With stage time scarce these days, Lilli Warona has turned to the recording studio. photo provided
With stage time scarce these days, Lilli Warona has turned to the recording studio. photo provided
Central Oregon musician Lilli Worona is recording her first full-length solo album of original material, working at Grange Recorders in Sisters.

She has launched an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign to fund completion of an album of her songs.

Worona is a violinist and seasoned vocalist and has performed in a number of local bands in Central Oregon — most notably, Sisters-area favorite Dry Canyon Stampede. Worona has been playing music since she was 6 years old. Her father being a classical musician, she picked up the violin and also grew up singing and touring with vocal groups in college.

In 2012, Worona played with Bend-based Broken Down Guitars, where she had her first experience with recording when the band won a battle-of-the-bands competition and earned a recording opportunity. After playing for a few years with them, Worona joined country cover band Dry Canyon Stampede, who she’s been playing with for the past five years. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and all gigs being canceled, Worona had the extra time to work on an album.

“I went back to older songs I wrote, and I had never had the time to record them until now. I figured now would be the time to pull the plug and do it,” said Worona.

During this time, she says she has been going crazy without playing music out and being on stage.

“I miss being on stage and playing and not having music, so I decided to take the time to record,” she said.

Worona doesn’t necessarily think her writing comes from inspiration.

“I write songs to digest life and I keep journals, so a lot of the material comes from life experience,” she said.

When Worona sits down to write a song in an evening, she flips through old journal entries and goes back two or three years in time to revisit entries.

“I often look back on them with a new perspective and different point of view,” she said.

The title track, “Between the Lines,” came from an entry she had done in a lined journal.

“I had never written in a journal with lines, so I was writing about how I was writing between the lines and then looked back on it later and thought it would be a good song,” she said.

Worona has a number of local musicians assisting her on the production of the album. Worona is playing rhythm guitar and fiddle and handling lead vocals. Mike Biggers of Sisters, a fellow Dry Canyon Stampede member, is assisting on acoustic, electric, and bass guitar. She is also working with Shireen Amini, a Bend percussionist.

Jim Goodwin, a Sisters musician, is playing saxophone and keyboards, and is helping to produce the album. Stacie Johnson, Worona’s former Broken Down Guitars bandmate, is singing harmonies and background vocals.

So far, Worona has done one recording weekend last month o and is set to do the rest of the first half now.

She is raising funds to finish the second half of the album in the spring.

“I am hoping for a July release, but there is no rush,” she said.

Worona, being associated with Dry Canyon Stampede who typically does country covers, emphasizes that this album “has a more Americana/pop vibe and [is] not as country as Dry Canyon.”

“There is a lot of fun, happy singalong music. I want to bring joy in a dark time,” said Worona.

The community can contribute to the Indiegogo campaign through the link below. The funds raised will go toward production and recording, as well as producing physical CDs.

“I think there is something nostalgic about physical CDs,” Warona said.

Her goal is to raise $12,000 and the campaign runs until the end of March.

“You can choose to just make a donation, but there are some perks listed for larger donors,” she said.

The album, being released hopefully in the summer, is titled “Between the Lines,” and will contain 10 tracks of Worona’s original music.

To contribute to Worona’s Indiegogo campaign, visit www.indiegogo.com/projects/between-the-lines-lp-lilli-worona#/.