Published Oct 03, 2016Acadian "folk-trash" darling Lisa LeBlanc recently went on what she says was one of the craziest trips of her 26-year-old life: staying home. After two months of travelling in the Southern U.S. last fall, LeBlanc spent winter at home in Montreal, working on her sophomore record, Why You Wanna Leave, Runaway Queen?
"It was the first time since I moved from my parents place [in Rosaireville, NB] that I was going to stick around for more than a week," she says. "Since I've been 19 or 20, I've been on the road." Like the more rooted future she envisioned in road-weary "Lignes d'Hydro," off her platinum-selling self-titled 2012 debut, LeBlanc has finally hung pictures on her wall and unpacked her boxes. Not that she's stopped singing about Highways, Heartaches and Time Well Wasted (her 2014 English language EP); she was challenging herself to "just kind of hang out" and not hit the road as soon as she got bored.
Why You Wanna Leave, Runaway Queen? started out acoustic before LeBlanc's rock instincts took over again. "When I came back from that trip to the U.S., I had just played old-time music, bluegrass and Cajun for two months straight," says LeBlanc. "And then I was like, 'Who am I kidding? I'm not doing an acoustic record.'" In the studio with her band, recordings gradually got more electric until it became more folk-rock — or "folk-trash," a label she invented. The fact that an instrumental banjo track sits alongside a banjo-driven cover of Motörhead's "Ace of Spades" makes total sense in LeBlanc's world.
But maybe that acoustic album will happen eventually. "Cajuns are Acadians," LeBlanc says. "I think it's my favourite music of all time. I really want to have a Cajun band."