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The Student News Site of Clayton High School.

The Globe

The Student News Site of Clayton High School.

The Globe

Laufey Enchants with “Bewitched”

New Album from Jazz Singer Laufey

“Bewitched,” Laufey’s second album, was released through AWAL on Sept. 8, 2023. In a runtime of 48:19, the Icelandic singer-songwriter picks up her thoughts about growing up and falling in love after “Everything I Know About Love,” her first album. “Bewitched” was recently nominated for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album for the 66th Annual Grammy Awards.

Laufey Lín Bing Jónsdóttir’s musical career began with piano and cello, with her soloing on cello with the Icelandic Symphonic Orchestra at age 15. Later, she performed on Island Got Talent (the British version of America’s Got Talent) and the Voice Iceland, becoming a finalist and semi-finalist. In 2021, she graduated from Berklee College of Music, receiving a Presidential Scholarship during her time there. 

Jónsdóttir’s voice is unflinchingly warm and mellow, reminiscent of other jazz vocalists like Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday. Throughout the album, her timbre shines in lyrics about lost loves and sultry meet-ups. “Dreamer,” the starting track, cements Laufey’s emotional growth and stability. Subjects that “Everything I Know About Love” was still hesitant about, “Bewitched” firmly stakes its ground. 

One of the more well-known songs from the album is “From the Start,” thanks to social media and the short-form videos that often feature it sped-up. Jónsdóttir is much more sassy, and the brisk bossa nova beat perfectly complements her lyrics. “From the Start” pays homage to Antônio Carlos Jobim and the more upbeat songs from “Getz/Gilberto.” 

Other homages are paid throughout the album, with Jónsdóttir covering Errol Garner and Johnny Burke’s iconic jazz standard, “Misty.” Jónsdóttir channels Holiday’s energy and Fitzgerald’s depth, preserving the original magic. 

One of my favorite songs on the album is “Letter to My 13 Year Old Self.” In an album full of romantic love, it expresses a different sort of love for oneself. Jónsdóttir gives sympathetic advice to herself and other 13-year-old girls that may be “different from the crowd / of big blue eyes, and long blonde hair, and boys that stare.” It is a ballad hopeful for the future and accepting of her past, encouraging listeners to do so as well.

“Bewitched” is an album for all lovers and dreamers. Laufey manages to tap into a new generation of listeners, introducing jazz in a way she once said would hopefully mirror Taylor Swift and country. The album is emotionally consistent and balanced, accessible to those who might cringe at listening to something before the 21st century. It is easy listening at its best– smooth vocals and addicting backgrounds, all wrapped up in heart-wrenching genuinity. Laufey’s “Bewitched” is guaranteed to charm anyone.

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About the Contributor
Rachel Chung
Rachel Chung, Feature Section Editor
Rachel Chung is a senior. This is her fourth year with the Globe. She is the Feature Section Editor this year, and she is excited to be able to mentor new staff members as well as continue writing and taking photos. Outside of Globe, Rachel also enjoys playing the flute, running on the Cross Country and Track teams, and drawing.
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