It’s refreshing when an artist lives up to the hype. I always feel relieved for the artist, and selfishly, relieved as a listener that a great single hadn’t gotten my hopes up. Breakout artist Temperance Lancecouncil is a singer-songwriter in Los Angeles, California, who originally hails from the Carolina, Virginia line. She released her single “Bet Not Take My Soul” a couple of month back, and is currently working up some steam to launch its momentum. At first glance you would be thinking of this sultry lady as a sexy R&B singer, or as a swaggering female rapper.
Instead she is a Country-Soul songstress who grew up listening to Dolly Parton, John Denver, Crystal Gayle, The Oak Ridge Boy and many others. Her back story is not one without adversity – she overcame two bouts of life-threatening, double pneumonia as an infant. But that was not to stop her.
Temperance followed her passion which took her through high singing, then majoring in in broadcast journalism, and working in several major, media and music organizations. She also pursued acting, amassing television and movie credits along the way.
“Bet Not Take My Soul” is her debut release, and one that is aimed at reaching her audiences. Temperance is as bold as she is unassuming. Her fierceness comes with a major dose of humility and the richly colored clothing she wears in her photo shoots is the only thing that shines brighter than her smile.
To aptly describe Temperance Lancecouncil’s style of music imagine the raw emotions of Bonnie Raitt getting together with the grittiness of Tina Turner, and the bubbliness of Dolly Parton, in some random piano bar, at midnight, in the middle of nowhere. The song isn’t under the influence of any gimmicks.
There’s nothing that seems to be backed by any kind of marketing ploy, it’s all straight from the heart storytelling. It weaves all the elements together and emphasizes how real Temperance strives to be with her music. She’s brutally honest in a lot of ways, and doesn’t sugarcoat, with the lyrics or the production.
The track basically has the lyrics of a breakup Country song, but the empowering theme, the soulful vocals, and killer abrasive production give it an angsty edge. It’s a perfect record, in establishing Temperance Lancecouncil’s commitment and love for country music.
There are prominent soul elements, but the song is driven by a country instrumental, making it a great example of how well the genres can blend. Upbeat may be something Temperance can do well, but listening to this song, I get the feeling that ballads are her calling.
The simple, but impacting emotional nature of the song is spectacular, as Temperance narrates the idea of a man leaving her, but not allowing for him to take her soul away. It’s a sassy and empowering attitude that all women should have.
She seems to revel in the unflinchingly honest aspects of life and love, and it is where her true sense of self comes to light. Temperance Lancecouncil proves that she’s a woman of integrity finding herself in different ways: through self-empowerment, and, perhaps most notably, defying genre stereotypes and artistic boundaries. You “Bet Not Take My Soul”!