Singing Sensation Shoshana Bean

Singing Sensation Shoshana Bean

 

When you hear Shoshana Bean’s recently-released album, O’Farrell Street, it’s hard to fathom how she isn’t a household name yet. O’Farrell Street, which was released in early 2013, is Bean’s sophomore record, a follow-up to her debut album Superhero.

Bean’s road to stardom began on the stage, where she was a member of the original cast of the Tony-award winning musical, Hairspray, and then tapped to take over the coveted lead role of Elphaba for Idina Menzel in the Broadway hit Wicked.  Bean’s turn in Wicked showcased her unmatched, powerhouse vocals and convinced everyone — including herself – that where she needed to be was making her own music.

 

In December of 2008, Bean released Superhero, which hit #5 on the iTunes R&B chart and garnered her an independent music award. Superhero was full of high-energy pop and R&B tunes, several of which were featured in television shows like The Big C, The Bad Girls Club and in television spots on NBC.

 

While Superhero was an undoubtedly good record, her sophomore effort proves just how great Bean’s musical prowess really is. O’Farrell Street, produced by Bean with the help of crowdfunders via Kickstarter, is a tribute to one of the most classic eras in all of American musical history – the soul era of the 1960s, and the end result is a record that is somehow (magically) simultaneously innovative and nostalgic. The album’s 10 tracks contain a good-mix of upbeat songs like the energizing “Cold Turkey” and “Smoke and Mirrors”, and more heartfelt, croony ballads like “I Am Not Unchanged” and “Water”.

 

When talking about O’Farrell Street, Bean says that she was particularly inspired by record labels of the soul era, like Stax and Motown, and by particular artists like Otis Redding, Aretha Franklin and Etta James. The live horns that Bean used while recording the album lend it a truly authentic ‘60s sound, but her unique and awe-inspiring vocals, as well as some remarkably honest and well-crafted lyrics, make it also feel fresh and exciting. And, it’s the kind of record that’s just so catchy, you’ll find yourself wanting to listen to it again and again.

 

Bean’s musical career includes stints singing backup for Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Luther Vandross, Brian McKnight, and Bebe Winans – but if I had to predict, it won’t be long before other singers are listing stints singing backup for Shoshana Bean as an honor on their own resume. So, if you’re into real soul music, stunning vocals, or simply catching superstars while they’re on the way up – there is no way you can miss this album. (You can buy a copy here on Amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/OFarrell-Street-Shoshana-Bean/dp/B00AR7ZULU)

 

This article was written by The Note Show contributor Becky B.

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Author: Note

Elias Note is an English writer and interviewer. He grew up playing jazz and classical music and studying Musical Orchestration. He is a children's author and an app designer creating things that make life a little easier and a little more productive for everyone who uses them. He loves music, movies, books, comics and talking to skilled and talented artists about their work.

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