Sheila : new cd : Brief Strop : Wake : Songs from the Bardo : other : gallery

Sheila’s first brush with fame was when she streaked into public consciousness in an act of radical self exposure. Live at a Lords cricket match between England and Australia at the Ashes in 1989 she did naked cartwheels propelling herself onto the front pages of the tabloids in Britain and much of the commonwealth.

She was 19 and a few months later she went to stay with a friend in LA and didn’t go home. No one had even heard of A levels. Fantastic.

She has released three critically acclaimed albums: Brief Strop (1999), Wake (2002), and Songs From the Bardo (2009). In each album, smattered between songs of desire and yearning, are rousing feminist fantasies, testimonies to the failure of war, commentaries on the ridiculousness of worldwide chest-beating, anthems to the freedom gained if we just rewrote our collective mythology, and the personal eternal journey to rewrite one's own.

Lyrically unique, she is propelled by a singular voice that is alternately confronting and seductive, that exudes the ecstatic cool of a trumpet player, roaring and purring, with a dynamic range capable of reaching you in the top balcony and bringing you closer than your neck vein.

Hollywood records distributed her first, and it made it to the US college Top Ten Billboard chart in 2000. The track ‘Fallen for you’ is featured in the film and on the soundtrack of High Fidelity

Her second record ‘Wake’ was a studio album where she collaborated with a team including Glen Ballard, Jez Colin, Mike Elezondo, and Ozomatli. She toured extensively, opening for KD Lang, and playing her song ‘Faith,’ which hit the Billboard top 40, on the Tonight show with Jay Leno.

Her third, ‘Songs from the Bardo’ was a medley a few years in the making, after having a daughter-- it was back to the home studio scene, self- written, played, engineered and produced, mostly.

Having moved thro the corporate music world and kept her integrity intact, Sheila is currently mixing a new body of work, “All of Nature” in which she connects what’s completely personal to what’s not limited in time at all.

For this task she conjured up a Superband calling upon the skills of Kaveh Rastegar-- standup bass (with John Legend), Jebin Bruni-- keys (with Meshell Ndegeocello), Chris Bruce on guitar (also Meshell Ndegeocello.), Danny Frankel on drums (with Fiona Apple) and Mitch Forman on piano (with Wayne Shorter). Engineered by Pete Min, who has also recorded and mixed Meshell’s last two records.

Defying genre, the record also dips into the literary arena, with each lyric being accompanied by an additional commentary, she petitions us to quarry, contemplate, and take action to blow through the masks and the conditions behind the conditions. To expose ourselves to ourselves and solve all the world's problems right now. Because actually it would be quite simple to do so.

All of her albums are available on iTunes and her new record will be cooked and ready... October 15 2015?


2002 LA Times
2002 In Music We Trust