Artist in Focus: Laney Jones and the Lively Spirits

Brown University Folk Festival is ecstatic to welcome Laney Jones back to Providence, this year with her band, the Lively Spirits. She graciously took time off her tour to call in for an interview. Read all about her new sound, and pet kangaroos, below and see her on April 25th on Lincoln Field!

10500538_799085520135404_6963905488909548312_nHow did you get started in music?

I’ve always been a music listener. I had taken lessons when I was younger, but I hadn’t really started getting involved with music until 4 years ago. I was at school studying business and got really bored after my first semester. I didn’t love the major and I didn’t know what I wanted to do so from there, I started teaching myself guitar. It grew from a hobby, to a passion, to a job.

So you’ve taught yourself quite a few instruments then…

I have. I started off on guitar, played around on the ukulele, and then borrowed a friend’s banjo. It felt totally great. Of late, I’ve been mostly a banjo player.

Do you come from a musical family, or did you learn mostly from school?

Mostly from school or from my own listening. None of my folks play instruments or have taken me to concerts, but now they really support it.

So have you seen any cool concerts lately?

I saw Hurray for the Riff Raff this past summer, they’re always really great.


I heard you grew up on an exotic animal farm, what was that like?

It wasn’t necessarily like a farm, but there were definitely exotic animals. My parents got to retire early so they sold their business and kept the land. They got some pretty weird and cool things. Instead of growing up with dogs, I grew up for kangaroos. It was crazy to some people. Like, before kindergarten, everyone has to get testing to make sure you’re ready to go to school. The person who was testing me asked what a fence was. I told him it’s what holds my Kangaroos and he thought I had an overactive imagination. I had to get psychological testing for a week at an outside facility because he didn’t think to check with my parents.

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