SHANNON BRYANT

 

 

 

Featured on CBC Radio Canada’s “Fresh Air”, as one of Mark Rheaume’s “Top Picks” for February, 2016.

 

Belle Estrela Music - California-based / Canadian born Shannon Bryant will fall into the good graces of pop music fans thanks to her 2016 CD Light. The CD combines a solid pop-rock groove with an almost saucy smooth jazz effect, even though it’s not jazz. Shannon’s all original sound is fully enhanced by solid musicanship all around, including some of the best studio cats and sound mixer Joe Chiccarelli, who gets an excellent studio sound on record. Best of all here are the solid toe-tapping pop hooks and Shannon’s smooth as silk vocals. Commenting on Light, Shannon adds, “My goal for Light and my music in general, is to heal the world from the inside out...to help illuminate our inner strength and light”. There is one cover here- a version of Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes” that could make Shannon of interest to the ex-genesis rocker. Pop fans will be delighted by Shannon Bryant’s catchy, pop-rock masterpiece.
-Music Web Express 3000

 

Shannon Bryant - Light  

De Canadese zangeres Shannon Bryant is al wat jaartjes actief in de wereld van de muziek. Met het album ' Light ' heeft zij wederom een mooi album opgenomen.

De muziek op het album kunnen we het best omschrijven als een combinatie van singer songwriter muziek met pop invloeden. De tien nummers op het album ademen een pure en intieme sfeer uit. De zangeres probeert met haar nummers en teksten een positieve bijdrage te leveren aan een wereld waarin we vele uitdagingen kennen. 

Belangrijkste themas zijn voor Shannon Bryant de liefde in de ruimste zin van het woord en schoonheid. 

Liefhebbers van rustige pop muziek kunnen hun hart op halen bij de helende muziek van de Canadese zangeres.

Met het album ' Light ' laat de zangeres zich weer van haar beste kant horen.
-Rudolf’s Music

 

Spreading “Light”: Radio and reviews help the new album by singer-songwriter Shannon Bryant capture hearts and minds

SAN FRANCISCO (24 March 2016): Even before Shannon Bryant’s “Light” was released, CBC Radio Canada’s “Fresh Air” made the ten-song singer-songwriter session mixed by multiple GRAMMY® winner Joe Chiccarelli (Jason Mraz, Alanis Morissette, U2, Elton John, Frank Zappa) a “Top Pick” for February. Midwest Record hailed the intimate collection issued on the Belle Estrela Music label as “one of the best confessional singer/songwriter sets,” a sentiment echoed by Exclusive Magazine’s emphatic confirmation “Yep, this album of tracks completely written and produced by Shannon Bryant is just that damn good.” 

As airplay for the “Light” album grows in March at commercial, NPR and college radio stations, the topical title track confronting guns and domestic violence will air throughout April on Women of Substance Radio’s “Music with a Conscience” as well as be programmed on an episode of the Women of Substance’s podcast, an award-winning iTunes topper that highlights new independent music releases.  

Gracefully plying her expressive soprano voice, Bryant’s studies in philosophy inform her highly-personal lyrics on this, her third album. The London, Ontario native and longtime San Francisco resident communicates with candor and revealing slice-of-life poetry. For instance, “Fresh Air” host Mark Rheaume singled out “Milk & Honey” for a spotlight segment, a song memorializing Bryant’s late mother with a series of fond remembrances. On “Light,” contemplative ruminations about love, relationships, spiritual direction and empowering affirmations of self-worth and discovery are paired with alluring melodies – beautiful, pristine notes and harmonies that breathe life and color into Bryant’s stories. The acoustic accompaniment organically underscores her messages with several tracks benefitting from sparser instrumentation. Live strings throughout the proceedings add depth and lushness while ratcheting the emotion.

Bryant will perform music from “Light” at the Shelton Theater in San Francisco on May 15. In the meantime, the targeted national radio and press campaigns shall continue to illuminate the path for listeners to discover Bryant’s music. For more information, please visit www.ShannonBryant.com.
-Great Scott Productions PR



“S
hannon Bryant found a different way to put her philosophy degree to good use. Accompanying the singer-songwriter’s effervescent melodies and honeyed harmonies are philosophical ruminations on love, connection and intimacy that, like life itself, offer a balance of sunny optimism and hope along with inevitable bouts of pained heartbreak and disillusionment.

Ergo, here on the soprano songbird's third adult contemporary-acoustic pop album, Light, which will be released February 26th by Belle Estrela Music, the collection of ten quality, hugely personal tracks come together as if the fates had requested them. Yep, this album of tracks completely written and produced by Shannon Bryant is just that damn good.

1. Kind of Girl
2. '11th Hour'
3. 'Wide Open'
4. 'Light'
5. 'Milk & Honey'
6. 'Gold'
7. 'In Your Eyes'
8. 'Make Me Believe It’s Love'
9. 'Open Your Eyes'
10. '11th Hour Reprise'

The opening track, 'Kind Of Girl' is a lyrically shrugged resistance to a wayward ex and is a great way to set the tone for this album. That is expertly followed by the love song '11th Hour,' the perky playful bounce and flow of 'Wide Open' along next, and that is backed by both the skiffle drum back beat of the title track 'Light' (a track that poses probing questions in the face of gun and domestic violence, which in turn hints at finding safety and security in the spiritual), and then a track penned for her late mother, the beautiful summer sway of 'Milk & Honey.'

Bryant's gracefully, at times soaring voice keeps performing at its incredible best on the next track, 'Gold,' a cut that verbally searches for our inward joy (when it doesn't present itself as easily as we would have hoped for), and that is backed by the albums only cover track, a quite stunning version of Peter Gabriel's 'In Your Eyes.' A soft acoustic translation, nothing more than musical ambiance accompanying Bryant's precise vocals edge the song in, but then when the first (and stark) piano key strikes it awakens the song, thus allowing the sunlight to drift down and through the song, spreading warmth and love throughout its lyrics thereafter.

With multiple GRAMMY® winner Joe Chiccarelli (Jason Mraz, Alanis Morissette, U2, Elton John, Frank Zappa) having mixed this wonderful ten track album, next up is the delightful Brazilian jazz club appeal of 'Make Me Believe It's Love,' a track that showcases divinely Bryant's obvious love/passion for the culture and music, in general. It's then that the album comes to a close with both the gently rousing anthem of 'Open Your Eyes' (which actually sounds like an old Beatles track), and an '11th House Reprise.”
-Exclusive Magazine
 

“What Bryant delivers is one of the best confessional singer/songwriter sets...the lyrics are heartfelt and real, and the music and playing provides a sterling setting for  it all.”
- Midwest Records
 

Singer-songwriter Shannon Bryant shines a philosophical “Light” on new album, due February 26

SAN FRANCISCO (13 January 2016): Shannon Bryant found a different way to put her philosophy degree to good use. Accompanying the singer-songwriter’s effervescent melodies and honeyed harmonies are philosophical ruminations on love, connection and intimacy that, like life itself, offer a balance of sunny optimism and hope along with inevitable bouts of pained heartbreak and disillusionment. The soprano songbird wrote and produced her third adult contemporary-acoustic rock album, “Light,” which will be released February 26 by Belle Estrela Music and serviced to NPR, CMJ, Triple A and college radio stations and specialty shows for airplay. Multiple GRAMMY® winner Joe Chiccarelli (Jason Mraz, Alanis Morissette, U2, Elton John, Frank Zappa) mixed the ten-track set.         

Bryant opens her thought-provoking songbook on “Light” with the poetic piano-led beauty “Kind of Girl” on which she confesses analytically “I’m the kind of girl who sees meaning in everything” before detaching from the heartache by professing to see life like a play and deftly shifting the focus to life’s journey. Unafraid to display vulnerability, the mid-tempo lullaby “11th Hour” professes love through an enduring pledge with an honest slice-of-life acknowledgment of frustration and disappointment. Her gracefully soaring voice seems to skip with the glee of new found love on the celebratory “Wide Open.” As if ripped from the headlines, “Light” poses probing questions in the face of gun and domestic violence on the track rife with tension that hints at finding safety and security in the spiritual. Penned for her late mother, “Milk & Honey” is a gentle guitar-strummed singalong. Instead of aimless searching and fruitless pursuits that ultimately fail to provide lasting happiness, “Gold” points the search for joy inward. The disc’s lone cover is a haunting, atmospheric reading of Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes,” which suits Bryant’s angelic and expressive voice divinely. Revealing her affection for Brazilian jazz, she sublimely charters a sultry rhythm taking a sensual departure on the elegant “Make Me Believe It’s Love.” Revisiting an earlier tune that was used on the PBS series “Roadtrip Nation,” the rousing anthem “Open Your Eyes” advocates being present and making good choices along with an affirmation of loyalty. The entire set features live strings, but perhaps they pack the most potency on “11th Hour Reprise,” a stunningly, aching stripped down version that closes the record poignantly.                          

“My intention for the album was to be honest and intimate, and inspire human connection, love and beauty. My goal for ‘Light’ and my music in general, is to heal the world from the inside out - to help illuminate our inner strength and light,” said Bryant, a Canadian transplant from London, Ontario who will soon announce concert dates to support the album release in her adopted hometown of San Francisco. 

Bryant decided to pursue a career in music during a soul-searching backpacking trip in Dublin, Ireland where she landed a six-month stint performing in a piano bar. Upon her return to Canada, she continued honing her chops by joining a popular local band. Her self-titled solo debut disc was released in 2004 followed by 2007’s “Oceano,” the sophomore set that garnered national airplay throughout Canada as well as television placement for the single “Open Your Eyes.” Among her many prominent concert and festival performances in Ontario and the Bay Area is sharing the stage with legend Carlos Santana at a NARAS salute to the Grateful Dead’s Mickey Hart.

The songs contained on Bryant’s “Light” album are:

“Kind Of Girl”
“11th Hour”
“Wide Open”
“Light”
“Milk & Honey”
“Gold”
“In Your Eyes”
“Make Me Believe It’s Love”
“Open Your Eyes”
“11th Hour Reprise”

For more information, please visit www.ShannonBryant.com.

-Great Scott Productions PR

 

“Oceano makes "Top Picks of November 2007" on CBC Radio.”
Mark Rheaume, CBC Radio

“This CD is a soulful and intelligently delightful swim in an
exquisite vocal experience. I feel well and all smiley faced about the musicianship and sometimes poignant and therapeutic lyrics."
James Cervantes, KWVA-Eugene, OR

"Oceano is a warm breeze blowing up from Brazil - relaxed, effortless, and hip.
The songs recall the best of the 60's bossa nova movement.
Bryant imbues the songs with a modern touch in the production.” (3½ stars)
Les French, WMEB-Orono, ME

“Her calm and warm voice makes listening to her CD a nice Bossa experience. The interesting Indian touch of track 3 “Born Innocent” immediately proves how great Shannon’s musical range and skills are. Of course with track 5, the real Bossa comes out and one can enjoy the joyful sound even more. Just get this CD. You will love it more and more every time.”
Joost Van Steen, Jazz & Blues Tour Radio - The Netherlands

Embracing the essence of the bossa nova, Shannon Bryant’s melodies and lyrics sway like warm breezes and gentle, tropical waves”.
Sandra Klein, Marin Independent Journal
 

Women’s Radio
October 9, 2009
By Brian Ball, Music Editor

Imagine yourself standing at the edge of the world—amidst crashing waves and cooing gulls, feeling enchanted and free. Now imagine if you could just switch this scenario on at any given time. That is exactly what happened when we pressed play on Shannon Bryant’s 2007 release, Oceano. In this intimate fusion of jazz, pop and adult contemporary styles, Ms. Bryant takes the listener to the shores of the human soul for a spiritual awakening unlike any other.

One of our favorite songs on Oceano is the poetic and enlightening song, “Born Innocent”, which fills the room with an Eastern vibe similar to Ravi Shankar (think George Harrison of the Beatles in the 60’s) and offers an underlying and unspoken infinite knowledge found through meditation or sensory deprivation.

Another notable song is “Little Samba”, in which Shannon creatively demonstrates her background in Brazilin and Latin jazz. The notes seem to jump right off of the disc and begin to dance around the listener in a charming and playful manner. Shannon’s good-humored vocals speak of the way music is able to magically take hold of her while sitting in front of a piano and playing her “little samba”.

In “More of Who You Are”, Shannon brings a dark and mysterious vibe to the album with tight percussion and descending lyrics. “Go down into the well / drown with me / dissolve all your defenses / unlock the fences for me” she sings, as the listener has no choice but to surrender to this epic sound.

Closing out Oceano, Shannon brings an enchanting and foreboding element to her music with “Fragile Leaf Lullaby”. Cradling the listener like a newborn babe and offering intimate lines like, “I’ll rock you oh so softly / I’ll stroke you oh so gently / I’ll treat you like a fragile leaf”, this extraordinary indie artist tells a story of all the beauty that is to come—both in the world at large and in her own musical journey.

“On her 2007 release, Oceano, Shannon Bryant offers a tender tale of incredible voyages that course from familiar waters of the heart to distant shores of the mind.”

London Free Press
Bryant back home
Thu, October 2, 2008
The California girl returns to her London roots to play Aeolian Hall tomorrow
By
JAMES REANEY

The only samba-singing Brescia philosophy grad who has shared the stage with Carlos Santana has her own personal homecoming tomorrow.

Shannon Bryant plays London for the first time in about eight years at Aeolian Hall tomorrow at 8 p.m. "It's a little bit of a homecoming. I have a lot of friends and family coming out," says Bryant, a Lord Dorchester secondary school grad.

The singer and songwriter moved to San Francisco in 2000. Since then, she has often returned to visit her parents, who live in Dorchester, and other family members who live in London. Bryant admits to asking herself why it took so long to play a concert during a visit.

The answer, she has decided, is that her full-length album Oceano is out this time around. "Everything is in place at the right time," she says.

The self-produced Oceano's songs are all originals. They blend Brazilian, Eastern, pop and jazz rhythms with Bryant's vocals.

Her words on Oceano often reflect the spiritual and inner concerns that look back to her days studying philosophy at Brescia University College.

"It is serving me. I didn't know what I was going to do with it at the time," she says of her degree. "I don't like to say 'messages.' It sounds preachy," she says of the meaning and spiritual reflections to be found in her words. "It really just comes from my own experience . . . I'm getting the message and I'm just singing about it."

Bryant began writing songs before the voyage to Oceano. One of them, Little Samba, was co-written with a London songwriter. "I wrote it with Steve Hardy in London here -- it's always been a favourite of people," she says of Little Samba. "It was one that's always fun. I'll do it for sure."

Hardy and Bryant shared melodies and lyrics while creating their samba, she says. "He was always so good at the chords, the music element."

Other songs from Oceano are sure to join Little Samba at Aeolian Hall when Bryant and her group take the stage. Travelling from the Bay area is bassist Mark Armenta.

Joining the two San Franciscans are London-tied pianist Steve Holowitz, trumpet player Paul Stevenson and drummer Richard Brisco. Earlier in their careers, Stevenson recorded with Bryant on For All I Know, a performance that is on Oceano.

Bryant's music combines elements of jazz, world and pop. She chooses the term "adult contemporary" to describe it. "It's not the kind of pop where it's a lot of guitar-based rocking pop."

By any name, her music has its roots in the Forest City. Bryant has family ties to Guy Lombardo's Royal Canadians. Lombardo guitarist Francis (Muff) Henry was her grandmother's cousin.

Her first band was an 11-piece R&B group, the Midnight Soul Revue, an act modelled on the band and music in the film The Commitments.

She also sang with Margaritaville -- Spirit of the Keys, a seven-member London band which paid tribute to Jimmy Buffett and the music of the islands.

In the same era, Bryant's love of Brazilian and Latin music was strong enough to win her a Sunfest-tied gig in her London days. Her love for those melodies and rhythms continues now that she's in California.

Bryant's California adventures include a close encounter with legendary guitarist Santana, who brought Latin rhythms to rock four decades ago.

In March, 2004 Shannon headed to the San Francisco chapter of the Recording Academy with her demo and became a member. The same day, she was selected to perform with Santana in a tribute to the Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart.

"I piped up and said, 'I can sing,' " she says. "I'm singing lead for the Mickey Hart song which was Fire on the Mountain -- I had to memorize these words," she says.

There was talk Sammy Hagar would be the guitarist. "It turned out be Carlos Santana and it was amazing," Bryant says.

IF YOU GO
What: Concert by former Londoner Shannon Bryant, an "adult contemporary" singer and songwriter.
When: Tomorrow, 8 p.m.
Where: Aeolian Hall, 795 Dundas St. (at Rectory)
Tickets: $22 in advance, $25 at the door. Visit aeolianhall.ca or call 519-672-7950
 

 Les French, WMEB-Orono, ME
"Oceano is a warm breeze blowing up from Brazil - relaxed, effortless, and hip. The songs recall the best of the 60's bossa nova movement. Bryant imbues the songs with a modern touch in the production. This is an album that will appeal to fans of Latin jazz and Brazilian music. RIYL: Bebel Gilberto (3½ stars)"
 

Marin Independent Journal

IJ Weekend: Shannon Bryant Band offers sounds of love
Sandra Klein
Article Launched: 02/06/2007 07:32:55 PM PST

Embracing the essence of the bossa nova, Shannon Bryant's melodies and lyrics sway like warm breezes and gentle, tropical waves.

The perfect Valentine's Day warm-up session, "It's About Love" will take the audience on a musical journey of self-discovery and love Friday night at the Larkspur Cafe Theatre. Through contemporary pop and world music and jazz, along with dance and poetry by 13th century Sufi poet Rumi and passages from "Tao Te Ching" author Lao Tzu, the show explores the universal themes of the human conditions of love, fear, isolation, connection and celebration.
"The dancers tell a story of a love relationship and take the songs to a deeper level," says Bryant, singer and creator of the Shannon Bryant Band. "

The show starts off dreamily and mystically with the opening pieces, 'It's Love' and 'Born Innocent' and then shifts to contemporary pop and gospel and to reggae, bossa nova and samba."

Mark Armenta, who plays bass in the band, believes Bryant's inspiration might be connected to the birth of her baby last year.
"To me, this is partly an expression of what's going on for a new mother," Armenta says. "The message is how she is viewing the good side of life. We dwell on the negatives so often. Shannon is pointing out the things we may take for granted."

Bryant says she didn't make the connection between motherhood and the theme of "It's About Love."
"That's probably right É becoming a mom has been very inspirational," she says. "The song 'Born Innocent' is about the way we come into this world, and then the story drifts into the responsibilities and pressures we fall into when doing things like choosing a college and becoming an adult. And then it comes full circle in the end. Having the baby influenced my vision and helped with the clarity of the story."

Choreographer Beatriz Restrepo, originally from Colombia, has devised new moves to accompany the songs since joining forces with Bryant three months ago. Previously, only a few songs in the performance - seen previously in Marin at Servino's in Tiburon - were interpreted simultaneously by the dancers; now just about all of them are. "The choreography and dance adds strength to the songs and puts picante in the show," Restrepo says.

When composing music, Bryant moves among styles ranging from contemporary pop through the bossa nova. She says she will get an idea or an inspiration for a song and apply it to the genre she thinks is most appropriate. The late Antonio Carlos Jobim influenced Bryant's "feel" for music; he wrote "The Girl From Ipanema" and is credited as the creator of the bossa nova, which has its origins in American jazz and the Brazilian samba.

Stevie Wonder has been another inspirational source for Bryant. "He has performed a wide variety of soul, love and spiritual tunes, yet he is highly individual," Bryant says. "I like to think I am that type of composer and singer. His songs of social awareness, such as 'Higher Ground,' stir my passion for expressing such issues as social pressures in our society."

While in high school in London, Ontario, Canada, Bryant entered a speech contest sponsored by the United Nations and won the local contest. "I traveled to New York and gave my speech, titled 'Why the U.N. is Important' to the U.N." Soon after, Bryant entered show business.

One of her first gigs was with a Canadian band, the Midnight Soul Review, in which she sang backup. Then she formed her own jazz group, the Shannon Bryant Quartet, and relocated to San Francisco in 2000. "There was more energy here," she says.

In 2001, she put together the Shannon Bryant Band. Since then, her successes include representing Canada at the 2003 International Music Festival at San Francisco's Yerba Buena Gardens, performing with the London Symphony Orchestra and showcasing her music at the SunFest World Music Festival in Canada, and headlining the Sarnia Jazz and Blues Festival.
Also, in 2003, Bryant took time off from her career to work as a vocal coach with the Global Alliance on the Lwak Music Project. The Lwak, named after a Kenyan village, is a spiritual collaboration of Kenyan and American gospel artists. Once the project is complete, proceeds from DVD sales will be donated to help children orphaned by the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Africa.

In 2004, in a concert sponsored by the Recording Academy Governor's Awards Celebration in San Francisco, Bryant performed on stage with Carlos Santana. She sang lead vocals in a calypso, funk-style version of "Fire on the Mountain," which was a tribute to Mickey Hart of the Grateful Dead. "Carlos smiled at me, not even knowing who I was, and I thought, 'Here I am on the stage with Carlos Santana!'" Bryant recalls.

"It's About Love" premiered at Club Jazz Nouveau in San Francisco in 2004 and another performance followed in 2005 at the Crocker Galleria. The latest version of "It's About Love" includes new songs and Restrepo's fresh choreography. This will be the first performance for the reworked show.
"Marin is a great place to debut something like this just because of the open-mindedness you get here," says Armenta, who with backup singer Sandy Griffith of Novato provide a Marin touch to the performance. "Musically, you have bluegrass, jazz, blues É and a great art scene. Musicians seem to be thriving here. I love it because of the freedom I have when I play. It's almost 100 percent improv for me."

Restrepo says her spiritual connection to Bryant, a San Francisco resident, was immediate. Restrepo saw a tape of previous performances and was asked to help give more life to the song lyrics.  "I feel a really nice connection with Shannon," Restrepo says. "Her songs really talk to me. They taught me realities of my daily life, and now I can share that with audiences. The dancers do a great job with their interpretations. It's a very powerful performance."

"The passion that drove me to create this show," Bryant says, "was with the hope of reminding people of the force of love that connects each of us to our world. É I see my future as continuing to write and perform songs that strengthen the spirit and take people back to the ocean and warm summer breezes so they'll feel safe and loved."

IF YOU GO
What: "It's About Love," a performance of music, dance and poetry
Who: The Shannon Bryant Band
When: 8 p.m. Friday
Where: Larkspur Cafe Theater, 500 Magnolia Ave., Larkspur
Tickets: $20
Information: 924-6107 or http://www.larkspurcafetheatre.com/
For booking information contact: info@shannonbryant.net, 415-573-5511.
Visit http://www.shannonbryant.net for additional information