Creative Arts

Leyla McCalla Reimagines Langston Hughes Poems as Songs

leyla McCalla


Leyla McCalla is a really exciting new American folk singer based in New Orleans. Her newest album, Vari-Colored Songs drops today (following a super-successful Kickstarter). You can get a feel for it from the compilation video below.

I heard Leyla interviewed on NPR yesterday and it was a great show, wherein she discussed how some of the songs on the album are Langston Hughes poems set to music, and how some are old Southern folk songs that have been forgotten. Just plain love it.

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Starre Vartan is founder and editor-in-chief of and the author of the Eco-Chick Guide to Life. She's also a freelance science and environment writer who has published in National Geographic, CNN, Scientific American, Mental Floss, Pacific Standard, the NRDC, and many more. She lives on an island in Puget Sound with her partner and black cat. She was a geologist in her first career, and still picks up rocks wherever she goes.