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Life & Work with 3lise

Today we’d like to introduce you to 3lise.

Hi 3lise, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
Every family has their niche, whether it’s sports or traveling – for me, it was music. In my environment, there was always some type of instrument in my presence or one of my cousins making a worldly experience a song. I was always a quiet kid so it was natural for me to express myself using poetry, dance, or a simple melody. Growing up between Richmond and Oakland, I had so many different influences because of being surrounded by different cultures. The Bay has a multitude of influential musicians, which I am honored to have been surrounded and inspired by.

I was nine when I had my first performance surrounded by people I knew of or loved. The results I had received was more than a “Oh Elise, you looked like you were having fun up there!” or ” Keep up the practice”… it was tears and awe. I didn’t realize my power or yet the feeling of serenity I was able to induce for myself and others. From there, my mom had put me in a music conservatory in East Oakland, where I was taught the violin and piano, but it didn’t go farther than me playing it in my passing time. Being influenced by Carl Thomas, Erykah Badu and Prince it was the desire to be on stage like I had observed them doing so I auditioned for an all-genre band. I had gotten in but as a 2nd keyboardist. It was upsetting, but it gave me the push to practice harder to get into the spot I wanted and achieved later on. From there, I was introduced to many different genres such as classical, rock, alternative, and more.

That school year was a turning point for me. I was going through family changes that shifted my perspective on life as a pre-teen. Knowing and seeing too much I needed a way to channel that confusing energy into something more enlightening. I began reading and writing more, which lead me to poetry and studying about different ideologies. I’d use poetry to talk about my own life but also my community’s with their consent. It came to the point where I’d write for people and they’d tell me I captured it perfectly, which always cherished and honored. Change never ceases, but it’s about the acceptance and awareness of growth.

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
Embarking music hasn’t always been easy. I knew it was my passion, but I didn’t understand I could make money off of it. My school took us on tours around the country but never taught us about the marketing and game of the industry. I was able to do small gigs around the bay during high school to earn extra money and exposure. After I graduated high school, I moved to South Carolina and in a sense, I was fed up with pursuing music. In high school, I didn’t understand what moves you had to take and no one was willing to teach me or give a starting point. Once I got to South Carolina, it was immediate support for my academics and music. I remember a homegirl a few years older than me, Aisa Blue, had kept me updated on open mics in the area where I could share my talent. Confidence was difficult for me to maintain at the time, but I’m always grateful for the support I got from my roommate, Kierra for leaving when I needed time to record features or my peers pushing me with love.

There are always going to be struggles in any field you pursue, but it’s all about the bounce back. When I promote insecurities, I’m going to gain 10x more of that energy. When you promote confidence, I’m going to gain 10x more of that energy, plus the feelings of others. It’s always important to keep your head up and know what you’re living for.

Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
I’m a live performer and recording artist specializing in neo soul, which is any music that moves people internally. I write and compose music, but I work with different genres often which allows me to vocal produce and engineer for others when needed. I’d say I’m most proud of my resilience that’s presented in my work ethic and art that I produce. It was difficult to get everything started but I’m invested in my future as a musician. I’d say what makes me different is my need for change and my presence of compassion. The culture of the industry is always changing, but it’s truly important that I remain authentic and resilient.

We’re always looking for the lessons that can be learned in any situation, including tragic ones like the Covid-19 crisis. Are there any lessons you’ve learned that you can share?
The Covid-19 Crisis taught me as an artist and human that people are brought together through art even more than I believed. My supporters showed me unconditional love because I was transparent with my journey of self-healing and growing. They were able to identify with my experience of pain and love because of their own creativity, minds, and perspectives.

Another lesson I learned is how to be my own peace. I believe as a young girl, I was influenced by my older peers or family and in result, I didn’t know how I truly needed to respond in situations to protect myself. I was afraid to offend people, but it clicked I was sabotaging myself trying to protect others. With a little more wisdom and gut I lead my life with confidence and care. Growing isn’t linear, which is easier said than done, but it’s the risk of striving that keeps one going.

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Image Credits
GBE Entertainment Matts Demise Vida Productions

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