Hailing from Southwest London Sharlette is a beautiful and talented singer/songwriter bringing her contemporary soulful pop sounds to the masses. We found out that she is playing at an event in London soon so thought it would be a great chance to meet with her and see what makes her tick, we caught up with her recently and chatted about overcoming shyness, her love of WHAM and just how many m&m's she could fit in her mouth, here's how we got on....
Hi Sharlette, please introduce yourself and your music in one sentence....
I am a singer/ songwriter relatively new to the music scene, my songs cross over from pop to soul to indie to rock to acoustic, as crazy as it sounds it seems to work!
How and when did you decide that you wanted to be a performer?
I've always loved to sing but never had the confidence to go anywhere with it and then I went to an Open Mic night in Battersea and I was forced by my mum to get up and sing. So I did. Then shortly after that I was booked for my first ever showcase at Pop Revue, which took place in April 14 this was a major turning point for me and I haven't looked back since!
In your opinion, what is the BEST album/record ever released and why?
Michael Jackson "Thriller" BECAUSE it just is. I can just NEVER get bored of listening to it!
Being unsigned how hard is it to get noticed and how has Social media helped you and your music?
As an unsigned artist it's very hard to get noticed because there is sooo much talent out there, however the challenge is thrilling! Social media has helped as it has been a major tool for me to make connections with Live Music Organisers, other artists and industry people of which I wouldn't have met if it hadn't have been for the likes of Twitter, Facebook and such.
How many m&m’s can you fit in your mouth at one time?
Possibly a whole packet ;)
NEWSFLASH - Mark Wincott went to the Water Rats in London on 17th June to check out the Cool2Rock event where Sharlette was playing and he asked her to complete the m&m's challenge, did she manage a whole packet? did she hell, I think Mark said that it was half a packet (and I think he was being generous as he didn't want to get a slap!). Photographic evidence below!
Tell me a fascinating fact about yourself
I am actually shy! (But I have learned how to overcome it at times, especially when I could really do without being shy haha!)
What word would you have added to the urban dictionary?
"Bae" (if it's not in there already!)
Do you own a record that you wouldn’t like to admit you have?
I have no shame in saying that I have the Wham greatest hits album... "Wake me up, before you go go..."
Is there something you would like to tell each of the band members that you haven’t told them before?
I have no band members :( #weep
Do you have a favourite cheesecake?
Superman can deflect bullets with his chest, but when a gun is thrown at him he has to duck…explain why?
Because why should he look daft having something lobbed at him and it hit him in the head! It's far cooler to dodge ;)
First gig you ever went to?
To see my friend Abimaro at The Roundhouse :)
Where will you record your debut EP and what made you choose that studio?
I have recorded it already, I chose this person because he has a good ear and produced an amazing track for my friend Chromatone!
What is the best advice you ever received and who was it from?
Music wise: "Enjoy every step of the journey"
... And that advice was from one of my friends who has seen a lot of people go through the live music scene, from grass roots to established artists.
Life wise: "No regrets, just learn from your mistakes"
... From my mum :)
What is your process of making music? What influences you to write a song, such as ‘Get away’?
My process of making music or should I say writing songs varies, as sometimes the melodies just come to my head with no music, when I'm feeling a certain way, like how "I turn to you" was written (which I came up with whilst cycling home!!).
With the song "Get Away", the chords and hook were shared with me by someone (Sam from SEB Collective) I was asked to write around it and I was just in a mode of feeling like I wanted to drive and move away from what was stressing me at the time and that's where the verses came from!!
When I wrote "Shot Me Down" I was playing with an A chord and Em on guitar and then the words of that song "came to be"!
So music comes from my gut really, it depends on what inspires me at the time!
It really varies on how!
During 2014 you gained a huge amount of experience with touring, which gig stood out the most for you?
I would say even though I did a little gigging abroad which was amazing, my first headline show (which was at Ice Bar in London in August) was the one that stood out to me the most for last year. When I saw "SOLD OUT" on the morning of the day of my gig I couldn't actually believe it, it was quite overwhelming that people, in such a short space of time that I had been pursuing a career in music, had all actually come to see me perform!
What is your favourite Saturday night and Sunday morning records?
Saturday night: Absolutely anything by Disclosure!!
Sunday morning: Otis Redding "Sitting At The Dock of a The Bay" ️
Name three people (alive, dead or fictional) that you would like as dinner party guests?
There are many good bands and musicians out there, who would you ask the readers of musicmuso to look out for?
NEVAMIS........he is amazing and silences a crowd where ever he goes to perform.
Do you think we can ever live in a world where a chicken can cross the road without having its motives questioned?
The chance would be a fine thing ;)
What are your plans for 2015?
I will be planning my next headline show, the date will be confirmed very soon.
I will strive to keep it moving and to keep it rolling, continue to write songs and perform them at various gigs to get my music out there. Once this EP is released I will be working on singles.
I will also continue to collaborate with other artists and in that develop my own craft. I like to team up with other artists as I like the community spirit that comes about when we help each other!
Being the lovely lady that she is, we were going to let her off having to answer our quickfire questions, this thought soon passed and it wasn't long until she was strapped into the questioning chair and force fed 50/50 style questions until she could take no more! Here's how we got on....
Coffee or Tea?
Breaking Bad or The Walking Dead?
Mac or PC?
Fry up or Sunday roast
Prince or George Michael?
I take the 5th amendment, I love them both in totally different ways!
CD or Vinyl?
CD it's easier!
Camden or Kentish Town?
Pie and Mash or Fish and Chips?
Pie and mash
Car or Motorbike?
Acoustic or electric?
Shower or Bath?
Tattoos or Piercings?
Robert de Niro or Al Pacino?
We'd like to thank Sharlette for taking the time to chat to us and we wish her every success with her next headline show. If you want to see her this week, pop down to The Water Rats where Cool2Rock will be hosting an event featuring some amazing local talent including Belle and the Busker, Luna Wilson, Rich Stephenson and a very special guest that we can't tell you about (we do know but we've been sworn to secrecy - just make sure you're there as it's gonna be EPIC!) We'll also be there to carry out the m&m's experiment, Mark will be armed with at least one full bag, maybe more if she can manage them....it may get messy!
To keep up to date with Sharlette and to check out her music, please click on the channels below.
Interview by Mark Wincott