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Friday October 31st 2014

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Unleashing Mary Lambert

By Jennifer Leigh

When Mary Lambert takes the stage at Pensacola Unleashed on Sunday night, be prepared for a roller coaster of emotions.

“The shows are really intense,” Lambert said on her website.

While Lambert’s songwriting derives from dark topics such as rape and child abuse—she is a survivor of both—she aims at lifting the audience’s spirits during her live performances.

Perhaps her most uplifting and famous performance was at the 2014 Grammy Awards. She sang the hook to “Same Love” alongside Macklemore and Ryan Lewis as Queen Latifah officiated the marriages of 33 same-sex couples.

The duo had come to Lambert, who was working at a bar at the time, to write a chorus for their marriage equality anthem. Lambert wrote the chorus that included the lyrics “And I can’t change / Even if I tried,” which was from her point of view as a Christian and a lesbian.

The song reached No. 11 on the Billboard Hot 100 and gave Lambert a major career boost with a Grammy nomination and her first EP “Welcome to the Age of My Body.”

Through her candid songwriting, Lambert has been more than an entertainer, but an inspiration to her fans who have experienced many of the things she writes about. The importance of her words is not lost on the singer.

In fact, Lambert recalls on her website that fans have come forward to say that because of her music, they found the courage to come out to the families and friends.

“If I can give that fight to somebody, then I want to keep doing it,” she said.

PENSACOLA UNLEASHED
WHEN: 8 p.m. May 22-24 and 6 p.m. May 25
WHERE: Pensacola Beach
COST: $20 to $150
DETAILS: pensacolaunleashed.com