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Toronto’s Lisa Patterson blends EDM and world music in her new humanitarian single, ‘The Colour of Blood’

When I first started taking music lessons with Lisa Patterson, I was curious about her musical background. Along the wall at the entrance of her Toronto studio are CDs of her solo work and her latest world music collaboration project, ROAM.

In between re-learning chords, we gabbed about Tori Amos — I wanted to learn “Winter” as my first song — and she told me all about how her Roma-Celtic background inspired her ROAM project and shared tidbits about her bad-ass (my words, not hers) post-punk/new wave rocker days back in London, Ontario.

Open and pure-hearted, Lisa is one of the most inspiring and giving people that I’ve encountered.

So when Lisa was thinking of revamping her 2009 ROAM song “Stars” to highlight the plight of refugees, I offered to do an EDM mash-up without any reservations.

She loved it, and today, she’s released that mash-up, with additional production, as a single and created a music video to go along with it.

“When I made this song back in 2009, I always had in mind visuals to go along with it,” Lisa tells me over the phone. “Back then, I always felt that one day I would make that song visual and the circumstances just recently came together.”

Re-titled “The Colour of Blood,” Lisa teamed up with a videographer and co-directed the video — even going so far as to creating storyboards during the edit.

The EDM production has clearly inspired Lisa: “I’m generally into acoustic instrumentation, but hey, there’s room on the dance floor for a humanitarian message right?”

Lisa produced the video in affiliation with her Citizen Suitcase project, a group where artists donate their time and skills to welcome new refugees to Toronto.

“I’m a a pilot’s daughter and I was lucky enough to travel around the world from a young age,” she says. “I think seeing how other cultures lived really informed my music and I was influenced by a sense of the global community.”


Watch the video for “The Colour of Blood”:


Related Links

  • ROAM Music
  • The Citizen Suitcase
  • Content Creator
    Robert J. Ballantyne is the editor-in-chief at Popjournalism. Previously, he was a journalist at the CBC on a number of news programs including the fifth estate, Marketplace and The National. He also worked as a staff writer at the Toronto Star
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