For Brooklyn-based modern folk duo emily + shawn, the stuff in life that makes a difference requires heavy lifting, and careful attention to detail. Their music is an authentic reflection of their lives. emily + shawn’s songs are informed by their ethics, their myriad of experiences and interests, and their day to day interactions, which they characterize sweetly as “healthy clashes.”
They just released their new acoustic folk ballad about finding love and connection in the smaller moments that usually get forgotten. It’s a tonal departure from their previous singles, but just as beautiful. It has a strong Mumford and Sons meets The Lumineers with an Ingrid Michaelson undertone.
“’you and i’ is a song we wrote about our life as both a music duo and as a couple,” shares the duo. “Memories of living in New York City are present throughout, and the pensive chord progression gives the listener an element of nostalgia we tried to create lyrically. We produced this with David Baron of The Lumineers and wanted to emulate their raw, stripped-down feeling within the folk-rock genre.”
Singer, songwriter, and musician KALEN has become a Brooklyn mainstay during residencies at Alligator Lounge and Spike Hill, performing high-kicks and jumping off amps in kinetic kinship with the audience. She began by hauling her keyboard and amp up and down Bedford Ave, forging a sound rooted in soul, funk and electronic music.
Getting set to release her newest EP, Silence Like Sirens, her electro pop single “Phoenix” bounces with an anthem like piano hook and a chorus that elevates the overall message of redemption and healing. The chorus is bound the get stuck in your head as you find yourself singing it throughout the day. It’s reminiscent of Madonna, both in her vocals and pop musical style.
“Phoenix” was named after a friend’s second child after losing her first. “I couldn’t fathom the pain they went through. Now, as a mother myself, it’s even more difficult to imagine,” shares KALEN. “I love the way the bridge really came to life on this one with that rhythm section! The most magical thing that happened on this song, though, was the choir that sang on the choruses! Maggie Collier arranged sick BVs and led 6 incredible singers. I was 8 months pregnant and the world was about to shut down, but we didn’t quite know it yet. We were all talking about whether or not we should hug goodbye (which we did).”
She’s performed at Brooklyn Bowl, Rough Trade, & Joe’s Pub, DC9 (Washington D.C.) and Hotel Café & The Mint (LA). During the pandemic, KALEN brought us into her world streaming her moody tunes in late night solo sessions. Performing live again KALEN tailors each performance (and the accompanying visuals) to the specific site and space, from analog slide projectors coupled with poetry and acoustic bands in Brownstoner salons to projection mapping and thumping tracks with a full electric band on stages around NYC.
Brooklyn based singer-songwriter Elizabeth P.W. has a new single out now called “Brooklyn.”
A song packed with meaning, “Brooklyn” came to Elizabeth suddenly after the death of her aunt in Manhattan who was involved in a car accident:
“With my Aunt Amy´s death, I had a sudden realization: after over 100 years of Brooklyn being the hub of our family, I was the last living person in the Phillipson family who remained. The chorus of the song popped into my head one day and the rest of the song came soon after.”
With the Americana folk chorus and key instrumental violin and accordion solos, this song is memorable and full of emotion. As a multi-instrumentalist, Elizabeth´s music has been nominated for various composer awards as well as being premiered in films at Tribeca Film Festival, DOC NYC and more.
“Brooklyn” combines various synth sounds with organic instruments like the folk violin to create her signature sound.
Elizabeth released her debut folk album “Haven´t Found It” back in 2019, to much critical acclaim and she has been busy ever since composing music for film scores such as the 2021 NAACP Image Award nominated short film “Gets Good Light”.
Her music influences include Fleetwood Mac, Jackson Browne and Glen Campbell. With such an eclectic sound and great musical talent for both songwriting and performing, we can´t wait to hear more of Elizabeth´s music both on screen and future single releases.
Singer/songwriter Ariel Arbisser’s music and performances make her audiences feel seen, heard, and offers a unique glimpse into how she experiences the highs and lows of the world. Her music is raw and passionate, a brand of pop that you won’t find in other artists.
She just released her new electro-pop single, with a hint of funk, “Rabbit Hole,” the follow up single to her last release “Bloodshed.” “The core of this song came to me last year and it’s had a chokehold on me since,” shares Ariel. “Thematically there’s some crossover, but ‘Rabbit Hole’ comes down from the rage-filled fever pitch of ‘Bloodshed’ to this which is a more restrained, sexy, slow-burn. Things haven’t settled yet. The ‘dark side’ is still enticing, maybe even more comfortable than it was before. The full song sonically is true, addictive journey downward.”
“Rabbit Hole” has a contemporary meets retro electro-pop sound, almost like a Sara Bareilles meets Harry Styles. Her voice carries such strength, similar to an Alice Russell or Brandi Carlile, or even an Adele.
Through her lens as a white, Jewish, queer woman, she is transparent when learning out loud and participates in ongoing conversations about mental health, body neutrality, sex positivity, social and racial justice, LGBTQ rights, and more. In a world that’s dangerous for far too many and uncomfortable for almost everyone, she creates a touchstone by creating art, appreciating simple pleasures, and taking dedicated and intentional risks for love.
“With love comes inevitable pain– miscommunication, betrayal, heartache, loss… Allowing yourself to be vulnerable enough to experience love, however briefly, is brave. And it’s worth it in the end.”
Celia Berk is an award-winning vocalist whose recordings have attracted listeners around the world. She has made memorable appearances at Carnegie Hall, Jazz At Lincoln Center, Birdland Theater, The Town Hall and the National Arts Club. Celia has been praised by some of the most prominent champions of The Great American Songbook.
She just released of her widely anticipated third album, Now That I Have Everything. Arranger/pianist Tedd Firth brings a Nat King Cole Trio feel to the recording, which explores the ways we try – successfully and unsuccessfully – to connect our heart to someone else’s. Co-Produced by Tony and Grammy Award-winning sound designer Scott Lehrer, it features the kinds of hidden gems by great songwriters that are Celia’s trademark. Many of those songs were featured in COMES LOVE, a 2019 show Celia created with pianist Sean Gough.
In his Liner Notes, author and journalist Will Friedwald writes, “Celia Berk makes us realize, in a way few singers can, that love is, in fact, never ever the same.”
When asked about the album, Celia says, “The story of this album really begins and ends with my friend Debbi Bush Whiting, daughter of Margaret Whiting and granddaughter of Richard Whiting. She had given me recordings of her mother’s appearances on a radio show, including Irving Berlin’s NOW IT CAN BE TOLD. The premise of that song is that the real story of a great romance has yet to be written. As I listened, I asked myself, ‘So what exactly can now be told?’ And then I thought, ‘Oh, I’m going to do an album about love!’ So I set out to find songs about the ways we try – successfully and unsuccessfully – to connect our heart to someone else’s.”
The songs cascade from a jazz silhouette of toe tapping to rain on a rooftop. This album is like sipping a nice cup of tea on a lazy Sunday afternoon. It encompasses the Broadway jazz element all the way down to songs reminiscent of Moon River. “Boum!” Is a fun loving dance number that incorporates feelings from your head to your heart and personifies the emotions. “Right as the Rain” brings a melancholy and somber feeling that captivates the whole body. The title track “Now That I Have Everything” dances on the piano keys and takes the center stage of the whole album in this show stopping number.
Celia debuted her new cabaret show, ON MY WAY TO YOU: Improbable Stories That Inspired An Unlikely Path, directed by Mark Nadler with music direction by Tedd Firth. Marilyn Lester of Theater Pizzazz called it “An enchanting show, executed with abundant smarts, humor and grace, and terrific choices of music known and unknown.”
Celia’s accolades include the album MANHATTAN SERENADE in which she received the 2017 LaMott Friedman Award. It was arranged and conducted by Alex Rybeck and co-produced by Scott Lehrer, the team behind her debut album YOU CAN’T RUSH SPRING. Lyricist David Zippel (whose “The Broadway Song” written with Cy Coleman received its first commercial recording) wrote in the album notes, “A tribute to her hometown, this collection is anything but renditions of the obvious New York songs. MANHATTAN SERENADE is curated: a connoisseur’s compilation of one exquisite, undiscovered musical gem after another.” YOU CAN’T RUSH SPRING and Celia’s solo cabaret debut, directed by Jeff Harnar, earned Celia a 2015 Bistro Award: Vocalist; 2015 MAC Award: New York Debut – Female; 2015 BroadwayWorld Award for Best New York Cabaret Debut; and The 2015 Margaret Whiting Award.
We have no doubt that “Now That I Have Everything” will follow suit brining about awards and notoriety to the ever so talented soul that is Celia Berk.
Based in New York, Kris “Halo” Pierce is a multi-award winning artist, also music producer, who has had his music played at MTV, Viacom Media Networks, Sony Creative and VH1, among other channels.
“AndOr” is a super laid back and chilled electro track, with synths and distant other-worldly beats:
“This track is pretty much about Cognitive Dissonance. It´s a laid back beat with the familiar electric piano stabs and synco-bass from the Chill Out pages.”
With influences like Massive Attack, his music truly stands out not only in the electronic genre, but also wider afield with trip hop, EDM and funk. It´s a pretty cool track that is both moody as well as soulful and danceable, and draws from ambient, goth and industrial music genres too.
Today, Kris “Halo” Pierce has announced his second solo album release called Artificial Breed, a darker and more eclectic collection of tracks that features remixes by Craig Joseph Huxtable, Seven Factor and more. The album´s lead single called “Midnight Dive” has been played more than 2 million times, including throughout major retail stores in the United States.
Kris´s musical aesthetics explore dreams, abstract other worlds and non linear lyrics:
“A lot of the times, if it sounds like it is a love song, it´s probably actually about music itself. I don´t like to write about people or situations I feel negative about.”
Kris is not only an acclaimed music artist, but also a sound engineer, audio technician for off-Broadway shows, as well as a studio whizz as he runs his own production company Halo Askew Entertainment.