Name: Adam Bernard Home: Fairfield, Connecticut, United States About Me: Entertainment journalist with 15+ years of experience. Supporter of indie music. Lover of day baseball, fringe movies, & chicken shawarma. Part time ninja. Nerdy, but awesome. See my complete profile
I became a fan of the music of Hayley Coupon at the end of 2013. That’s when I saw her during one of my show hopping jaunts in the city, and was absolutely floored by her powerful vocals.
Over the years I’ve written about her a number of times, but after not hearing any new music from her in quite a while I was starting to wonder when I was going to hear her wonderful voice again. That’s when I received an invite to see her at The Standard Hotel East Village as part of the Standard Sounds concert series.
After attending the show, I’m happy to report that not only does Hayley Coupon have new music on the way, she’s somehow become an even better performer.
Here are three reasons why you should see her live.
1. Her voice is truly special
Coupon’s voice has always been powerful – when I first heard her I immediately drew comparisons to Fiona Apple. Over the years, she’s honed her craft in such a way so as to deal that power out in smaller, yet deliberate, doses, expertly balancing it out with softer tones, and, at times, downright smokey tones.
When she opened her set at The Standard she did so with a song that would have felt just as at home in an old school jazz lounge in the 1950s. To be able to have those skills, as well as her songwriting skills, and the ability to turn her voice into a deep, powerful, weapon, is something that makes Coupon one of the city’s must-hear artists.
2. She doesn’t require a lot of frills, or accompaniment
A voice like Coupon’s can fill a room, which is why there isn’t much of a need for a fancy set, or a full band. For some artists those things truly add to the show, but for Coupon, just being accompanied by either her guitarist, or herself on her keyboard, is more than enough to keep all eyes, and ears, on what’s happening on stage.
3. She makes the songs she covers her own
When Coupon told the audience she was going to perform a Steve Winwood song it definitely caused me to go, “Huh?” As she launched into “Can’t Find My Way Home,” however, it became clear that although the song was originally Winwood’s, the version we were hearing was Coupon’s, as she put her own stamp on the classic.
Later in the show, at the behest of her guitarist, she performed another one of Winwood’s songs. How many other 20-something singer-songwriters do you know have a healthy appreciation of Steve Winwood? That alone is pretty unique!
To find out when, and where, Hayley Coupon will be performing next, check out her Facebook page for show dates.