MAGNET Exclusive: Premiere Of Sweaty Lamarr’s “Mysteries”

Those seeking proof that destiny is a real and quantifiable phenomenon could do a helluva lot worse than the short, profound, borderline-fantastical musical journey of Tara Giancaspro (a.k.a. Sweaty Lamarr).

Consider the backstory: It was less than two years ago that the Philly-by-way-of-Hoboken, N.J., writer decided to begin composing music and singing, taking voice lessons at the Matt Farnsworth Studio and with opera singer Chelsea Friedlander while simultaneously, in Giancaspro words, “watching an almost alarming number of ‘how to play Neko Case songs’ guitar videos on YouTube.”

And yet, Sweaty Lamarr’s first single, “I Have Always Been In Love With You,” would’ve been an auspicious debut for someone with triple the experience. The elegant and elegiac relationship requiem was originally planned as the closing track of a Philly-centered concept LP, but, says Giancaspro, “like the relationship that inspired it, the album was dragged out way too long and eventually fell apart.” Melding a Kristian Hersh-by-way-of-Lady Lamb lilting vocal with early-Crooked Fingers-esque acoustics, “I Have Always Been In Love With You” dances a bolero along the border between harrowing and beautiful.

Now, ahead of the April release of the colorfully titled A Little Bit Cuntry, A Little Bit Rock & Roll EP, Giancaspro returns with a new single. Premiering today at MAGNET, “Mysteries” details the unexpected spiritual awakening that Giancaspro experienced after losing her grandmother last Valentine’s Day.

“I’m a hardened ole atheist, but her death simply forced me to adjust my worldview,” says Giancaspro. “Not only did I need her around me in some way—I felt her. I felt her energy, love and presence at the most unexpected times. And I registered the lessons she sent my way as well. I’m releasing the song on Valentine’s Day to put out something meaningful on this very personal grief anniversary—and, to be candid, to distract myself as well. In this song, I framed the spiritual journey I foraged over the last year with the story of a gentle, tender new relationship to show how even when we think pain and rejection have jaded us out of hope, even on our most nihilist days, there is always the possibility of something unexpected around the corner, another mystery left.”

—Shawn Macomber