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'Pictures From America' by Lauren Hoffman

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Lauren Hoffman: A Call For Common Ground

Lauren Hoffman: A Call For Common Ground

'Pictures From America' by Lauren Hoffman

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Lauren Hoffman's "Pictures From America" gently challenges the idea that politics and culture force people to remain isolated. courtesy of the artist hide caption

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courtesy of the artist

Lauren Hoffman's "Pictures From America" gently challenges the idea that politics and culture force people to remain isolated.

courtesy of the artist

Thursday's Pick

  • Song: "Pictures From America"
  • Artist: Lauren Hoffman
  • CD: Interplanetary Traveler
  • Genre: Pop

Nothing neutralizes racism quite like integration — like putting people from disparate backgrounds in the same place and letting everyone learn to coexist. On her new album, Interplanetary Traveler, singer-songwriter Lauren Hoffman makes a strong case for that idea, particularly in "Pictures From America."

A subtly Middle Eastern-tinged ballad, "Pictures From America" gently challenges the idea that politics and culture force people to remain isolated and separate. "Face to face, we could be friends," Hoffman coos sweetly before finding common ground with others in the form of "making tea and breaking bread" and other mundane, universal realities. A call for everyone to take and share pictures of where we live, it sounds wistful and hopeful at the same time, while never descending into the mawkishness its subject matter might seem to suggest.