LUAH “between lively Celebração and longing Saudade”.
Authentic melodies, smooth arrangements, Afro-Brazilian rhythms and songs about the variety of moods between joyful celebração and yearning saudade – these are the ingredients of LUAH, the vocal trio of Elsa Johanna Mohr.
The singer-songwriter from Cologne is a world traveler with local grounding who knows what it’s like to dream in Portuguese and reconcile heart and mind, her own expectations and outside demands in English. Her songs tell of encounters that leave traces, of the courage to simply enjoy even fleeting moments
and of hopes for a future worth living. Elsa Johanna Mohr is on the road with her songs, whether at the kitchen table or traveling with her ukulele in her luggage, before each composed sound for vocals, percussion, synthesizer and guitar continues to grow in the studio. “I like intimate sounds that reach the ear immediately. Our vocal ranges are soprano and alto. The frequencies of stringed instruments like ukulele or mandolin match that. This instrumentation also allows us to play some songs purely acoustically. We enrich the foundation with the sub-bass of the synthesizer, and in the spaces in between we play with the effects of the electric guitar,” Johanna tells.
Johanna co-founded LUAH in 2017 with Lena-Larissa Senge and Ula Martyn-Ellis. Their paths first crossed at the Institute of Music at Osnabrück University of Applied Sciences. Johanna and Lena studied jazz vocals and Ula jazz guitar there. With the founding of LUAH, Johanna dared to merge her passions: already as a teenager she wrote songs, during her exchange year in Brazil she learned Brazilian Portuguese and discovered the country’s poetry for herself while studying Portuguese and Brazilian literature in Munich and Montpellier. The Brazilian percussion instruments caxixi, shaker and pandeiro are her rhythmic partners in the trio, Ula plays classical and electric guitar, Lena synthesizer and glockenspiel.
To celebrate LUAH’s 5th anniversary, the new album MO VI MENTO will be released in March 2022 on the Ladies & Ladies label, which is dedicated to promoting ladies* in the music industry. The trio has returned to Osnabrück especially for the recordings. This time
This time, however, they headed for the Fattoria Musica, where greats such as Chilly Gonzalez, Omar Sosa and Dominic Miller have recorded albums in the rooms of the historic farmhouse.
Johanna, Ula and Lena spent four intense days on location, cooking and walking together and – a stroke of luck in the March 2020 lockdown – close to each other in Fattoria Musica’s large Studio A. “This allowed us to totally immerse ourselves in the music together,” says Johanna.
MO VI MENTO gathers thirteen songs in flow. Taken literally, like a soulful evening on the coast in “Na Beira do Mar,” transferred as in pondering the flow of creative ideas in “Deeply Blue” or dancing with the inner wolves in “2 Wolves.” LUAH dedicates two songs to the natural resource of water: “Água pelas raízes” is an appeal to protect the roots of our existence, which are threatening to dry up, “Fading Beauty” drafts the vision that those who do not preserve the beauty of nature for tomorrow will perish. And finally, “Answer” features a message in a bottle, with an invitation to the riverbank on a moonlit night. The moon, “lua” in Portuguese and of female gender, also gives LUAH the name to which Johanna added the H from her name as a soft echo of her handwriting. From Kiel to Munich, from Trier to Bremen, LUAH have already won the ears of their audience. With MO VI MENTO, LUAH keep the moon woman a little company – and reach for the stars.