By Jamie Lindsey
Larkin Grimm stepped on stage at Joplin’s local Bookhouse Cinema, barefoot, with a guitar in her hands and harp at her side and asked the audience to sing a series of notes while she began her set. After traveling for over a month on tour, Larkin Grimm stopped in Bookhouse, her 15th tour stop since beginning in New York.
Starting with her guitar her lyrics are incredibly powerful and emotional which thankfully overpowered some of the out of tune audience members (myself included). Mesmerized, the audience watched Larkin Grimm take her Harp out and begin to play and sing. Larkin said laughing after the show, “I think it’s funny, they expect to see an angel then they see that I have a sailor’s mouth and it is not what they expected.”
The switch between the guitar and harp switched the tone of the set, and definitely kept Larkin Grimm memorable in all of our minds. “It definitely helps not to be another girl with a guitar. I love the guitar, it’s a great instrument, but people see a lot of the same thing so it’s definitely nice to have something a little different you can do.”
Curious about what inspired her lyrics, Grimm answered, “I grew up reading a lot of southern gothic literature like Carson McCullers. I love Faulkner and I think there are a lot of southern writers who just saw a lot of darkness in humanity. But music is our medicine, it’s the thing that lifts us up. So i think my music is all about like ‘here we are in this big gross scary violent world and we are all just trying to lift ourselves up’. So I just acknowledge the darkness. It’s not like goth where I want to wallow in the darkness, but it’s more like I’m going to meet you here with all the things you’re trying to hide and let you feel your feelings about it and try to uplift you.”
You hear her music inspirations like The Alice Coltrane, Yma Sumac and Otis Redding in her music both on the guitar and harp.
She wants starting musicians to know, “Your music is this call to your people. It brings your people to you. There are enough people in this world where you will find your people. If you put yourself out there, you will find the people who need to see you and need to be inspired by you. Sometimes what’s inspiring is not a perfect show, sometimes what it is is they see your imperfections and they think ‘hey, I can do that too’. Music is such a healing thing for everybody who practices it, it’s always worth it.”
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