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Leslie Mendelson at The Southgate House Revival

Photo Cred: Mary Ellen Matthews

With her enchanted voice and evocative songwriting, Leslie Mendelson has won over the hearts and minds of both an adoring fanbase and fellow artists alike. No less than Jackson Browne has declared, “Leslie's melodies are timeless. They reach me way back in my youth somewhere. I hear traces of Burt Bacharach and Carole King, and hooks and passages that remind me of the pop songs I grew up hearing on the radio,” while The Wallflowers frontman Jakob Dylan shares: “Voices like Leslie’s can get away with almost anything. Along with being a great songwriter, this leaves her with few if any peers.”

A Grammy Award-nominated artist, Mendelson returns this summer with her fourth studio album, After The Party. For this latest effort, she collaborates with not one, but three producers: the legendary Peter Asher (James Taylor, Linda Ronstadt, Bonnie Raitt), the young, in-demand Tyler Chester (Madison Cunningham, Sara Bareilles, Sara Watkins) and her longtime songwriting partner, three-time Grammy Award-winner, Steve McEwan. Recorded at Jackson Browne’s studio Grove Masters in Santa Monica, CA, she was joined by an ace band featuring guitarists Waddy Wachtel and John Jorgenson, bassists Leland Sklar and Derrick Anderson, and drummers Jim Keltner and Abe Rounds.

“Collaboration was so important to me with these songs. My previous album, If You Can’t Say Anything Nice… looked inward and was often colored by the dark socio-political climate circa 2018 and 2019 when it was written. Throw in the pandemic during which it was released, and it just became really clear that I needed to have fun making music again,” explains Mendelson. “When the opportunity presented itself to have both Tyler and Peter produce me, along with Steve who’s been with me since the very beginning of my career, it felt as if the stars had aligned and were demanding that I indulge in the joy of creating with all of these musical geniuses who wanted to work together.”

Throughout After The Party’s ten tracks, Mendelson crafts a distinctive folk-rock, pop-Americana flavor, evoking the sounds of Laurel Canyon, but with the downtown grit and sharp wit of Brooklyn, the city she has called home for over two decades now. There’s a refreshing realness and effortless musicality that feels both nostalgic and new on songs like “Rock And Roll On The Radio,” “Signs Of Life,” and “I Know A Lot Of People.” The album’s first single “Other Girls” is an intoxicating twist of aural voyeurism mixed with a healthy dose of sexual openness. Its chorus suggestively musing, "I like it, I said I like it when you talk about other girls.”

"‘Other Girls,' is about women empowering women,” says Mendelson. “Who doesn’t love women?! It’s also another way of looking at conventional relationships and indulging in fantasy. A bit of commentary on the ever-changing world we live in.”

Other standout tracks, “Have a Little Heart,” "The Good Life” and the title track offer warm musings on a life worth living and a newfound appreciation for the little things.

“I would love for this record to connect,” said Mendelson. “I think there’s something in there to speak to people. There are personal moments, there are moments of fun, where you can turn it up loud and sing along, and there are moments of reflection. This record is an emotional journey, and I hope that people can take it with me.”

“Leslie is one of these very rare singers who can combine elegant precision with the soul and emotional resonance of a deeply moving writer and performer,” concludes her producer, Peter Asher. "She has a remarkable voice and one we need to hear.”

After The Party will be co-released June 2024 via Pasadena Records and Royal Potato Family.

Leslie Mendelson will be at The Southgate House Revival on Thursday, March 14th!