When hearing the name Alysha Brillinger, one can only think bold, charismatic, musically talented and full of life.
At only 22, Brillinger is taking the world by storm, and while the music industry is hard to break into, she does it flawlessly, with a smile and a tea to go!
Born and raised in Toronto, Brillinger moved to Kitchener at the age of 14 where she shortly after began singing in blues bands and at festivals. She started writing songs at 15.
“I’ve always known I wanted to sing. I remember being three years old and watching Aladdin, and knowing I wanted to be Jasmine, just because she sings,” said the famous singer, while strolling down memory lane.
After high school, she studied jazz at Humber College for half a semester. Deciding it was not for her, Brillinger focused her attention on making music and as a result, at 19, she released her first single called Lifted. She has also written songs with Tony Kanal from No Doubt and Jason Reeves. Furthering her success, one of her songs was played on Degrassi during one of their episodes.
Brillinger’s style and sound is not something you encounter every day, which only makes it that much more special.
Coming from a mixed background (her father is from Tanzania and her mother is from Orangeville), she balances the musical differences gracefully, giving birth to a unique sound. “My style is very throwback. I would compare it to Amy Winehouse’s music. I take a lot from older music and would say that it’s more old school meets funky reggae,” said Brillinger.
“Alysha Brillinger has such a unique sound to her voice,” says Vanessa Cardoso, a University of Waterloo student who attends Little Bean, where Brillinger plays. “You can tell that she writes her own lyrics because of the emotion that comes across when she sings them – her music just makes you smile. I love that she has this sort of folky, classic sound too. She’s just real – you know? It’s her ability that makes her music good instead of special effects.”
Brillinger was working in a vegan café in Kitchener, mostly singing and songwriting, when Chris Taylor, a music manager from New York, heard her music and called her up. She is currently signed with Lava/Universal Republic and is working on her second album.
Brillinger plays numerous local shows, including at The Little Bean in downtown Kitchener every Sunday night and the Reservoir Lounge in Toronto every Thursday night. She has also performed as far away as New York and Los Angeles.
“My musical inspirations are Ella Fitzgerald, for the joy in her voice, Bonnie Raitt, because she plays guitar and mixes blues with contemporary music and lastly my dad, because he introduced me to music,” said Brillinger.
“When my music video for Better Soon came out, my friend was going through a really tough time because of his newly-discovered cancer and he told me that my song was the anthem for his recovery. It’s something very rewarding to hear. It’s something I’m really proud of,” said Brillinger.
As a huge success in the local music scene, Brillinger is thinking ahead in the future. “Five years from now, I wish to be in John Mayer’s arms,” the artist said jokingly, “No, but seriously, I hope to be living in New York or Los Angeles, touring, songwriting and travelling the world. I also hope to work with Mark Ronson, who produced Amy Winehouse’s records.”
For more information on Brillinger, visit www.alysha
brillinger.com or www.facebook.com/alyshabrillinger. You can listen to her songs at www.youtube.com/xoxalyshaxox.