Basic Folk Podcast: Letitia VanSant

Basic Folk Cindy Howes Letitia VanSant Folk Alley
photo by: Shervin Lainez

There is something I find very telling about the way Letitia VanSant approaches her name with people. The Baltimore musician offers the pronunciation upfront (“Leh-TISH-ah” – “tish” rhymes with “wish.”), not assuming that someone would know how to say it. There is kindness and patience in the offering, but also she takes control of the narrative of her unique and beautiful name. On her website it says: “Letitia is an old family name that she shares with a number of women in her family. As a child she was nicknamed “Sandy” from VanSant, her middle name. Her friends still call her Sandy, but she responds to both!”

A shy child, Letitia grew up with a passion for social justice and pursued a career in politics. She worked at a progressive lobby group in Washington, DC, until she decided to make music a full time venture. Her writing does have a political edge occasionally. She also bravely approaches the topic of sexual assault, garnering from her personal experience. We talked about how she made the choice to address her experience in such a public and upfront manner. She is a clear-headed, smart and compassionate person. I really enjoyed getting to know Letitia VanSant! Her new album Circadian is out now!

Thanks for listening!

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