I first heard singer/songwriter Lara Herscovitch last spring. A rainy weekend had driven the Brown University Folk Festival inside. Only a handful of people turned out.
Herscovitch, who is from Connecticut and was once the state’s official troubadour, has a luminous voice and a buoyant stage presence. On her new album, “Highway Philosophers,” melodies burble and big-hearted lyrics embrace the sum of life, sour to sweet. Stephen Murphy’s electric guitar and Craig Akin’s upright bass provide a foundation for the chapel Herscovitch builds with her words, voice and acoustic guitar.
Herscovitch started writing the album in 2017, when she ditched her day job in social justice to make music full time. Many tracks reflect that leap of faith, from weathering anxiety in “Fault Lines” to exuberance in “Shine Sister Shine.” That one starts, “She said she used to love the way they all rely on her/ But lately feels more obligation than she prefers,” and breaks into a boppy refrain about the joy of following your heart.
Herscovitch’s music blows on the embers of a lagging spirit or a dormant creative life. She’ll be livestreaming a concert April 24 at 7 p.m. via www.facebook.com/LaraHerscovitchMusic at 7 p.m. on April 24. Watch and be warmed.