Parents’ Choice: Do you remember hearing the original song as a child? If so, what did it mean to you?
Lisa: “I remember listening to Marlo Thomas’s “Free to Be You and Me” album with my friend Margaret in the mid-1970s on our turntable and really being engaged by the piano ballad sung by Rosie Grier. It did mean a lot at the time hearing someone singing about how it’s okay for someone to cry, and I think in this case, it was really about a little boy crying. It was one of the seeds that grew in me — a message about how everyone’s feelings are important and how you need to let them out. “Free To Be You and Me” inspired so many of my songs and my motivation to spread positive messages in my songs. Even now, when I hear those opening chords and Rosie Grier’s warm voice come in, it feels so warm and inviting and safe.”
Parents’ Choice: What made you think to record this song now?
Lisa: “I was in the middle of writing and recording Feel What U Feel with so many wonderful collaborators. Rich Jacques, Kyler England and I starting writing the disco funk jam, “Feel What U Feel,” which became the title track for the album. I’d wanted to record a song with Craig Robinson for a long time and this funny, silly, but warm and engaging disco funk jam seemed like a duet waiting to happen. Then, as I listened to the track, I realized it almost sounded like it needed a partner, and it popped into my head that not only am I inspired by “Free To Be You and Me,” but we should re-record the song “it’s All Right to Cry” as a duet with Craig. He has a similar warm, expressive tone and the ability to tell a story through his voice, like Rosie Grier. I realized this song was the perfect companion piece to the upbeat “Feel What U Feel.”
People still need that reminder to express themselves, feel their feelings, and try to embrace and share them in a healthy way.”
Craig Robinson says, “Working with Lisa is as fun, fulfilling and friendly as one would imagine. We vowed to do a song together when we first met, so not only is she an amazing singer, she is a woman of her word. Thank you Lisa for allowing me to share in the spread of this beautiful message.”
For more from Lisa, go to: www.lisaloeb.com
Her new album, Feel What U Feel, is available at Amazon Music at www.amazon.com/FeelWhatUFeel.