Shalisa celebrates ‘Five Decades’ of music with beautiful new album
ORLANDO, FL – Shalisa James has been a professional vocalist, pianist and music director for more than 30 years. And as she approaches her 50th birthday, she’s preparing to launch an album that not only celebrates a life of music but which also shows other female artists that it’s never too late to live out their dreams.
After singing on five albums with her group Toxic Audio over the years, as well as singing on other artists’ albums and tackling thousands of studio projects, Shalisa decided she wanted her own album to celebrate turning 50. “Five Decades” is a 14-track project that showcases a variety of sounds and styles perfectly suited to display Shalisa’s beautiful vocals.
“I wanted to share that even at this age, I’m in the best voice of my life,” Shalisa said. “I chose music from all five decades of my life for mostly covers but with a twist. Another interesting thing about this album is that it was a pandemic project, providing income and collaborative opportunities for more than 20 musicians during the lockdown months of April through July. We worked totally remotely with many band members for tracks, never even meeting in person.”
Shalisa is no stranger to the recording process and entertainment industry. Her company, Entertainment Central, has produced music acts and shows at major attractions worldwide. She’s worked with Universal Studios and Warner Brothers to create the Frog Choir Show for the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. She collaborated with the Tonight Show team and Universal to create the show for the Race Through New York with Jimmy Fallon attraction. And her video for the song she wrote with her husband, “Couldn’t Get a Sitter,” has seen more than a million views on its way to winning a Telly Award for Best Comedic Music Video. She’s also done work on Broadway with her lead vocal on the Broadway Concert version of “Hair” being nominated for a Grammy Award with her group Toxic Audio. Shalisa has also been named Female Vocalist of the Year in 2005, 2006 and 2007 by the Contemporary A Cappella Society of America. Her voice has been heard on more than 1,000 radio jingles across the U.S.
Now with her new album, Shalisa is ready to show the world a new twist on the music her fans have come to know and love from her for the past 50 years. A lot of the songs on the album have layered vocals because she loves harmonies, and many of the covers will feel familiar to listeners while also presenting a unique vibe that’s more modern. The last track on the album features all members of her family – her husband sings, her son plays guitar and beat-boxes, as well as plays guitar. Her younger son – who is a screenwriter and singer – contributes to the song. And her daughter – who at 26 is studying to become a doctor and fronts a Rock band at her med school – also added some vocals to the song.
With tracks that explore love and meaningful relationships in all its forms, Shalisa said “Five Decades” is a fun album for music lovers of all ages and demographics. But more than anything, she hopes the album will inspire other women out there to continue pursuing their dreams no matter what the challenges.
“I hear a lot of women talking about how they were so much better when they were younger and that they’re losing their range or their chops or they don’t have stamina,” Shalisa said. “That’s a narrative that women have heard a lot and buy into. I wanted to let people know and show them proof that you can still sing as well as you’ve ever sung in your life when you’re hitting 50. At this age, we’re getting better and better and working at our craft. My life experience comes through in the music, which adds layers that I wouldn’t have been able to bring at age 20. So I hope this album inspires others to see that they can be at their best if they stick with it and don’t buy into a negative narrative. The world likes to tell people they’re not as good as they were, and I, with this album, I wanted to say, ‘No! I’m actually singing better than I’ve ever sung.’”
To listen to Shalisa’s music or to follow her on social media, please visit:
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