Things to Do in Fort Wayne and Beyond

Soul-pop duo Lawrence promises a great time

Bringing high-energy show to Piere’s in April


Chris Hupe

Whatzup Features Writer

Published March 23, 2022

Lawrence may be a band unfamiliar to most in the area, but chances are you have heard some of their work.

Siblings Clyde and Gracie Lawrence are veterans of the industry, only recently deciding to put their talents together to have another outlet for their creativity. They’ll be performing April 2 at Piere’s Entertainment Center in Fort Wayne.

Young Talent

The children of Marc Lawrence, a prominent director, writer, and producer of major films, the siblings were exposed to the entertainment industry early in life.

In fact, when Marc Lawrence was working on the 2000 film Miss Congeniality, when he was not pleased with his options for the Miss United States pageant theme song, he enlisted the help of his then 5-year-old son, Clyde, who promptly wrote his own version.

The other producers chose it without knowing its writer. The song was prominently featured in the film, leading Clyde to become the youngest member of the Songwriters Guild of America.

While attending Brown University, Clyde joined his sister, Gracie, who had made a name for herself by acting in television shows and films, as well as on Broadway.

The resulting synchronicity was undeniable, leading the pair to collaborate and release their first album, Breakfast, which reached No. 6 on the iTunes R&B charts on its first day of release in 2016.

Finding Their Sound

The eight-piece band the two put together, complete with a full horn section, is comprised of childhood and college friends that play what they refer to as “soul pop,” a mixture of R&B, soul, funk, and pop.

“We grew up on Motown, Stevie Wonder, the Beatles, and a lot of singer-songwriter stuff like Carole King and Randy Newman,” Gracie said in an interview with Whatzup. “That was always our favorite kind of music, and it moved us.

“We wanted to make music like that, but it wasn’t really a conscious thing. It’s just that when we would write, that was the music that come out of us.”

Their latest album, Hotel TV, is their third studio effort and features the inspirational hit “Don’t Lose Sight,” which you might have heard in commercials for Microsoft.

In addition to being likable enough to help sell computers, the song fits beautifully into today’s world and has become an escape for people who are fed up with politics, war, and the pandemic.

Aware of how the song resonates with some of audiences, Gracie said it was never a goal of theirs to create something that would be relevant during the pandemic or a time when part of the world is at war. However, they are proud it has become something of importance for many listeners.

“I hope that it makes people feel good and I hope that it makes people feel inspired, but I definitely don’t think it’s up to us to say how important or not important it is,” she said. “I think the most we can ask is that people feel good listening to it and it makes them feel hopeful and happy, at least in the time they are listening to it, and that they connect to it in some way.”

Building Fan Base

Touring has been a key component of the group’s rise. They sold out shows during the first leg of the Hotel TV Tour in New York City, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Boston, while also having been asked to open for acts such as Lake Street Dive, Soulive, and O.A.R. and also appearing at major music festivals like Bonnaroo.

Next month’s show, however, will be the first time Lawrence have played a headline show in Indiana.

They aren’t afraid to venture into new markets, though, and are excited to visit the Summit City with opening act Stacey Ryan.

“It’s fun to come to new cities because there’s a good chance that a lot of the people there have never seen us before or, if they have, they had to travel to see us,” Clyde said. “I think that means there’s going to be more fans and more new experiences for us and for them.

“Ultimately, our goal is to continue building a fan base so we can continue to tour and really have a devoted group of people, no matter how big or small, in every city,” he added. “Even if the venue isn’t going to be exactly the same size as the one we played in Chicago (at the House of Blues), it’s all about continuing to build that community in each different city in America and hopefully beyond.”

When you stop by Piere’s to see what all the fuss is about, expect a high-energy show filled with fun music and the chance of stage hijinks at any given point.

The band prides itself on presenting a true live experience, absent of backing tracks. They said that you can be assured that everything you see on stage is being created right in front of you.

“It’s definitely a show where, if you are a fan of the band, you don’t need to find other people that already know about the band to bring with you,” Clyde said. “We highly encourage people to convince people that have not yet heard of the band to come out to the show. We promise they will have a good time and will be fans of the band by the time they leave.”

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