Music Monday: Musician Kaela Sinclair

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She’s a musical dream. The melodies, the lyrics, the vocals, and many of the instrumentals are all her own. Meet Kaela Sinclair, a 23 year old indie musician from Denton, Texas who is making tidal waves in the industry. Kaela infuses her tracks with depth and layers yet still manages to exude a restorative simplicity. I think you readers will appreciate this unique sound so much that you’ll feel you can literally inhale it deep into your lungs like a breath of fresh air.  Enjoy.

What is your name?

Kaela Sinclair

Describe your music style to our readers.

My music has been described as alternative indie pop with a cinematic, dreamy quality. I like to think that my songs lay in the happy place between mainstream and underground music. I enjoy writing complex chord progressions, but I think melodies should be natural and easy to grab onto. My lyrical style tends to be introspective and sometimes philosophical, but relationships and romantic endeavors certainly find their way into my songs as well.

How and why did you become a musician? Are you full-time?

I am a full-time musician. When I’m not writing, recording, or performing my original music, I’m teaching private music lessons and doing all sorts of paying gigs in a variety of styles. I’ve been playing music since a very young age. My parents tell me I started singing around the same time I started talking. A few years later, I started learning piano on an old upright we had in the house, and I started writing songs shortly after that. I’ve come a long way since then, having put in years of musical training and study.

What inspires you?

I’m very inspired by the works of other musicians. I’m particularly fond of Impressionist and Romantic classical music. The piano music of Debussy and Chopin always makes me want to write. I also listen to a lot of modern bands and singers. There are too many to name in full, but my current favorites are Poliça, Local Natives, Oh Land, and Bombay Bicycle Club. Of course, I’m inspired by real life experiences too – good and bad, personal and universal.

Describe a typical day.

On a typical day, I wake up later than most people (to my credit, musicians’ schedules tend to be shifted much later). I get up, work on emails, and run errands. If it’s a weekday I drive to work around 3pm and get home around 9pm or 10pm. I teach private music lessons, mostly to kids. I teach voice, piano, guitar, songwriting, and music theory. Nighttime is my creative time. That’s when I practice, write, and continue to take care of what I call “business chores” (emails, social media, booking, etc.) Sometime after midnight I might do something relaxing like listen to music, watch TV, or read a book. On the weekend (Thursday, Friday, Saturday) I am typically performing music somewhere in the Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex. The gigs can start around 8 or 9pm, and can end as late as 3am. My life is really busy, but I’m so glad I get to make my living doing music.

What are 3 fun things we should know about you?

I was homeschooled for a long time. A lot of my early childhood was spent hanging out with my Mom and my brothers. I credit homeschool with my love of reading. It might have also contributed to some of the social awkwardness I exhibited in high school, but hey, who wasn’t a little awkward in high school? Speaking of reading, I’m almost finished with the very long Game of Thrones book series. It’s thousands of pages of fantastical, grown-up fun. I love it. I also love lemons. I mean, I LOVE lemons. I eat them by themselves and I put lemon juice on everything. Oh, and I’m left-handed!

What advice would you give to other musicians?

Practice. Practice hard. Spend time learning the ins and outs of your instrument and of the theory of music. Don’t stop. I’ve already seen a lot of talented musicians quit music and take day jobs in unrelated fields. If having a family is a priority, that’s fine, but if you want to have a musical career, you have to keep going. It’s not the quickest or the surest road to financial security, so you have to really be okay with some shaky times, but it’s worth it if you love it!

Connect With Her

There are many ways to stay updated on my music! For shows, news, music, videos, and other updates ‘like’ me on Facebook and ‘follow’ me on Twitter! Download my brand new album on Bandcamp and iTunes.

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Listen and Download 

My debut LP, Sun & Mirror, was released October 8th. It was produced by myself and drummer McKenzie Smith (Midlake, St. Vincent, Regina Spektor, Sarah Jaffe) at Redwood Studios in Denton, TX. It was called “…one of the best albums to emerge from the DFW area thus far in 2013.” by DFW.com. You can hear the album and purchase it at www.kaelasinclair.bandcamp.com and on iTunes!

Music Monday: Miss Wensday

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For today’s Music Monday, we are delighted to have Miss Wensday & The Cotillions, a vintage jazz band out of Providence, Rhode Island. Her style, in both voice and dress,  is a unique combination soulful/jazz/pin-up with a twist of sexy/edgy/rocker prompting Alice Cooper to refer to her as “the other girl next door.” And that’s not all.  The talented Miss Wensday also acts, writes music, teaches voice and theatre, performs wedding ceremonies as an ordained minister, and fights domestic violence by working with victims of abuse. Hear her music.

Describe your music style to our readers.

My band is called Miss Wensday & The Cotillions, and we are a vintage jazz band! We specialize in music from the 1920s-1950s, but we like to throw in some surprises, too. Sometimes a gal just wants to sing Sly and the Family Stone. My love of jazz is due to my parent’s influence and the direction of my first voice teacher. Besides singing it, I always loved to listen to it, especially Ella Fitzgerald, Nina Simone, and Louis.

How and why did you become a musician? Are you full-time?

I’ve been singing and acting since I was 5 and was in a jazz band from 8th grade through high school. I got a BFA in Drama from NYU and when I moved back to Providence 10 years later, I started singing with a jazz band. I moved to Phoenix briefly to record an album of original music, and the album called “Torch Rock” was on the Grammy ballot in several categories including “album of the year” and “best blues vocal.” No matter what I do, and I do a lot of diverse projects, I always come back to jazz, it’s where my soul is.  I teach voice and theatre during the day, and it’s the best day job ever! I mostly work with children but have some adult students, too!

What inspires you?

The relationship between the performer, the material and the audience. I tell my students a song is not worth singing unless you feel it.

Describe a typical day.

I wake up, need coffee immediately, feed my dogs and go outside with them, take pictures of my sleeping boyfriend, handle my Miss Wensday Music business (the name of my company that blankets all my endeavors), teach classes and/or lessons, and if I’m lucky I have a gig at night!

What are your fondest musical memories?

My unauthorized duet with Alice Cooper onstage at his Christmas Pudding show in 2006, singing the entire score of “Jesus Christ Superstar” during free periods in high school with my friend Matt Perri, and giving “living room concerts” at my parent’s house, mostly just for my parents, my number one fans!

What advice would you give to other musicians?

If you’re in it for the money you are in the wrong profession! If you have no emotional connection to your music, just stop.

How can our readers contact you? 

Facebook for Wensday

Facebook for Miss Wensday & The Cotillions

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