BASHIYRA ‘The Voice’ Singer/Songwriter,
Experience the seductive and dulcet tones of songstress Bashiyra, remarkably emotive vocals, gifted with a sensational breath of vision.
Where was your first live performance?
I suppose you could say my first public performance was really at primary school, followed by performances in London (UK) in places like ‘The Apollo’ and ‘The Albany Theatre’.
You performed as background vocalist for artistes such as Patti Labelle, Diana Ross and Michael Bolton how did you managed to land these opportunities?
The opportunity to work with such esteemed artists came about by a self-funded vocal agency set up by two of my friends who were also vocalists. They did their industry homework and recruited a concise selection of quality singers that included me and as a highly cohesive vocal syndicate we attracted singing assignments of this calibre.
Did you ever consider doing anything else other than being a singer/songwriter?
I studied full time at college with a view of becoming a solicitor. Even though singing and music was always my first career choice, after a discussion with my grandmother, I chose to study Law. After gaining my A Level’s in English, Law and Sociology I took a year out before embarking on what would have been my law degree. The year out was to focus on my music which to my delight took off, landing me a Top 10 hit on my first single release, so I never got the chance to follow through on starting my degree which would have led to my second occupational choice of becoming a solicitor.
What was the first song you wrote about?
Song-writing was really born out of my love for poetry as a child and poetry is still something that I do. I’ve always been a writer and the first song I wrote was called ‘Baby Baby’. It’s about a girl telling a guy “Hey I know you want me, so come and get me!”….
Has being a singer/songwriter lived up to your expectations?
Creatively yes, it has been a serious pleasure zone. Amplified more so, when I see the impact on my fans, supporters, family and friends. There’s nothing quite like that feeling and hearing all about the positive effects of my music on its listeners.
Is there anything you don’t like about being a singer/songwriter?
I guess just the expectation from some people that I’ll sing/perform and or write for free. My gift is my occupation!
Did you ever wonder if you’d made the right career choice?
Yes, the path of a music career is not an easy one. There are many peaks/mountain tops experiences as well as the valley ones! And yes I have periodically reflected on how my life could’ve been if I didn’t take that year out and actually went on ahead and studied for my law degree. However ultimately, I actively acknowledge, that my first chosen career path of music and song was and is the right choice for me.
What lessons has the music industry taught you so far?
Where do I start? In a nutshell, I would say this: understand the business; it is not called the music business for niceties, do your homework, be prepared and be in the know about everything concerning your business and work with people who are passionate about your vision! Enthusiasm goes a long way!
You have received a number of Awards – what are they for?
Winner of the Black Women in the Arts Aspiring Black Female Singer Award, Winner 2005 and 2011, Soul Survivors Best UK Soul Artist 2010, Nina Simone Award Winner and Soul Baby Live Award Winner 2011
Why are these Awards important to you?
It’s public recognition of my life‘s creative works to date, and that I’ve been acknowledged by my peers and contemporaries in the industry, as well as my fans and that my work more specifically is respected. This is very important. It enhances my creative growth and accomplishments in my chosen field. Each award has a special place in my heart. They are a personification of my personal achievements which is something that I am very proud off.
Between 1993 you recorded and released “I Will Always Love You” a Reggae single with Jet Star. It ranked at NO: 9 in Jet Star Reggae Distribution Chart was this a surprise for you?
Yes ‘I Will Always Love You’ charting at No: 9 was such a delightful surprise and a very special moment in my career! It was my first official release as a solo artist and it charted Top 10. I was and still am super pleased about that achievement!
You have released a number of tracks ‘Mystified, ‘Give Me A Little More Time’, Got To Get Your Love’ - why did you not do an Album before now?
As an Independent Artist I have the creative freedom to choose at given periods, between the releases of an album, EP, single or collaborative feature releases. Decisions are always offset against a corresponding financial budget. The period of time when the above singles were being released was very much a featured collaborative approach in terms of the energy around and my focus however whilst this was all going in the forefront, my debut album ‘Thought You Knew’ was actually being shaped and defined in the background.
More about BASHIYRA
BASHIYRA live PA at: The London Yacht Members Club on the River Thames, Feb 21st 2013.
Ticket Link: http://elin-events-extravaganza.eventbrite.co.uk/
BASHIYRA live with full band at: The Islington Assembly Hall, London, Feb 25th 2013, where she’ll be UK support for Marsha Ambrosius (formerly of Floetry)
BASHIYRA - Live PA - Soul Shack 15th Birthday Bash March 16th PA - FB Event Link
BASHIYRA - Online
To purchase Material by BASHIYRA: