Laura helped singer/songwriter friend Bill Sanner tell the hilarious and heartwarming story of his years in the US Navy Submarine Corps in this rollicking military memoir. Winner of the 2016 AMG Heritage Award for Best Book.
In this hilarious reverse self-help book, Laura and husband/writing partner Pat Reeder offer valuable life lessons illustrated by hundreds of hilarious stories from their radio service, The Comedy Wire. Foreword by Mike Huckabee.
Laura is a proud member of the Indie Collaborative, an organization of independent artists supporting each other and promoting great indie music in all genres. Click the logo to learn more .
New studio album You Asked For It
released to South Korea May 27
On May 27, 2022, Laura’s fourth studio album You Asked For It was released to the South Korean market via South Korean music distribution giant Music Islandon MP3 and streaming. This is the first album of Laura’s to be released to the South Korean market domestically.
The album will be available on all of South Korea’s major streaming platforms, including Melon, Genie, Bugs, Flo, and Vibe. Music Island spokesperson Ann Jeong-ok described Ainsworth as “a great artist,” and the company believes Laura will help grow the Korean market for traditional American-style vocal jazz.
Coming to Japan and US July 15: You Asked For It +
Laura Ainsworth studio catalog remastered
Laura Ainsworth’s long-awaited fourth studio album You Asked For It will be released in Japan and the US on July 15, 2022. The album is a departure from Laura’s usual fare, featuring well-known songs requested by her fans, and with instrumentation recorded live in the studio instead of multi-tracked. Highlights include Laura’s renditions of “Cry Me A River” and “Over The Rainbow,” as well as an unusual take on the classic Shirley Bassey / James Bond song “Goldfinger.”
You Asked For It was mastered by engineer Jessica Thompson, who is Grammy®-nominated for her work on Errol Garner’s The Complete Concert By The Sea. It will be released to Japan via Ratspack Records on deluxe 12-song mini-LP CD, MP3, and streaming. The CD edition will include liner notes by Laura, full lyrics, a 24 cm x 36 cm poster suitable for framing, and one extra track, “As Time Goes By,” not released on the American edition. You Asked For It will be released as an 11-song edition to the US on MP3 and streaming the same day.
The July 15 Japan and US release of You Asked For It will also be accompanied by the release of remastered editions of Laura's first three studio albums Keep It To Yourself (2011), Necessary Evil (2013), and New Vintage (2017). These remasters were also handled by Jessica Thompson, and bring a vinyl-like warmth to the Laura Ainsworth catalog. The remastered studio albums will be available on MP3 and streaming formats in both countries.
Laura Ainsworth to be distributed to South Korea by Music Island
Laura Ainsworth’s international representative, Swing City Productions, has signed a distribution deal with Music Island for distribution in South Korea. Laura’s full catalog will be remastered for the Korean market, and will spearhead a run of Jazz and Vintage album releases that will debut in South Korea in 2022.
South Korea is the sixth largest and fastest growing music market in the world, and Music Island is at the forefront of Korea’s arrival as the world’s newest entertainment hub. Music Island currently distributes the MPS RECORDS catalog for Korea (Oscar Peterson, Bill Evans, George Shearing, Ella Fitzgerald), so Laura is already in great company.
“Crucial for jazz vocal fans”—Rave reviews for Laura Ainsworth’s Top Shelf CD
Since its September 15 Japanese release, Laura Ainsworth’s Top Shelf CD has collected an impressive set of positive reviews in Japan and in the USA.
Jazz Critique Vol. 224 ran not one, but two positive reviews on Top Shelf, declaring Laura “crucial for jazz vocal fans” and Top Shelf “irresistible for 1920s–1950s retro standard lovers.” Jazz Japan Vol. 134 likewise hailed Laura’s “silky, vibrant voice” that “conveys elegantly the beauty of the standards.”
Other Japanese periodicals that have reviewed Top Shelf positively include CD Journal (one of the top 20 entertainment magazines in Japan) and The Walker’s Vol. 66. Online publications in Japan that have spoken highly of the album include PJ Portrait In Jazz and Music Pen Club. And the lifestyle magazine Hiakara ran two announcement articles for Top Shelf, one in their regular magazine and one in their Hiakara EST insert that is included in the national Japanese newspaper Yomiuri Shimbun.
In the United States, longtime jazz journalist Eric Harabadian (Down Beat) praised Top Shelf‘s packaging and track selection, calling Laura “a brilliant interpreter of song” whose “gossamer phrasing brings a unique personality to each song.”
More details are included in this press release.
Top Shelf expanded CD released to Japan
Laura Ainsworth’s 2017 best-of album Top Shelf has been released on CD September 15, 2021, as a Japanese import with distribution by Ratspack Records. The CD edition features an expanded and revamped track lineup with six extra tracks, including the previously unreleased song “You’d Be Surprised” (an outtake from the Necessary Evil sessions). It also features a warm, vinyl-like remaster courtesy of Grammy-nominated engineer Jessica Thompson, best known for her work on Erroll Garner’sThe Complete Concert by the Sea (2015) reissue. The album is a “mini-LP CD” that looks like a miniature version of the 2017 Top Shelf LP, and includes a 16-page booklet with detailed liner notes. This is an excellent “point of entry” for people new to Laura’s music, as well as an opportunity for longtime fans to hear Laura’s music in a new way.
The CD is available on Laura’s Bandwear site to international (non-Japanese) purchasers.
Also released to Japan September 15—This is Vintage Now Vol. 2: Happiness is a Way of Life featuring Laura’s “An Occasional Man”
Laura Ainsworth’s “An Occasional Man” was chosen as Track One on This is Vintage Now Vol. 2: Happiness is a Way of Life, a compilation of authentic “Vintage Music” recorded between 2007 and 2017 that sounds as if it walked right out of the 1950s-60s. Other featured artists include jazz singer Sue Raney, bossa nova singer Talya Ferro (Walter Wanderley Group), and exotica performer Robert Drasnin.
The album was released as a CD insert in the American tiki magazine Exotica Moderne in May 2021. It was an instant success and received ecstatic praise from both fans and industry professionals. The CD edition is already a collectible and demanding high prices on eBay.
This is Vintage Now Vol. 2 is available on MP3 on Amazon.com and on streaming at Spotify and Apple Music (international outside of Japan). The album is being released to Japan September 15 as a limited edition of 100 CD’s signed and numbered by the producer (available as an import on eBay).
“One of the most loved divas in the retro jazz genre” – Jazz Japan and Jazz Critique interview Laura Ainsworth
Laura has received a flurry of interviews and reviews in Japan with the release of Top Shelf in Japan. These include interviews with Jazz Critique and Jazz Japan, two of Japan’s top jazz magazines. Jazz Japan Vol. 134 refers to Laura as “one of the most loved divas in the retro jazz genre,” and Jazz Critique Vol. 223 compliments Laura’s retro style by telling her, “Thank you for being born in the ‘wrong’ era.”
Read both articles for more insight on the Top Shelf album and also on Laura’s upcoming studio album You Asked For It. (In English and Japanese)
Goa Chillout Zone Vol. 10 featuring Laura’s “The Man I Love Is Gone” charts in iTunes UK and France
On May 2021, “The Man I Love Is Gone,” the only self-written track that Laura has recorded to date, was featured as Track 2 on the compilation album Goa Chillout Zone Vol. 10 released by WOA International. The album promptly charted at #2 in the iTunes UK electronic charts and at #6 in iTunes France’s electronic charts. The album marks a return to the series, as Laura’s “Out of This World” was featured on Goa Chillout Zone Vol. 5 (2013) and the popularity of the track led to a tour of India and Dubai.
Laura Ainsworth LP/CD sales move to Bandwear; new T-shirt designs launched (US)
With the advent of CD Baby shutting down their online CD store, Laura Ainsworth has moved direct sales of her physical albums to Bandwear. All three studio CD’s plus the 180 gram compilation LP Top Shelf are available direct at Laura’s Bandwear Store.
Laura also has two new T-shirt designs available at Bandwear. One features the Top Shelf LP, and the other features the Necessary Evil album. The T-shirts can be purchased by themselves for $30 USD + shipping, or bundled with the full Laura Ainsworth album discography for $75 + shipping, at the links below:
Laura Ainsworth in Japan, spring 2020: interviews and reviews, release of Keep It to Yourself
In late April, Laura’s three studio CD’s received detailed coverage in Jazz Critique and Jazz Japan. Jazz Critique Vol. 215 features a three-page interview; Jazz Japan Vol. 117 features a two-page interview, and reviews all three studio albums in their “Reviews” section.
Also, on April 29, 2020, distributor Ratspack Records released Keep It to Yourself, Laura’s debut CD, to Japanese stores. The release of Keep It to Yourself marks the first time all of Laura’s albums are available for purchase in Japan. The album can be purchased directly from Ratspack Records.
Ratspack Records distributing Laura Ainsworth for Japan
Beginning in 2020, Ratspack Records will be the exclusive distributor of Laura Ainsworth’s albums in Japan. On March 25, they will simultaneously release to Japan the studio CD’s Necessary Evil (2013) and New Vintage (2017), along with the 180g compilation LP Top Shelf (2017). Laura’s debut studio CD Keep It to Yourself (2011) will follow, with a release date of April 22.
Click here for more information in Ratspack Records’ “News” section (in Japanese).
Top Shelf reviews from Japan
In 2019, Laura Ainsworth’s compilation LP Top Shelf was picked up for distribution by Japanese record chain Disk Union. Over the course of the year, the album was reviewed and featured in four major print magazines (Jazz Critique, Jazz Life, Jazz Japan, and The Walker’s), as well as in the online jazz journal PJ Portrait in Jazz. Jazz Critique and Jazz Life are distinguished for having the first and second highest circulations (respectively) of any jazz magazine in Japan. All of the magazines praise Laura’s sound with quotes like these:
“Her singing voice, which is praised as "satin," reminds us of the singers from the 1930s–1940s.” (Jazz Critique)
“Not only the retro artwork, but also her singing voice recalls the atmosphere of the good old times in the 1940s–1950s.” (The Walker’s)
In addition to the above reviews, Laura conducted her first ever Japanese interviews. The interviews were published in the print magazine Jazz Japan, and in the online journal PJ Portrait in Jazz.
The Jazz Japan article refers to Laura as “A Jazz Icon,” (!) and was published alongside an interview with veteran guitar hero Char, who is Japan’s answer to Jeff Beck.
The PJ Portrait in Jazz interview is the more detailed of the two. It takes the reader on a tour of Laura’s discography, discusses her travels to India and work as an actress and songwriter, and reveals her upcoming plans within the Japanese market.
Laura Ainsworth featured at Tokyo's CAFE & BAR ALBERT
Laura Ainsworth’s Top Shelf LP and her latest studio CD New Vintage have received play in the Tokyo jazz café Café & Bar Albert. This particular jazz café specifically plays vocal jazz instead of instrumental jazz. Café & Bar Albert also hosts jazz concerts featuring acclaimed artists such as Pinky Winters.
Venue owner Ruriko Shiozawa stated that most of Café Albert's customers, upon hearing Laura’s music, thought that she was a Japanese singer. The graphic above shows the Top Shelf LP being featured at the Café & Bar Albert, alongside the music of Frank Sinatra and Dinah Shore.
“Where Did The Magic Go” Wins “Best Video” Honors
At the 2019 Artists Music Guild Heritage Awards hosted by Regina Belle, Laura Ainsworth’s “Where Did The Magic Go” was honored as Video of the Year.
This song beautifully summarizes Laura’s mission of bringing the elegance, class and romance of the last century into today. While Tony Bennett's original was a nostalgic look back by someone who lived through that fabulous musical era, Laura’s is from the viewpoint of a younger person who longs to revive it. The video includes many of her idols, including a special tribute to her big band genius dad, Billy Ainsworth, who formed her musical tastes. How many of her icons can you recognize? Watch to the very end for a special surprise!
Laura Ainsworth’s National TV Debut
While in Tennessee, where she was a five-time nominee in the Josie Music Awards, Laura taped an appearance on “Huckabee” on TBN that’s now viewable online. She performed this classic tune from New Vintage with Tre Corley and the Music City Connection.
Three-award sweep of 2018 AMG Heritage Awards
On November 10, 2018, at a ceremony in Monroe, NC, hosted by Thelma Houston and taped for national broadcast, Laura Ainsworth was honored with three Artists Music Guild Heritage Awards out of five nominations.
She received the awards for Album of the Year (New Vintage), Video of the Year ("That's How I Got My Start") and Female Vocalist of the Year. AMG founder and multi-award-winning Christian music artist David L. Cook quipped that it was "the year of Laura Ainsworth!"
Laura wishes to express her deepest thanks to the AMG, a non-profit group dedicated to mentoring indie artists and supporting music education for kids. The AMG Heritage Awards are chosen by industry professionals from samples submitted by nominees, with results based solely on qualify of music, not fame, promo budget or major label affiliation, which makes the awards even more meaningful.
MAJOR MEDIA APPEARANCES
Laura is attracting plenty of attention in recent media. In December 2017, she was featured in the holiday/readers’ poll edition of Downbeat magazine, the Bible of jazz.
In August 2017, celebrity photographer Alan Mercer interviewed Laura for his blog when New Vintage was released.
This revealing and fascinating interview has gone on to become one of his most popular posts.
Numerous podcasts have interviewed Laura and introduced her music as well. Click here to listen to Laura’s interview with the top bachelor pad music show Buddies Lounge, click here for her in-depth interview on the Beyond The Playlist podcast, click here for her recent appearance on Neon Jazz, and click here for her interview with the avatar of cool, Koop Kooper, on the internationally syndicated Cocktail Nation, which named New Vintage as one of the “Best of the Best of 2017”.