Lisa LeBlanc came blazing out of her quiet francophone New Brunswick hometown (pop. 51) on an incandescent trail of banjo notes. Armed with fiery Acadian charm and a voice that sounds like it should belong to a road-seasoned veteran twice her age, at just 22 Leblanc became a bona-fide superstar in francophone Canada with her eponymous 2012 debut album. Lisa Leblanc's effort went platinum, selling nearly 100,000 copies and climbing to #8 on Billboard’s Canadian Albums chart.
Of course, a voice this big was never going to remain a local secret. With her new English-language EP, Highways, Heartaches and Time Well Wasted, her wry songwriting displays more alt-country influences, and her backing band (electric guitar and drums) drives her self-described folk-trash style toward the realm of cowpunk. With her heart on her sleeve and her flying fingers alternating between guitar and banjo, LeBlanc’s star is firmly in the ascendant. FF/LS


Liz Stevens
The dynamic lead singer and songwriter of Calgary’s Copperhead, who blend dark, throaty Motown, swaggering rock, folk with a rusty edge and some spacey instrumentation, is loved for her haunting melodies and smoky, soulful voice. Her electric guitar-based songs are characterized by a blues heart and rock ‘n’ roll soul.