Singer/songwriter Goapele broke out of Bay Area at the beginning of the last decade determined to make a difference in the world of music. Seamlessly blending genres while refusing to be limited by the “neo-soul” tag, the eloquent singer/songwriter completed her first release Closer in 2001 and never looked back. Embraced from the beginning by critics and fans alike, Goapele craved the perfect niche for herself as she created music that fused jazz, soul and hip-hop with her own beautiful poetry.
Yet, while the Oakland native and former Berklee College of Music student has continued to grow as artist and live performer in the eleven years since her debut, Goapele is also known as a savvy businesswoman.
Not content to be merely another singer lost in the machine, Goapele’s follow-up recordings Even Closer (2002) and Change It All (2005) were released through majors in conjunction with her own independent label Skyblaze. “I like being more hands on when it comes to my music,” Goapele says of the family owned independent label. “Establishing Skyblaze allowed me to have a more direct connection with my business as well as the music.”
While Rolling Stone magazine once called Goapele the “spiritual love child of Sade and D’Angelo,” her searing voice can be both sensuous and serious, often on the same song. After taking off six years from recording, Goapele has returned to the forefront of the music scene with Break of Dawn, a collection of sophisticated songs dealing with love, loss and all the life in between.
“One of my goals for the newest project Break of Dawn was to be more uninhabited,” Goapele says. “I came into this business as a young woman who wanted to be taken seriously for my music, but, now I’m more willing to share my sexiness as well. I realize that it’s possible to be both complex and provocative.”
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