Lisa Loeb was born in 1968 in Maryland in the USA, although she grew up in Dallas before moving to New York after leaving university. After touring small venues, her lucky break was for Ethan Hawke to insist that a song of hers called 'Stay (I missed you)' be used as the theme tune to the otherwise uninteresting 1994 film 'Reality Bites'. The song took off, and became the sixth most popular single in the American charts of that year (due largely to near-constant radio play), and something of a media sensation.

A wandering acoustic ballad, it was in complete contrast to the rest of the contemporary chart, which in 1994 had been dominated by Ace of Base and the watered-down r'n'b of Boyz II Men and Toni Braxton. A Joni Mitchell-esque career was predicted for Loeb, although she has subsequently not had a great deal of commercial success. This is partially due to the fact that Loeb was - uniquely - not signed to a record label whilst 'Stay' was at number one; by the time Geffen picked up her tab, the momentum had been lost.

Her debut album, 'Tails' (credited to 'Lisa Loeb and Nine Stories'), was released a year later, whilst her second album, 'Firecracker', was released in 1997. Neither sold particularly well, although she has her fans. 'Firecracker', too, was out-of-step with current trends, as 1997 was the year of Alanis Morrisette's legacy. Neither Loeb's image nor her music were as confrontational as Morrisette-esque acts that were emerging at the time.

Nonetheless, she has a passionate fan network, always gets good reviews, and it seems likely that she'll remain around for as long as she wants to be around. In 2002, still as lovely as ever, she released a new album, 'Cake and Pie', which slammed into the Billboard charts at number one hundred and ninety nine.

Amusingly, 'Lisa Loeb' is an anagram of 'Lobe Sail'. And 'Ale Boils'.

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