Winner of the 2017 Ameripolitan Music Award for “Best Female Rockabilly Artist” and named the “Best Up-And-Coming Band” by New York’s Hudson Valley Magazine, Lara Hope & The Ark-Tones have a forthcoming album coming out on June 25, 2021: “Here To Tell The Tale.” The group – fronted by Long Island, New York native Lara Hope – has spent much of the past few years on the road in Europe and the United States, touring alongside The Brian Setzer Orchestra, The Blasters and The Reverend Horton Heat. Beyond being invited to perform at the original site of the Woodstock Festival, Hope herself has been featured on the cover of UK Rock ‘N’ Roll magazine and New York’s Ulster Magazine.
Lara Hope & The Ark-Tones is far more than “a rockabilly band,” per its musical roots and pedigree. It was initially born from a hybrid of Hope’s former band The Champtones and upright bassist Matt “The Knife” Goldpaugh’s international psychobilly act The Arkhams. Hope and Goldpaugh also play as a duo, The Gold Hope Duo, and under that moniker they recently self-released a very topical album called “Songs In The Key Of Quarantine.”
On May 27, 2021, I had the pleasure of speaking with Lara Hope via Zoom, as embedded below. Besides “Here To Tell The Tale,” we discussed the following:
- Musical and performance influences prior to rockabilly (hint: it involves Jewish community theater)
- Her Long Island roots, growing up in Plainview, New York
- Life during COVID-19, including performing weekly live-streamed shows
- Future plans for 2021 and 2022