Returning from a three-month US tour, Shelley's already back in action! As part of her Oz tour, performing in WA, Adelaide, Melbourne (see bottom for details), Sydney and Queensland - wow, your head spinning too? But that's who Shelley is: Dynamic! Driven! Determined! Well...that much was obvious. But skimming through her bio, didn't know what to expect. Academic? Idealist? Anarchist? Didn't know whether she'd critique me, or missile a tirade on government conspiracies. But as vocal as Shelley is, definitely not some hothead (probably me projecting). Despite my preconceptions, substituting Judaism with Atheism doesn't equal a froth-mouthed radical. No, purely indicates an ongoing search. Shelley's a believer in using her own insights, rather than swallowing norms. Social activism, and whilst ironic, perchance an antidote to this unruly world (uh, yeah...maybe).
Shelley's individualism also permeates her music. For instance, impossible to assign a genre. Jazz, pop, reggae. Okay, getting warm. But affixing labels: futile. However, a description most definitely ain't: Songs, well-written, composed & executed. Lyrics, bold & unabashed. And Shelley's onstage presence? Angelic voice, heartfelt piano/guitar-playing: resistance is also futile. You might be asking (but probably not): is Shelley a Venus Flytrap? Drawing them in to merely convert? No, Shelley's lyrics are garble in reverse. Shelley Segal (born in Melbourne) is simply being upfront with her audiences. Subject matter, mirroring her own personal transition. Why voice it? Cos it's simultaneously poignant. Advocate for empowerment, her lyrics do just that.
Through my interview, (which I pared to keep my brain from bursting) I learnt several things: Shelley completed a music degree at Box Hill TAFE; has since toured the U.S. 9 times; and recorded in a studio once used by Pink Floyd. Delving deeper, is her firm belief in self-expression. And that by externalizing, we not only validate ourselves, but also help shape the world around us. What intrigued me most however, besides Shelley's radical rebirth, was a seeming divisiveness - yet, ability to effortlessly connect. Whilst many artists opt for neutrality, Shelley denies boundaries. Not implying she's Lady Gaga-like or Eminem-ish. No, on the contrary. Down to earth, sincere, and extremely generous with her 'frans' (first coined by Ella Hooper, frans = friends & fans mashed into one Sex in The City-like slang term). Her franships (take that Ella), not only comprising intimate house concerts, but candy store concerts too!