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Published on April 5th, 2004 | by Gerry Galipault

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Big things from ‘Little Things’

Producer Peter Zizzo has worked his magic with Avril Lavigne and Vanessa Carlton. Now comes this 25-year-old from New York.

“I didn’t know what the album was going to sound like,” Lightman said of “Little Things.” “I didn’t have any preconceived notions. I wanted to see where things went. It took about nine months (to record), so every day was a different idea and a different concept.”

It helped that Lightman is driven to succeed. She wrote or co-wrote all the R&B-inflected rock songs, plays acoustic guitar, sang all the backing tracks and arranged the vocals. She even got a little help from one of Zizzo’s friends, Chic legend Nile Rodgers, who played guitar on several tracks, including “Devils and Angels.”

“I had developed my sound before I met (Pete),” Lightman said, “but it was really nice that he understood what I was trying to do. Obviously, when you work with someone closely, you have your differences, but for the most part, we had a similar view of what things should sound like, and that’s why I wanted to work with him.”

Lightman is blessed with a lyrical touch and a compelling voice (as she proved at a Lava showcase during SXSW) … and she possesses the gift of timing.

“I played in a lot of bands and did different kinds of things musically,” she said. “Finally, I got a song together that I thought epitomized what I was trying to do. I sent it out to a management company, and I didn’t know who they managed at all. My friend was a receptionist there. She heard it, passed to a manager and he set me up with Peter, who then set me up with Lava.

“All the major players came together within three months of each other.”

Now comes the hard part: waiting on the SoundScan numbers. Lightman isn’t worried.

“I’ve been getting a lot of positive feedback from people,” she said. “As long as it stays like that, I’ll be happy. I just want people to like it. If it’s like all my friends buy it, that’ll be it – that’ll be enough.

ON THE WEB: www.tobylightman.com.

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About the Author

Gerry Galipault debuted Pause & Play online in October 1997. Since then, it has become the definitive place for CD-release dates — with a worldwide audience.



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