Introducing Angelique Anderson...performing at this year's Soulstream Vocalist Showcase

Tuesday, June 12, 2012 by Thomas, Michele | Studio News

Five years ago Angelique had no idea that she’d be sharing her life with others through music. Raised with the conventional wisdom that the best way to earn a decent living was to go to college and get a “good” job, she did just that. Although she showed interested in singing and performing at an early age, her parents didn’t pursue it because of the uncertainty they felt that career would bring. Until the age of sixteen Angelique performed in local talent shows, community and church recitals, and started a singing group with friends. However, with college exams coming and the seriousness of life on its way, she walked away from her passion and became a grownup. It wasn’t until after college that the passion found its way back into Angelique’s life.

While earning her “good” living, music made its way to the forefront when a co-worker asked Angelique to audition to front a local blues cover band. Her “good” office job was paying the bills, but it was leaving her unfilled and disconnected in other areas of her life.

Serious about the new gig, she began taking vocal lessons to hone her skills. This really came in handy when her band had the opportunity to appear on ENE Chicago Rock, a cable access show highlighting local talent. It was at this taping that Angelique met another local artist, Caswell James who would be instrumental in encouraging her to do the damn thing.

Unfortunately, like most bands, this one was short lived, but it did leave Angelique with some valuable experience and a great friend and guitarist, Carolina Goddard. The two spent some time working to start their own band and writing their own songs, wanting desperately to move away from solely performing covers. However, the pressures of day to day life and the regular 9 to 5 pushed that project to the bottom of the to do list. It was around this time that Mr. James asked Angelique about doing some vocals for some of his music. She quickly agreed.

Intrigued by his mix of electronica and rock, she asked if he could produce some tracks for some lyrics and melodies she had been developing. This initial collaboration bore La Veuve Noire (The Black Widow). At that time, Angelique’s only intent was to make a demo and work towards performing some small local venues abroad. However, Mr. James quickly recognized the depth of her talent and suggested, “why don’t you just do an album.”

Serious about doing it right, Angelique began taking piano and music theory lessons. She also began looking at the songs she had written to determine what the album should be about. Through this process, Angelique reflected on that big girl life and how it had led her to write most of her lyrics. They had been a form of therapy for her to survive some the most painful times in her life and contained revelations about her personal growth. She also noticed that when she shared the words at open mics they deeply connected with others.

That ride gave birth to No Ordinary, which fuses alternative rock, electronica, jazz, and hip-hop with haunting lyrics and soulful vocals to tell stories of self-love, betrayal, loss, redemption and everything in between. No Ordinary isn’t just Angelique’s personal story, it’s our personal story. Its poetry shows that while we each have our own experiences we aren’t alone in our feelings.

No Ordinary is slated for release late summer 2012.