Kulchur

Where are they now: The Nil Lara update

Of course, "nobody's going anywhere" is precisely what Metro Blue fears, as anxious as everyone else to jump-start Lara's muse and begin rolling tape. Although the label has removed him from its active roster and wiped out any mention of Lara from its Website and promotional apparatus, they still sent a senior A&R representative to Lara's Power Studios concert, checking in on the status of their former golden boy. After all, the climate of the marketplace seems more suited to Lara's music now than ever before. The runaway success of the Dave Matthews Band has proved that it's certainly possible to take a folksy, acoustic finger-picking grubsinger, wrap him up into a pop package, and then sell it to the corn-fed collegiate masses in the heartland; this year's much vaunted "Latin" music explosion provides yet another commercial angle.

Metro Blue is also aware that should it dump Lara, several of his old suitors are waiting in the wings. Such as David Byrne, who during a recent interview with Kulchur, inquired eagerly about Lara. "He called me the other day," Byrne gushed, "and said he's got some new songs, but I haven't heard them yet. He said he was going to send me a tape, so if you see him, I'm waiting! I do want to hear what he's up to!" Informed that we'd allbeen waiting for those mysterious new compositions for almost four years, Byrne simply groaned, "Oh gosh!"

Of course at this point Metro Blue has little to lose in continuing to play the waiting game: Lara remains contractually bound to them. Which seems to suit the singer just fine. "Right now I'm just writing music here at home," Lara says. "My energy's focused on trying to make another record. I don't how, when, or why.... It's like a big puzzle. All the pieces are up in the air and you pull them down one by one, little by little." Pushed for elaboration Lara good-naturedly answers, "What's my message to people who are waiting patiently for me? Don't wait. Put out your ownrecord."

Send your music news, local releases, and general gunk to Brett Sokol at 2800 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33137. Fax to 305-571-7678 or e-mail brett_sokol@miaminewtimes.com

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