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Laufey With the LA Phil Concert Review: A Star Is Born… Who Sounds Like She Was Born a Hundred Years Ago

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Chris Willman Senior Music Writer and Chief Music Critic Attentive music fans have had some time now to become familiar with who and what the singer Laufey is: a young Icelandic-Asian-American woman whose traditional balladry often recalls the pre-rock era.

Still, for a few of us, it might have come as a very slight surprise to see her step onto the outdoor stage of the Ford in Hollywood over the weekend and be reminded that she is 24 and not 124.

If ever we’re tempted to mistake her for a centenarian, anyway, it’s only in the best possible way. Laufey’s ascendency to major-league pop artist is one of the most heartening musical phenomena of the last couple of years… or should be, to anyone who has any particular affection for the sounds and songwriting styles of the Great American Songbook years.

There’s never a complete shortage of talented youngish people who feel some kind of affinity for jazz standards, but one crucial difference with Laufey is, she’s writing her own great American songbook, or at least getting a very creditable start on one.

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