One cool October evening somewhere near 145th ST in Harlem, NY, a group of young artists, musicians, and poets were gathered inside an upstairs industrial loft to mingle. Outside, amidst the usual cacophony of the big city, the voice of a young singer/musician by the name of iamchelseaiam was heard above the madness. She sang along to her own guitar playing, and appeared to be completely comfortable in her surroundings as if she was performing in a field of lilies. The dimly lit sidewalk in front of the Harlem loft served as a standing area for spectators as she performed her own rendition of SWV’s Rain. The Shell gas station next to the loft provided additional lighting that added a nice backdrop for the performance. She sang out every note in such a manner that the audience felt the raw emotion. From her musical toolbox, she pulled out percussion guitar techniques during parts of the song to emphasize phrases and words, and even added riffs and runs to her singing during the chorus. Her version of “Rain” was a more stripped down version of the original, and more intimate. At the end of her performance, her audience showed appreciation by making small donations, and inquired about how to keep up with her work; humbly and welcomingly she embraced her audience.
The Urban Hippie, as she sometimes refers to herself, started out at a young age mastering multiple instruments, and honing her singing skills. The Ohioan currently resides in New York City, and has been booked at venues such as SOB’s and Bitter End. Her recent performance at Bitter End was recorded, and presented to listening audiences as an EP. Live at the Bitter End is a follow up from Chelsea’s 2012 release Technicolor Summer; moreover, the title described well what type of sound listeners could expect to hear.
Under the alias Mizzmeasured, Chelsea worked with the production duo Boys Play Music on the venture.
Her latest release is a big step away from her work with BPM. The electro beats are abandoned, and all that comes along for the ride is her acoustic. The EP opens up with “Hennessey” one of the catchiest tunes Chelsea presents to audiences. The staccato chord based tune is the centerpiece while tracks such as “The Edge,” and “Seashell” draws listeners into her world. If you thought Drake was the only one that could keep you up at night in your feelings you were wrong. “The Edge” was a previously recorded song produced by The Pen Gang, but on Live at the Bitter End listening audiences get an acoustic version overflowing with emotions. This easy listening EP is definitely something that should be coming to a coffee house near you. Next time you’re in line ordering that Americano ask the attendee to turn on some Chelsea. In the mean time, keep up with all of her latest happenings: http://iamchelseaiam.com/, and https://soundcloud.com/iamchelseaiam. Also, you can check out a dope video of her performing “Rain” on Instagram: @iamchelseaiam.
Born and raised in the birthplace of Funk, and arguably the birthplace of Rock n’ Roll, music is in my veins. If names like Bootsy Collins, and the Ohio Players ring a bell, then you know where I come from. As a musician and poet myself, I have an appreciation for art that hasn’t been inundated by the agendas of major labels and networks. Recently I’ve been sharing music and connecting with artists via social media. Follow me on Instagram @mainstream_music_isgarbage.