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      Cosmic Funky Soul Diva
      Sy Smith is the epitome of cool. Like a breath of fresh air, singer-songwriter-keyboardist Sy Smith adds a certain kind of coolness that exemplifies where she is creatively in her music career. Recalling the days where funk, sexy and cool collide in a steamy fusion. The release of her debut CD... read more
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      Sy Smith is the epitome of cool. Like a breath of fresh air, singer-songwriter-keyboardist Sy Smith adds a certain kind of coolness that exemplifies where she is creatively in her music career. Recalling the days where funk, sexy and cool collide in a steamy fusion.

      The release of her debut CD The Syberspace Social is a giant step in the right direction. Smith picks up synth-laced soul music where Stevie Wonder and Herbie Hancock left off. She brilliantly experiments with unique sounds - skillfully uniting hip-hop, R&B, jazz, funk and with elements of dance over ethereal harmonies to make what she calls futuristic soul, all with smooth delivery. Smith takes the listener on a journey into a time where it’s all about the groove; bringing a self-styled vibrancy to the diverse music she grew up on. Her voice is a beacon that shines and wisely steers clear of overproduction. With titles like “Honeychild”, “Love and Such”, and “Turnstyles” and production from James Poyser, Nicolay, and Ali Shaheed Muhammad, this mix emerges with an explosive new simplicity and sophistication on The Syberspace Social.

      Smith has crafted a bona fide concept album that explores an endless range of promise and potential lyrically, musically and personally. “Welcome 2 Syberspace,” the album’s intro track, lets the listener know what the project is all about. “It’s about freedom from rules, liberation and anonymity with others…kinda how we all feel in Syberspace,” says Smith. With her ever-upbeat sense of fusion and without sacrificing zing, her music continues to ignore the stylistic restrictions that can leave soul music stale. One need look no further than the first single “Fa Sho” produced by Smith and Ali Shaheed Muhammad, takes the straight-ahead jazz of Coltrane and turns it flips it into a head-banging show opener.

      Sy Smith has a pretty impressive career. As a much in-demand vocalist, she strikes fans and musicians as that extraordinary thing, a genuinely real and talented musician. It is that musicianship that attracted the attention of fellow artists such as Usher, James Brown, Jamie Foxx, Me’shell N’degeocello, Eric Benét, Ginuwine and Brandy who recruited her to sing background vocals on various television shows as well as touring for more than a year with Whitney Houston and Macy Gray. She has also appeared in a string of popular GAP commercials and regularly sang with Vonda Shepard on the popular FOX television series “Ally McBeal.” In addition, Smith shares the vocal spotlight with legendary singer Al Green performing the title song to the Showtime series "Soul Food." Smith also served as musical director for BET's spoken word series, “Lyric Café.” This season, Smith can be seen and heard in phenomenal television series American Idol.

      A songbird at birth, Smith was born in New York and raised in Washington, DC. Drawing on a wealth of influences from Bach to Sarah Vaughan to Earth, Wind & Fire, Smith was exposed to a diverse musical palette at an early age. She studied classical piano for most of her childhood and early teens, and later found a musical outlet in the school choir.
      In addition to her success as a vocalist, Smith is also an accomplished songwriter. In 2001 she was honored by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences with an Emmy nomination in the category of Outstanding Music and Lyrics for writing and performing "Welcome Back (All My Soulmates)" the title track to the HBO Original movie “Dancing in September” starring Isaiah Washington and Nicole Ari Parker. This original tune is an accolade to soulful things of old and the people who remember them. Her career also includes a recent NAACP Theater Award nomination for Best Supporting Female-Local for the musical If You Don’t Believe: A Love Story.

      Her film credits include "Do You Only Wanna Dance" co-written by Smith and performed by R&B siren Mya can be heard in the film Havana Nights. For the short film Black Rose she not only co-writes alongside hit producer Terry Lewis the film’s key performance songs, but also stars in the film as the lead character Rose, a South African recording star. Her voice and writing also attracted the attention of the Brand New Heavies. On their latest release "We Won't Stop" Smith is featured on seven tunes, of which she co-wrote four. She is also featured vocalist on the latest release from Blue Note Records jazz guitarist Ronny Jordan on "Once or Twice," a tune she co-wrote which received critical acclaim as an “instant soul classic.”

      While Smith eagerly looks forward to hitting the road with her band, she has plenty to keep her busy at home. She has formed Psyko!, Inc. a production company through which she plans to help promote other artists through regular events; the first being “B!tchcraft… a venue for She.” Smith is a much in-demand session singer for jingles and album recordings alike, having recently done commercials for Nissan, Proctor & Gamble and on-the-spot vocal arrangements for Macy Gray, Jada Pinkett and Christina Milian. Smith’s eclectic sound and unparalleled live performances continue to draw a diverse range of fans including Prince, Sheila E., and others. After lately completing stints in Hong Kong, Japan (where she co-headlined the Blue Note Tour with Frank McComb), the First Annual Ghana Jazz Festival and the Bermuda Jazz Festival, the Royal Gazette reported, "this pretty young thang's talent was just about as awesome as the stars that night were."

      “I’m fascinated with the future unknown, experimental when I get into my zone… This is the story of an aquarius rising, ain’t it surprising? How’d she get in your head? How’d she get in there?” sings Sy in her autobiographical tune “Aquarius Rising”. One listen to her music, and it’s easy to see just how Sy gets into (and stays) in anyone’s head, fa’ sho!

      Categories: Music | R&B/Soul

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