If you take a liking to 90s/2000s pop and classic rock music, listen up. As today’s radio hits are probably not your cup of tea, and maybe the few songs that are are vastly overplayed, it’s time for a new artist to liven up your playlist. Up-and-coming singer/songwriter Shayna Leigh has a voice similar to Alanis Morissette and Avril Lavigne with the songwriting skills and likability of 70s songwriters.
First take a listen to her single “Typhoon”. Once you’re hooked, read on to learn more about this talented artist.
Q&A with Shayna Leigh
What would you say are the dominant themes of your debut album “Drive”?
I didn’t set out to write a full album with “Drive”. I worked on each of the songs independently, and then one day realized that I had the makings of a complete album in my lap! Even with that there are definitely themes that emerged, I think, because the songs are reflective of what I was going through/am going through in my life. To me, this is an album about growing up and growing into the person you want to be. It’s about the uncertainty of life out there in the real world when you’re out of school and on your own- when the training wheels are off, and you’ve got to figure it out! I think this is an important story and I am really excited to be a part of the telling of it.
In ways can we see the influences of your primary influences, The Beatles and Carole King? Would you say you bring their rhythmic elements, their songwriting style, or their orchestration?
Carole King and The Beatles are icons! I honestly feel lucky to even be mentioned in the same sentence as them. I think the musical influence concept is a tricky one because one of the most important things about being and becoming an artist is finding your own voice, the way you naturally sing and interpret. I think my influences are ultimately those artists that I am a fan of- those artists whose impact has reached my soul, my instincts. I love The Beatles for their rhythmic style, the smoothness of their sound and the versatility of their messages. I love Carole King for her storytelling and her clean and pure arrangements that let the songs speak for themselves.
You consider yourself to be a storyteller. Where are you most in your element? Where do you find yourself writing the most?
I honestly think I am most in my element when I am on the stage because that’s when the stories are told. Being a storyteller to me is as much about performing your songs, sharing your soul with an audience when you sing, as it is about writing a great song. I do a lot of co-writing, so a lot of the actual writing for me occurs in the studio. That being said, I do a ton of journaling and free writing pretty much wherever I am. I randomly have found I do a lot of writing on airplanes.