the last decade touring all over the world as a solo act and as part of a trio making a name for himself throughout Europe, India, South America and more. Montgomery has been a stop on his world tour several times and he intends on returning in the future. “I love playing in places like Montgomery. People in the South have a knack for music, and I feel like I can connect with my own Southern roots there. It’s like coming home for me,” he said.
Redding said he enjoys taking part in the growing new movement of “house concerts” and private parties more often than not these days. “It’s been a growing trend that people hire me for house concerts where they invite their friends into a private setting. Everyone eats, drinks and talks, then I get up and perform and it’s all eyes on me. The guests really pay attention and listen to the words of my music. I get to tell stories about the songs and answer questions. It’s a very intimate way to perform and really makes an artist feel appreciated,” he said. And while he still enjoys playing in theaters and club-style venues, Redding said the private settings seem to really allow the audience to connect with his music on a deeper level.
In the coming weeks, Redding will be featured in Aspen, Denver and the Pacific Northwest before he heads off for a tour in Spain and Morocco. Redding said, “I go armed with a backpack and my guitar, and that’s all I really need. I have a gypsy soul and being able to roam the world while doing what I love and sharing music with people is a gift I have been given that I am so thankful for.”
To learn more about Lipbone Redding or his music, visit www.lipbone.com.