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“Under One Roof” from Singer/Songwriter Lisa Mary

This isn’t a house of cards that tumbles or folds. “Under One Roof” from Michigan singer/songwriter Lisa Mary collects lasting moments and fastens the listener for soaring vocal harmony and a textured music bed. Filled with love and hope, “Under One Roof” is a finely woven tapestry of country and pop genres. Addressing the positive outlook of a young couple new to home ownership, “Under One Roof” possesses lyrical elements that can applicable to life beyond walls.

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At just 21, Mary sings with the maturity and experience of a seasoned veteran. Based in the Detroit area, Mary has won and been nominated several times for a Detroit Music Award. She earned a Best Country Pop Single Award for “Tie Her Down”. Mary made her Grand Ole Opry debut in October 2017. “Under One Roof” is from Mary’s self-released Everyone Has a Story To Tell debut album.

The lines that struck me the most comes just near the end of the song: this house of cards is gonna last, if we tell the truth, we’ll make it under one roof. I just gravitated towards the house of cards image and how so often in songwriting it’s a negative connotation. She makes it known, she’s realistic that it’s not going to be easy. I liked how she flipped the story. I also like how she repeats a double-stanza chorus: that’s when a boy becomes a man, and a girl becomes a woman, a house becomes a home, we’ll have a driveway we can pull-in. She then pauses ever so softly and continues from the outside looking in, this where we begin, be my shelter, be my bullet proof, under one roof. Her lingering voice changes octaves and tempo in that second stanza, adding a glorious harmony-laced trim. As corny as this sounds, her voice truly touches the heart. When she sings you forget about the physical house and you start to wander into different avenues of how this song could be equally applied. It could be a metaphor for a relationship or family. “Under One Roof” opens its doors to many interpretations.

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Mary’s voice is buoyant and hovers closely to an inviting acoustic guitar music bed. The percussion is flashier, but doesn’t disrupt the song’s flow. If you just listen to the drum work, it’ almost sounds like something from John Cougar Mellencamp or Jewel. So, she has her footprints dabbling in the pop genre. I do think, too, that this sound could be on the adult contemporary playlist. The guitar is mellow and sets the tone like a lit candle. It’s shapes are more linear than circular, but the wavelengths are intricate enough to sound graceful. The guitar definitively bolsters Mary’s vocals, even though I think if she sang this song a capella it would be just as stoic. I think the same could be said for a stirring piano, but I’m quite satisfied with the instrumentation. It’s excellent. The simple poignancy Mary creates in “Under One Roof” fills the heart.  

Mindy McCall

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