Lori Fredrics — singer & teacher

I met Lori Fredrics whilst studying for an MA in TV / Film composition at Kingston University in SW London during 2002–3. Whilst she didn’t teach me directly, her husband, Howard, who taught also at the music department, lead a module that I completed which involved learning about sound synthesis and using various software to mutate, morph, combine sounds. They both since moved back to their native USA.

What’s your earliest memory of music?

This memory comes from when I was about three years old. I remember my best friend had a piano and her older sister was practicing for her lessons. The instrument fascinated me. I really wanted a piano!

Why, when, what did you start singing? Do you play / have you played any other instruments?

When I was about 7 years old I kept asking my father for a piano. He said that if he bought me a nice piano I would have to practice every day. He then took me to the music shop in the local mall and they had guitars too. He told me that if he bought me a $25 guitar instead of a piano, I could practice it as much or as little as I wanted. Being a bit intimidated by the thought of making a commitment to practicing, I chose the guitar, however I did probably practice that one and the much nicer ones that followed, every day for the next ten years!

I did finally get a piano when I was a teen, a lousy spinet!

What kinds / styles / genres of music do you sing? Which styles did you start singing in which order?

My first guitar teacher taught me folk style guitar and I started playing and singing songs from a “Pete Seeger” songbook filled with traditional American folk songs. I recently spoke to my guitar teacher from back then and she remarked that I was very serious about my lessons and that I was one of the only kids who was willing to sing to their guitar playing. I don’t remember feeling “serious” about music, just interested in how it worked.

Later on I became interested in rock and popular music and played in a number of bands in high school. I also wrote over a hundred of original sings. I first took classical lessons because I knew from my mom who had trained in ballet, that if you wanted to be good at something you should get classical training. I decided to be a voice major in college because it became apparent that my singing skills were superior to my skills as an instrumentalist or a writer. I chose classical over jazz, the two choices for college study in that day, because I thought classical would be the greater challenge for me.

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