INDIE SINGER/SONGWRITER, SHELITA BURKE, CREATES A POETIC URBAN POP/EDM FUSION ON HER NEW EP ‘ FIVE’
The name of Shelita Burke’s 2015 debut EP proved truly prophetic, as fans all over the world were Transfixed by the hard working, well traveled multi-talented performer. The collection was the #14 best-selling singer-songwriter album on Amazon, and NPR Music – which played her song “Swim” regularly – named her “An Artist To Watch” at SXSW 2016. She extended her long history of touring throughout the U.S. and Europe, performing at the Iceland Airwaves Festival, the Youbloom Festivals in Los Angeles, Dublin and Paris and the Northwest Folklife Festival in her home town of Seattle. She also headlined East Coast (Florida, Boston, NY) and West Coast (L.A., Seattle) tours. Previous, self-generated world tours have taken her from France, Morocco and England to Ireland, Canada, Germany, Japan and Wales.
Over the past two years the Seattle raised singer/songwriter has become a true musical citizen of the world, bringing her fresh sound and what she dubs “emotional art music” on self-generated world tours that hit France, Morocco, England, Ireland, Canada, Germany, Iceland, Japan, and Wales. Closer to home, in between overseas stints, she’s also done Seattle to NYC tours. Her debut EP Transfixed was released in November 2015 and reached #14 Best selling album on Amazon. Keep in mind, this kind of success was completely organic, built one fan at a time, one show at a time.
A handful of years after she began busking on the streets of Seattle and launched her career playing in clubs, Shelita found a unique songwriting voice to help her tackle the wide range of emotions that came with becoming an adult in an increasingly complex life. While penning lyrics that reflected her deepening experiences, she created a sound which incorporated her fascination with polyrhythms and the Middle Eastern scale – fusing them with the traditional Western scale to create dynamic textures. Her discovery of a unique perceptual phenomenon called Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response (ASMR) – essentially a pleasurable, tingling “brain tickle” effect – led her to incorporate unique vocal runs that added what she calls “brain orgasms” to her songs. Shelita cites Joni Mitchell as an influence, and these runs are a bit like the high pitch vocalizing the legendary singer is known for.
“I created these songs while going through all of these feelings personally, Sometimes watch people in love acting a certain way and you think you understand what it’s all about – and then it happens to you and you’re forced to completely reassess everything you ever thought about love”.
I loved writing and recording Five because I was writing from a place of wondering what the core values were that make all human beings the same – and which of those values I could connect to in my own self. On the music side, I come from a jazz-folk background and it was immensely exciting to start out with a whole new vision here and write pop songs. Working with Bellringer was an amazing experience whose magic is really hard to describe, and it was exciting to have the opportunity to stretch my previous boundaries as an artist every day.”
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