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Sharmaine: The Authentic Experience

Musician Sharmaine and her band

With angelic vocals, inspired beats, and meaningful lyrics, Sharmaine creates an endless stream of fresh pop/R&B jams you just can’t turn off. Joined by four talented fellow musicians, this versatile artist uses influences like Rhianna and Whitney Huston to craft songs that never fail to make you move.

Sharmaine strives to create an open environment for her audience – a space where everyone feels welcome – and she’s succeeded. While her subject matter ranges from carefree to heartfelt, Sharmaine never fails to bare her true soul, letting you in to her experience one note at a time.

One thing’s for sure, when you listen to Sharmaine, you’re going to feel good.

You can catch Sharmaine live at Sound Off! Semifinals February 23.

What does being part of Sound Off! mean to you?

Sharmaine: For me, Sound Off! is an opportunity to build more relationships even though I suck at talking. But [this] an opportunity to build more relationships in a community with musicians. To branch out.

What artists are currently inspiring the music you create?

Sharmaine: I’ve been listening to a lot of Ariana Grande and Whitney Houston, Beyoncé, Rihanna. I listen to other rappers too. Travis Scott, Kanye, stuff like that.

Sharmaine and her band

Do you have any songs that would be random? Not expected?

Sharmaine: I don’t. I have a lot of different songs, but I barely know the artist. You ever have those weird songs that are in your playlist, but you don’t really pay attention to the artist? That’s me.

Why do you make music? How does it make you feel?

Sharmaine: I make music to express myself and to express what I’m going through authentically, when I don’t have words for them, just speaking. Why am I the only one talking?

Jonah: I feel like you kind of have to because your voice is so good and if you didn’t use that, it would be messed up.

Sharmaine: Yeah, ok. I mean I feel like I’ve had my best moments in music. It’s been a very good, not escape, but a good way of confronting your problems and getting through them and admitting things and being very straightforward.

Sound Off! semifinalist Sharmaine

Do you write about what you were feeling in the moment or in reflection?

Sharmaine: It depends. My first two singles were in the moment. One was about being mad in that moment, and then [the other] was just about, “It’s summer time and I want a summer song,” and I just want to make other people feel good.

That’s those two, but then there was another one that came out that was reflecting my past with my home life before that. So, it just depends on how I’m feeling and which you want to write about.

How about the rest of you? Why do you make music?

Jonah: Who’s going first?

Theo: I will go.

Jonah: You’re the one that talks the most. So

Theo: As an artist your art is kind of your gift to the world. If you have something to give to people, then you want to give it to them. Thanks why I make music. So, people will listen to it.

Jonah: And the group unity aspect of it. I got into another band with this [Drew] but, it’s like if we all got these skills and then we intertwine them, and then we make things that are amazing to all of us, you know what I mean? It’s like a different level of connecting with another person, and that’s what you do with the crowd too, you bring them into it. That’s just a tight experience in general.

MoPOP's Sound Off! artist Sharmaine in a candid moment

What do you hope to achieve through your music?

Sharmaine: I hope I get to a point where I can travel around the world and see other scenes rather than just Seattle. That’s been a big dream of mine to go to, like, Japan or Africa and perform.

Jonah: Make an impact in the scene. I I like to do as much as I can. So, that’s why I’m excited, because I haven’t played with anybody like Sharmaine. I also liked her music. But I like working with things that could affect the scene in the city. I’m not personally into lots of the biggest things that happen around here. So, I would like to work with the [music] I would like [to see get] bigger and be a part of that. That would be pretty cool.

What would a personal impact look like?

Jonah: A change in the stigma of Seattle’s sound. I feel like it used to be really cool. I personally am not against anything, but I feel like there’s just a haze. It doesn’t have its one thing right now, you know? I feel like there are so many good things that just aren’t big enough at the moment.

Drew: I guess I just hope to achieve exactly what I have been achieving, which is just the whole experience, I guess.

It’s just that I feel alive. Not just with the ability to express myself but with the ability to share this experience with everybody around. As long as I can keep doing that, and as long as it keeps feeling right, I’m with it. I like where it’s taken me so far. I feel like, if you take care of the music, it will take care of you.

Sharmaine: Yeah.

Jonah: It [has] only been up.

Sharmaine at Sound Off! orientation 2019

If your music were a fruit or vegetable, what would it be and why?

Sharmaine: Oh, we got this.

Jonah: Weren’t we already talking about this?

Sharmaine: Yeah, we already did, to be honest.

Jonah: I wasn’t there for that one.

Sharmaine: What was it? A tangerine?

Ivan: A peach.

Sharmaine: A peach!

Jonah: Why?

Drew: Because it’s got some tang.

Ivan: It’s succulent.

Sharmaine: It’s got some tang to it.


Catch Sharmaine live at Sound Off! Semifinals Saturday, February 23. Get your tickets right here.

Photos by Nate Watters

Music, Sound Off!

About the author

Adrienne Clark

Adrienne is a writer and editor from Seattle and is MoPOP's Content Wizard (patent pending).

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