DeadJournalist.com Exclusive Interviews
EXCLUSIVE Interview: Sophia Shoria
Chuck Norton, DeadJournalist.com
This has probably happened to you at some point in the last month:
You are watching prime-time, network television, when an ad for Target comes on during the commercial break. It is the one with a female vocalist covering the Beatles' song "Hello, Goodbye".
After the ad is over, the question arises, "Who was that?"
Here's the answer: Sophia Shorai.
Shorai, who was born in Zimbabwe but has been in the States since she was six months old, is an unsigned jazz and pop vocalist based out of Minneapolis.
Although still a college student, she has recorded vocals for several national television commercials in addition to her work with the band Desiradi and her own solo material.
Shorai has a jazz album slated to be released this Spring, but her main focus for this year is completing her degree in psychology from the University of Minnesota. She will continue to perform regularly in the Twin Cities and hopes to begin touring nationally in 2008.
DeadJournalst.com brings you this exclusive interview with Sophia Shorai.
How long have you been performing as a vocalist?
SS: I suppose I officially started performing around the age of 12 in my church along with playing several roles in local theater productions around the Twin Cities area. Since 2002, I’ve been performing consistently in local jazz and rock venues with some of the most celebrated players regionally and nationally.
What is your favorite part of performing live?
SS: My favorite part of performing live is having the opportunity to play with the many musicians I have and have had the honor of working with. Being able to interpret a song that has been performed numerous times is a privilege and timeless blessing.
Also, the natural high of being on stage in front of a listening audience is one the greatest feelings one could ever ask for.
You’ve recorded songs for several national ad campaigns. Has that exposure help to accelerate your career?
SS: My recent recording of the beloved Beatles’ song “Hello, Goodbye” is starting to open many doors in the record industry although I have yet to land anything significant. In the meantime, I’m having so much fun working with various writers, producers, and engineers and gaining the necessary experience to succeed in the music industry.
How did the your work on the Target ad come about?
SS: The opportunity to sing for the recent Target commercial came, really, out of nowhere. Since I’ve done quite of bit of commercial work in the past, perhaps it was word of mouth.
You recorded an album with the band Desiradi. Is the band still together? If so, are you working on new material?
SS: Desiradi was an original pop project that a producer/songwriter/engineer friend of mine, James Weber, and I worked on for a few years. We finished a full-length record and played a few shows around the Twin Cities yet it never quite took off.
However, we still have loads of records left so if anyone’s interested in purchasing, shoot me an e-mail!
Who has had the most impact on your musical career to this point?
SS: My parents have had the greatest impact on my musical career. After all, if weren’t for them I would’ve never discovered my passion for music. Also, James Weber, my former musical partner, taught me everything I know about working in a recording studio and holding my own during commercial sessions.