How is it that it’s taken Broadway legend Lillias White this long to release her first studio album? Regardless of the answer, we’re grateful that the Tony and Daytime Emmy Award winner has finally completed Get Yourself Some Happy!, out today via Old Mill Road Recording.
Described by The New York Times as a “one-of-a-kind performer who combines the sass of a classic blues mama with the skill of a Broadway star,” White is internationally recognized for her powerful vocals and song interpretation. Get Yourself Some Happy! delivers a modern mix of Motown, Standards, Rock-and-Roll, Broadway, and Jazz – all re-invented for today’s audiences. Centering on the theme of happiness, the titles range from the soulful “When You Wish Upon a Star” to a lightning-fast “The Twist” to a raw “Happy Together” to a sweet and tender version of “You’re My Best Friend.” White’s disco-inspired, orchestral “You’ve Made Me So Very Happy” will inspire dancing, and her tropical “Put on a Happy Face” will make listeners grin from ear to ear.
Recorded and mixed in July 2019 at Old Mill Road Recording in East Arlington, Vermont, Get Yourself Some Happy! is the culmination of a 30-year friendship and professional collaboration between Lillias White and her musical director and accompanist, Timothy Graphenreed. Best known for his arrangements on the iconic musical, The Wiz, Timothy tragically passed away on March 1, 2020. The album is dedicated to his memory.
White is known for her work on both stage and screen. Her performance in Cy Coleman’s Broadway musical, The Life, won her the Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical. She was nominated for a second Tony Award for her brilliant work in Fela! Additional Broadway credits include Barnum, Dreamgirls, Cats, Carrie, Once on This Island, How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, and Chicago.
White received the Daytime Emmy Award for her role as Lillian Edwards for Outstanding Performer in a Children’s Series on Sesame Street in 1992 and is beloved by audiences around the world for voicing the lead muse Calliope in Disney’s animated feature Hercules. White received unanimous acclaim for her work in the Carnegie Hall Concert version of South Pacific, starring Reba McEntire, which was broadcast on PBS’ Great Performances. Recent TV credits include the Baz Luhrmann-directed NETFLIX series The Get Down, Russian Doll and Search Party. She has appeared in cabarets and concert halls around the world, including The Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center.
“This recording, Get Yourself Some Happy!, is a labor of love put together by the late, great Timothy Graphenreed, Dr. Joshua Sherman, and myself,” said White. “It was a joy to create. The songs were handpicked and heartfelt – and we hope the album brings smiles to your faces. I want people to see you (with your earbuds in) smiling – and wonder what you’re listening to. I hope you go out and get yourself some happy!”
“Lillias is an inspiring human being with an unmatched ability to raise the spirits of an audience,” adds producer Joshua Sherman. “Stop what you’re doing. Forget your troubles, and Get Yourself Some Happy!”
Upcoming concert appearances by White include:
July 23-24 – Feinstein’s at the Nikko – San Francisco, CA
August 12-14 – The Green Room 42 – New York, NY
August 27-28 – The Art House – Provincetown, MA