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Arts & Culture

Roxi Copland Transcends Genres with "Truth Be Told"


With her powerfully raw vocals, a light coat of cherry-red lipstick, and dark curls, Jazz/pop musician Roxi Copland joins Bruce Winter in the WUWM@Nite studio, to talk and perform some songs from her new album, "Truth Be Told.” The album, her first record including a full band, features both gritty tracks like Heavy Load and softer, smoother tracks like that of Don’t Give Up On Me. Copland asserts that her music is certainly not contained by any genre.

“Sometimes I sit down to write a tune, and even if I have an idea I think I want it to go in, it takes on a life of its own,” says Copland. “And I don’t think that’s a bad thing.”

Indeed her music, including two EPs and three full length albums, contain elements of jazz, pop, rock, and blues music. Her latest album even holds tracks featuring saxophone and her father, Tom Copland, playing the trumpet.

Copland, who serves as executive producer of “Truth Be Told,” can trace her roots to the Pacific Northwest, having grown up in the small timber town of Aberdeen, Washington. There she started classical piano lessons at the age of 4 and eventually graduated from Grinnell College, a private Iowan liberal arts school. The singer/songwriter/pianist has only recently become a resident of Milwaukee, moving to the city three years ago from Des Moines, Iowa.

“I have met so many world class musicians in this city,” says Copland, “and it has been a privilege to listen to them, meet with them, and learn from them.”

Roxi Copland tickles the ivories during her performance of "I Like the Things You Do" in the WUWM studio.

After a rendition of Heavy Load, Copland takes to her keyboard to play I Like the Things You Do, a particularly powerful ballad combining elements of jazz, pop and soul.   

After a lengthy stint touring Midwest bars, lounges, and breweries, Copland hopes to focus on writing new material this winter, with a new tour starting in the spring of 2015.

“Right now I am mostly regional, I have dabbled along the West Coast and in the South,” she says. “But I imagine in the spring the tour will be larger than simply regional.”