About Shelita Burke
"A few years ago, Seattle based singer-songwriter Shelita Burke left her job and possessions behind and took off to Europe. In true Bohemian spirit, with little more than a guitar and an unwavering belief in her self-described emotional art music, Burke set out on a one woman adventure. “I’ve created this all myself, driven by the simple notion of putting my finger on a place on the world map and saying, ‘I want to go there,’ traveling with only my music. It’s exciting to explore and learn from so many different cultures while playing my music for so many different audiences.” Finding that her music was globally well-received, Burke returned to the States to work on her first release. Her impressive six track debut EP, Transfixed, is available now.
Transfixed opens with its title track and from the first note, listeners will know they have stumbled upon something special. With melodic guitar strumming and a mystical romanticism to the vocals, “Transfixed” takes a satirical look at society’s dependence on “smart” devices ultimately comparing real life intelligence to computers. Burke then seamlessly transitions into the jazz ballad, “Pour.” A simply constructed song that leaves a distinct impression, “Pour” is about giving all of yourself to a relationship as well as to the loneliness of its aftermath. Ample amounts of celestial sounding guitar plucking accompany Burke as her rhythmic vocals chant “I pour my heart out/You pour your heart out…/You tore your heart out/I pour myself in/I pour myself in.”
“Gold” showcases Burke’s vocal gifts as she masterfully weaves through the octaves on this song about the value and need for human interaction. Lyrics such as “We were like living to be seen/We were like flowers blooming in bed…” help paint the picture on this abstract track. “Swim” is one of my favorite songs on Transfixed. Opening with the guitar strumming that instrumentally defines the EP, “Swim” is about surviving an overly dramatic world. It is a beautiful track with lyrics such as “There is nothing wrong with you/Stop crying/You are not the victim anymore/I would like for you to show me how to swim/I want in/I want in/I want in.”
With “Else,” Burke presents a gorgeous, sort of slam poetry style of lyricism while exploring the idea of having alternatives to a static idea of love. Using a breathy sound delivery to her vocals, the star of this track is the accompanying instrumentation. There is a trippy, ethereal, new age sound to “Else” that allows listeners to feel like they are soaring along with Burke high above the earth absorbing all that is beautiful below. Transfixed closes with a remix of the title track. Picking up the tempo and adding a jazzy bass tone, exiting the EP with this almost electrified sound seems to be somewhat of a promissory note of the potential that is to come in the future. While the original version might be where she is, this version seems to be where she’s going. Consider it an auditory invite to her future musical journey.
With vocals that combine the pulsating delivery of Alanis Morrisette, with the sultry smoothness of Sade, the calmness of Norah Jones, and the high pitched runs of Joni Mitchell, Burke has a unique sound that is rarely seen in a new artist. If you love music, you will love Burke’s universally appealing debut EP, Transfixed. Her songs are a sort of simple complexity. Beginning with the straightforward song titles and ending in the depth of meaning in the lyrics against seemingly basic guitar playing, her work and ideas come together to offer something absolutely amazing." -Lisa D'Arrigo @IndieMinded.com