With so many great artists and performers that have literally inundated the music industry over the past decade with tons and tons of great music, the question then remains; is there yet, one more exceptionally qualified performer out there that deserves to stand before their counsel of peers and be counted? The answer would definitely be yes. And her name is, Avery* Sunshine. Without any doubt, the talented artist is a modern day musical giant with a soulful spirit that bellows through her velvet voice.
An artist tootally equipped with the necessary tools to thrive and survive in today’s highly competitive music industry seems to have tapped a source high in spiritual nutrients as well as an abundance of blessings. She feels as though each and every footstep has been ordained and ordered by God.
Legendary DreamGirls “Diva”, Jennifer Holiday, found it necessary to tap Avery* Sunshine on the shoulder to borrow her extraordinary talents to be choral director for the theatrical production of DREAMGIRLS, but, only after she was hired as lead keyboardist for TYLER PERRY’S stage play “MEET THE BROWNS”. After such groundbreaking accomplishments, Avery* Sunshine thought it was time to launch her own project and that’s exactly what she did.
On her self-titled debut CD; Avery*Sunshine, she takes us on a journey through time revealing the many aspecst of our hearts, as well as our imaginations. Musical notations, so full of life, seemingly to dance right off the disc into your soul compelling you to bob your head and tap your feet. Well written and arranged, Avery*Sunshine is loaded with, and you will agree, some of the best R&B-NEO-SOUL-GOSPEL you’ve heard in years. Avery hit this one straight out of the park, and I imagine the ball is still airborne. So, if you haven’t already added this masterfully thought piece to your own personal collection of fine arts, you might want to do so after reading this article.
Her roots deeply grounded in God, Avery is not ashamed to speak about her relationship with God; in fact, her beliefs are this; “Without God, I, or my music are nothing”. Moreover, Smoothjazztimes has awarded Avery*Sunshine four out of five stars for their exceptional work, dedication and commitment to the arts, moreover, remaining true to her core-unity.
Sitting at the airport Avery* Sunshine takes a moment to speak by telephone with Smoothjazztimes’ Patricklee Hamilton to talk Music, Social networking, God and family balance.
SJT: Hi, Avery* it is a pleasure to speak with you. How are you?
AS: I’m fine, and trying to stay busy. Unfortunately, I’m sitting on the airplane on the tarmac indefinitely. (Chuckles form both) Can you hear how excited I am? (Avery jokes with SJT) Can you hear the excitement in my voice? (Avery* playfully jokes again at her situation to SJT)
SJT: I can. (Kidding along with Avery) Avery, Smoothjazztimes would like to thank you for taking the time
to call in for a short Interview.
AS: Thank you so much for having me.
SJT: Avery can you tell us about your debut CD?
AS: Yes. Well, it’s been out for just about one year as an independent, and so, it’s easy to kind-of slip underneath the radar. However, we are aggressively still promoting it, and it’s really starting to take off right now.
SJT: You mentioned that the CD is independent. Do you find it more advantageous to remain independent at the moment?
AS: Absolutely. Because we reserve much of the right to do our music and, truth –be-told, for the money too.
SJT: I totally see your point.
AS: We are doing the work that needs to be done without having to reach if you know what I mean.
SJT: Yes, I sure do. Would you say, like cutting out the middleman?
SJT: Do you eventually plan to sign with major label, or, are you comfortable where you are?
AS: We would love to sign with a major label. As an independent, it would take about 6 or, 7 more albums before people would start to know just who we are at this level as independents. So, if we were able to hook with a major label, we could help with the distribution and that would really push things along. So, we are definitely interested, and would love to do that. But it would have to be the right situation, because we have created this thing, me and my two partners.
SJT: I understand.
AS: We are solely independent.
SJT: You mentioned your partners. I know about Ernest Johnson, can you tell us about Dana Johnson?
AS: Yes. He’s my producer, my co-writer, my manager. He does everything. If I’m not wearing the right clothes, he’s my stylist. If I’m singing the wrong notes, then he’s my vocal coach. I mean, you name it, he’s it. However, we are working to get some of those jobs off of him. (Chuckles)
SJT: I read that Dana plays guitar as well.
AS: Yes he does. In fact, he has a Grammy with India Arie.
SJT: That’s wonderful. How did the two of you hook up?
AS: OMG, years ago at church. He was actually working at the church when I was eventually hired there as minister of music. And while working on the album with my sister, well, at least we thought we were working on the album. (Giggles from both) Dana said, “You know, I can help you guys really do this thing.” And we were like, “okay, sure, let’s do it” And before I knew it, we were writing songs. That’s when Avery* Sunshine was born.
SJT: The name Avery*Sunshine, is that your birth name?
SJT: Understanding what it takes to have such an exciting career, do you find it hard to juggle home and professional life?
AS: At first I did, however, just so as long as everyone, primarily my kids, and my parents, knows what the deal is, then things are okay. My family helps me stay balanced. What’s funny is, when I am home too long, I start to miss the road (Chuckles)
SJT: It is good to have balance.
AS: You are so right! That is it! In every aspect of our lives, we need balance.
SJT: Avery, you have a strong spiritual foundation that resonates throughout your music, and even through this conversation with me today. Were you raised in the church?
AS: Thank you so much, and yes, I was raised in the church. “Was even given the name, “Preacher girl” from my aunt”. (Laughter from AS&SJT)
SJT: I see that you are utilizing social networking like many others. Do you find it useful?
AS: Yes, I certainly do. What an exciting way to communicate to our fans.
SJT: Avery, I would like to take this time to thank you for taking the time to speak with us today. Have a safe flight and call us back real soon. God bless.
AS: You are so very welcomed Patrick. Thank you and God bless you too.
AVERY*SUNSHINE is available in the SmoothJazzTimes.com Music Store powered by Amazon.com – Link: http://www.smoothjazztimes.com/music_store.aspx
1. All In My Head
3. The Most (Feat. Roy Ayers)
4. Ugly Part of Me
5: Perform (Interlude)
6. Need You Now
8. I Got Sunshine
9. Blessin Me
10. Everybody Loves (Interlude)
11. Like This
12. Just Not Tonight
13. Big Momma (Hidden Track)
14. Afraid (Bonus Track)