(Interview) Shi-Wisdom sits down with The Come Up Show to talk about her influences, Toronto indie scene, and writing for Rita Ora
Shi Wisdom has a voice one instantly remembers; an old soul voice that complements any classic production, what purists complain is missing from today’s music. Not only does she captivate with her voice but she writes music for some of the today’s most popular artists as well. Known for ripping every stage she touches with her live performance there is no reason to question why she is on everyone’s radar. With collaborations with JD Era, Kardinal Offishall, and a co-writing credit with Drake the songstress is poised to be the next big thing out of Toronto, but is that something she even cares about? One might be surprised to hear her answer. Check out our interview to see what she has to say about being considered “next”, her love with the city of Toronto, who in Hip Hop she grew up listening to and what she thinks about being signed to a major label.
Big Ske: Thanks for meeting with The Come Up Show, let’s get right into it. You have a lot of love for your city, how was your experience growing up in Toronto?
Shi-Wisdom: I grew up mostly around Eglinton West. When I was around twelve years old I moved to Maple, but I still went to elementary school in Eglinton. When I went to high school I attended a school in Maple. It wasn’t the best experience, it was a culture shock for me because growing up in Toronto you’re around all types of different people then you go somewhere where there’s one type of person and then you, I made the best of it. Growing up in Toronto is awesome though, I like the fact that it is so multicultural in comparison to other cities.
Big Ske: Funny you mentioned that I noticed you have some indian influence to you and your music.
Shi-Wisdom: I love Indian music, I love the way that they sing, it’s crazy watching them in their element . They don’t even move, It just pours out, I’ve actually been trying to do some training on classical Hindustani music. It’s really cool.
"Similarly, those eras are evoked on “Amori Infiniti,” the new release by Lucille Ghatti. Ms. Ghatti is more of a singer than Kilo Kish, though she too is less preoccupied with technique than feeling and mood. The production on Ms. Ghatti’s album is richer with the boom-bap drums of 1990s hip-hop — including on “4 J. Dilla,” dedicated to the famed producer — but it’s equally ethereal stuff, taking that source material and shooting it sky high, up into the clouds.”
So you got your band together, recorded some songs, and played some shows…now what? Now it’s time to start building your fanbase. The internet may have made things significantly easier than before, but it’s still just a tool. You have to do all the hard work yourself. So here are some helpful tips on how to do that.
PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE!!! I’m sure you’ve heard the old adage, “Practice makes perfect” and for good reason. It’s because it’s true. When you go out to play a show, you get one chance to make a good first impression on the crowd. You want to make sure you’re going to put on a show they will never forget. One of the best ways to do that is to practice your material over and over again. Every single member of the band should not only be able to play all of their parts flawlessly, but they should have a good idea of everyone else’s parts as well, so you can hold each other accountable. If you are able to forge that perfect show, it can go a long way when everyone at the show tells their friends about the incredible show they just experienced.
Newsletter! This may seem a little old fashioned with the rise of social networking and websites, but a fan’s email address is much more valuable than a Facebook like. It’s a good idea to give away something too, like a free download, in exchange for a fan’s email address. Then once you have those email addresses, you want to use them sparingly. Send your fans updates maybe once or twice a month. You want to keep them interested but you don’t want to overdo it.
Website! You have no excuse to not have a website anymore. Anyone can easily create and maintain their own website nowadays and for pretty cheap too. Not only does it make your band seem more professional, but it should also serve as the central hub for all information regarding your band: news, tour dates, merch, videos, pics, etc. And don’t just add the basics to your site, really beef it up with pictures and videos and whatever else you can think of! If a new fan sees you at a random show, you want them to go home and check out all your pictures and videos so they can learn as much as they can about you. Hell, you should even encourage fans to submit pictures and videos they take themselves.
Social Media! You need to have a strong presence on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, not only to keep people updated, but as a way to interact with them as well. Don’t just post about upcoming shows or record releases; post funny pictures or videos that you find interesting. At the end of the day, people want to connect with their favorite bands, and the best way to do that is to really let your thoughts and passions shine through. So go ahead and post that old awkward family photo, or that embarrassing video from high school…you’ve got nothing to lose (except maybes some self-respect, but it’ll be worth it).
For anyone reading this I hope this message finds you well.
I have come to the realization that not many people understand the business within Music. I look at myself as a musical connoisseur - an enthusiast, with a passion for music and the industry that fuels it.
In result, I’ve taken it upon myself to start A&R Report as a guide to keep you updated on all facets of the music industry.
My goal for this website is to not only profile independent artists who are making waves within music, but to profile the people who are the cause for their success.