Elder was recently named 2023 Adult Contemporary New Artist of the Year by New Music Weekly
Acclaimed singer-songwriter and pianist Laurence Elder, recently named 2023 Adult Contemporary New Artist of the Year by New Music Weekly, unveils a soul-enriching video to the title track of his album Walk Another Mile which premieres on Vents Magazine. Produced and directed by Matt Ebbers, the simple yet visually arresting clip draws the viewer into Elder’s private music studio, where we’re invited to watch moments of inspiration and performance. In an unforced but compelling way, the song’s uplifting message of perseverance shines through.
Watch the “Walk Another Mile” video here.
“That’s what I hope listeners take away from both the song and video,” Elder says. “Even when things seem the toughest they can be, keep going – walk another mile. We’re all on a journey full of ups and downs, joys and sorrows, punctuated by milestones and life-changing moments along the way. Hopefully, we grow, become better at love and closer to the best version of ourselves.”
He adds, “Matt Ebbers had a great vision for the video, and the whole idea of juxtaposing me walking outside has a beginning and an end. It all comes full circle and ties together with the theme of the song really well.”
“Walk Another Mile” is a wistful, poignant pop ballad that steadily ratchets up the grandeur while effortlessly delivering hook after hook. In addition to Elder’s expressive tenor voice and distinctive piano playing, the track features ace musicianship by drummer Carlomagno Araya, bassist Golder O’Neill and guitarist Camilo Velandia. “I’m very fortunate to have such incredible musicians playing with me,” Elder says. “Golder and Camilo really brought the track to life, and I’ve always enjoyed working with Carlomagno – he was on my first album. He’s toured with Rubén Blades and has been nominated for Grammys. He’s a joy to play with.”
Other notable players on Walk Another Mile include guitarist Dan Warner, bassist Rodner Padilla and backing vocalist Beth Cohen. Jazz trumpet legend Randy Brecker guests on the spellbinding “Someone I Once Knew,” and a thoroughly unexpected and adventurous reworking of Seals & Crofts’ “Summer Breeze” features jazz guitar icon Mike Stern.
“I’m still pinching myself that I get to play with musicians of their caliber,” says Elder. “Randy has been so kind and supportive of my career. Playing with him is an amazing experience.” As to how Mike Stern came into the picture, Elder laughs and says, “I told a friend of mine that I wanted Mike to play on my cover of ‘Summer Breeze,’ and he said, ‘Are you nuts? Of all the songs you could pick for Mike Stern, you pick that one?’ But I played my arrangement for Randy, and he loved it, so he introduced me to Mike. Next thing you know, Mike Stern is playing on the track – and he crushed it!”
“Walk Another Mile” is the third single from Elder’s second album – it follows the upbeat, country-flavored gem “Now” and the swampy, New Orleans funk groover “Tested.”
Walk Another Mile has received euphoric acclaim from critics and fellow musicians alike, and it builds on the success of Elder’s exquisite debut album, Surrounded, which saw Jazziz magazine rave, “From Steely Dan to Bruce Hornsby to Sting…Joni Mitchell to Norah Jones, there was that special something that each had; a constant striving for the nuances that made them artists and not just musicians. Add Laurence Elder to that list.”
A captivating live performer, Elder has toured extensively, headlining with and/or opening for artists like Al Di Meola, Spyro Gyra, Dianne Reeves, Kenny Werner and Betty Buckley, among others. On being named 2023 Adult Contemporary New Artist of the Year by NMW (which also cited stars such as Harry Styles, Adele, Ed Sheeran and Beyonce), Elder says, “It’s such a cool honor. I love a lot of the artists they picked, and it’s remarkable to be in such company. I knew that some of my songs have been getting significant airplay nationally, but I didn’t expect to be singled out for an award like this.”
While the Walk Another Mile story grows, Elder indicates that new music is on the way for 2024. “It’s a process, and I have a lot of wonderful ideas that are in the mix,” he says. “I’ve been working on original material, as well as some novel treatments of songs by other artists that bring arranging to the level of composition. I don’t always have a blueprint before I start recording, but I’m looking to draw on multiple genres and incorporate rich jazz harmonies, strong melodic hooks, lucid imagery – the dance between light and darkness.”
He adds, “Most of all, I want to bring positivity into my music and create some sort of shining light for people. Great songs have a way of doing that.”
Listen on Spotify.