Etta Lea writes and performs music that features lush vocals augmented by acoustic and electric guitar and mandolin. Her arrangements vary from minimalist ambient rock to rollicking Americana, with an undeniable pop sensibility woven throughout. Songwriting influences include Patty Griffin, John Prine, Sarah Harmer, U2 and Natalie Merchant.
During Etta Lea’s formative years in Virginia, her momma made 70s country radio the soundtrack of life at home while her father and his brothers regularly played bluegrass for family gatherings. Lea began writing poetry at a young age, and began setting her poems to music during her teenage years. Her songwriting really took off when she moved to North Carolina and began singing with her sister Eva Gael; she's been performing live shows ever since.
Most recently a member of critical darlings The Near Misses, Lea has fronted and written with several area bands including Ishi, Boaliri and Terra Firma. She was selected as Best Local Female Singer in the Creative Loafing Best of Charlotte Awards: "Subtlety when it's called for, impressive full-tilt growl when needed..." The Near Misses won the “Best New Band” award in the Arts & Entertainment category of the Creative Loafing Readers’ Choice Awards, and was also named “Best Band” (Readers’ Choice) in its “Best of Charlotte: International Edition.” Creative Loafing also selected Etta Lea for the Singer-Songwriter category of "Rock & Roll Call: The Best of Charlotte's Original Music Scene," describing her as "the honey-voiced alter ego of Lea Pritchard." Lea has recorded two EPs, It's True and Canvas; Near Misses albums Marigold and Early Hits are available on iTunes.