Sometimes great things happen when you least expect it.
Singer-songwriter Lisa Humber knows this, as inspiration for her latest single, “The Space Between”, came about just as she and her collaborators were beginning to wind down the recording sessions for her debut EP of the same name.
The song’s lyrics reflect in some ways on her musical journey. The words that came to her speak to the struggle between one’s aspirations and one’s reality, capturing the pressure felt in making all of those tiny decisions that shape and shift who we become.
Humber sings of being at a crossroads: “I’ve been searching all the time/For this fragile heart of mine/To fill in the space between/Your aloofness and my dreams.”
Co-writer, guitarist and producer Justin Abedin crafted an uptempo accompaniment on acoustic guitar and a beat that captures the frenzied feeling of falling “between the cracks”, in the “space between her hell and back.”
It’s the perfect centerpiece to her debut record.
Originally from Sudbury, Humber has worked behind the scenes in the theatre world for 20 years as a stage manager on most of the commercial musicals that have played in Toronto.
It was the sudden, unexpected pandemic cancellation of everything in the arts in 2020 that prompted Humber to finally climb out from behind the scenes and pursue her love of music, working towards releasing the album she’s always envisioned.
“When it felt like everything else had been taken away,” says Lisa, “music and the stories I wanted to share through my own creations was the only thing that made sense.”
She and Abedin, whom she met while working backstage on the musical Come From Away, assembled a group of skilled musicians – Richard Evans and Scott Galloway on piano and keyboards, bassist Drew Birston, Kevin Fox on cello, and Lyle Molzan and Davide Di Renzo on drums – and hit Toronto’s Toast + Jam Studios to lay down tracks.
The result is a collection of eight moving and personal songs, all written by Humber and Abedin, that run the gamut from indie pop to adult alternative. They include the hopeful melancholy of “Not Worth Losing”, the doomed relationship of “Lucky 13”, and the frustration of watching someone pretend to be someone else in “Skin”.
Together, the collection highlights life in the space between the good, the bad and the messy.
Though it was the last song written by Lisa and Justin, “The Space Between” deftly ties it all together, documenting as it does Humber’s discovery of the blue sky behind the dark clouds. It just had to end up being the title song of the EP.
“I really hope ‘The Space Between’ inspires others to move towards the blue skies version of their lives,” Lisa adds.
“The Space Between” single and EP is out now on all streaming services.