Melody Monday: Caissie Levy adds her own twist to classic showtunes in ‘With You’

Caissie Levy.

Caissie Levy.

Caissie Levy is currently one of Broadway’s biggest voices. She performs with such raw emotion and passion in her voice, that the listener can’t help but be touched.

Levy has taken on leading roles in iconic shows like Wicked, Rent and Hairspray, but it was when she starred as Sheila in Hair that she began to gain recognition.  More recently, Levy starred in Ghost the Musical, and has rejoined her former Hair co-star Will Swenson in the off-Broadway production of Murder Ballad.

On January 14, Caissie Levy released her very first solo EP, titled With You. The EP features her own renditions of classic modern show tunes that are featured in shows that she has previously starred in.

In one of the most stunning tracks on the EP, Levy sings a hauntingly beautiful arrangement of Rent’s “Without You”, that is sure to give anyone goose bumps – even those unaware of the emotional context of the song. Although the song is written as a duet, she sings it entirely on her own while still encompassing the emotion and intensity of the song.

With You also features a brilliant arrangement of Wicked’s “I’m Not That Girl.” In this version, Levy puts her own spin on the song, while still conveying it as a heartfelt romantic ballad.

The EP also features a live recording of “Here Right Now,” from Ghost the Musical, featuring her co-star Richard Fleeshman. Their voices work perfectly with one another and it is plain to see why their performance in the stage show received such critical acclaim. This was definitely the right track to record live, because it is such an expressive song that the essence could only be captured live.

It is interesting that Levy opted to create an EP populated with powerful ballads from shows that she had previously performed in, but overall, this seems to have been a good decision, as these songs demonstrate the strength and capabilities of her voice. In addition, her familiarity with these songs allowed her to take artistic license and play around with the sound and arrangements of the tracks to produce the renditions found on With You.

With this first EP, Levy is dipping her feet into a solo music career, and one can only hope there will be more to come. Hopefully on her next studio endeavor, listeners will get to hear her further develop her own musical style. (Fingers crossed she can nab former Hair co-star Gavin Creel to collaborate with her on the album, and Scott Alan to write a track or two.)

With You is currently available on iTunes.

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