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Pittsburgh Artist of the Week: Merce Lemon

Courtesy of the artist

Do you remember that crazy Winnebago guy from the old YouTube video? Merce Lemon remembers and took his line “Will You Do Me a Kindness?” and turned it into a gorgeous new song about the inescapable loneliness we often feel as human beings.

Take a listen to the new song “Will You Do Me A Kindness?” below and learn more about Merce Lemon and her band.

Merce Lemon recently spoke with WYEP's Joey Spehar.

Nathan Cephas

What’s your musical history up to this point?

I've been making songs and sounds and singing since I was a little kid. I had an a cappella group when I was 10 or something and I changed the name every time I had a show. Then there was my punk band 'Two Dragons Black and Red' when I was 12. Then I played sports and didn't play a show again until my 19th birthday when I lived in Seattle. I've been playing songs under my name since then.

How do you describe your sound? 

Melody and lyric driven songs.

Tell us more about the song "Will You Do Me a Kindness." What inspired you to write it and what does it mean to you?

This was the first song I wrote after recording my album last spring. It is a collage of moments, lines, and feelings I had gathered over the months. The title comes from a quote I heard in the YouTube video of the crass Winnebago man and the rest kind of spilled out from there. It is a song close to my heart, the inescapable loneliness we feel as humans, the little things we notice when we are alone, the fear yet desire to give ourselves wholly to another.

What was the first album that really changed your life?

I’m going to pick two that had a huge effect on me as an artist: 'Viva Last Blues' by Palace Music and 'Time (The Revelator)’ by Gillian Welch. I’ve listened to both of these albums obsessively and they have hugely impacted my song writing.

Who are some other Pittsburgh artists you think more people should listen to?

Gina Gory, Her Suit, Pat Coyle, 14A, Sneeze Awful, and so many more I'm probably spacing on!

Sadie Loaf

Any other super interesting things about you we should know?

I’d like to shout out my dreamy band; Pat Coyle, Benji Brody, and Reid Magette. Making songs and touring with them this past year has re-lit a flame in me, and I’m so excited to share it all.

Merce Lemon are:
Merce Lemon: Lead vocals and rhythm guitar
Reid Magette: Lead guitar
Pat Coyle: Drums and harmonies
Ben Brody: Bass

Joey Spehar is a Pittsburgh native who started as a volunteer D.J. at WYEP, fresh out of college in 2006. He took on any job they’d let him do like editing audio, engineering remote broadcasts, and shoveling snow.