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Shelley Harland

Shelley Harland is a singer-songwriter with a passion to sing and write music of all flavours. She has written pop songs, dance songs, acoustic songs, deep dark and beautiful songs.......like most people she enjoys a variety of music and enjoys that freedom within her own creations ...so you never know what you're gonna get with Harland!

Untrained in music, she discovered her talent while living in New York - she picked up a guitar, wrote a few songs and her journey began. Her amazing voice has inspired collaborations with people all over the world, she has worked with legends such as John Cale & Larry Klein and toured with Elvis Costello and The Fray. You can find her on many albums globally as well as her own albums.

Her own journey began in London where she was born to a carpenter father and a nurse mother. “We were a typical Cockney working class family,” she says. “There were no musical aspirations. But there’d be singalongs and dance routines at family get-togethers.”

In her late teens Shelley realised there was something special about her voice. She’d sing in noisy karaoke bars and the crowds would fall silent to listen. Then she met James Wright, an Australian who had arrived in London to form a band. He urged her to take up singing full-time. 

Shelley and James soon relocated to New York where, during the day Shelley would work as a private investigator (staking out some of New York’s high flying socialites). Shelley developed her talent for song writing and programming - experimenting with music in her bedroom each evening. In an ‘only in New York’ moment, The Velvet Underground’s John Cale commissioned Shelley to work on one of his records.

These requests to work with Shelley’s beautiful voice spanned genres and styles. Guru found Shelley through MySpace and included her on his latest Jazzmatazz release. Junkie XL, Pole Folder, Delerium and Josh Abraham were other collaborators — and people whom she still works with. Shelley also toured the US and Canada fronting the band Delerium.

Recently Shelley and James moved to Sydney. In between her overseas collaborations, she made “Red Leaf” with producer David Skeet. While absorbing the sounds and moods of her environment, Shelley’s Sydney network soon expanded to include Tim Powles of The Church, who fell immediately for her music and was soon volunteering to drum on what would prove to be the album recordings. “Red Leaf” was mixed in London by Chris Sheldon (Foo Fighters, Pixies, Radiohead) and mastered at the legendary Abbey Road studios. A big deal for a beautiful record that began on a $500 piano in Shelley’s living room.

“The music I made changed when I moved to Australia,” Shelley explains. “I wasn’t listening to anything different. My tastes have always been about The Beatles, Motown, The Carpenters, Bjork, Portishead and Fleetwood Mac. But while New York made me feel electric, Sydney was so laid back and beautiful that my music took on that flavour.”


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