Five Questions With Alyssa Tess

20-year-old singer-songwriter, Alyssa Tess took some time from her schedule to chat with us for our newest segment of Five Questions With! Alyssa will be releasing her new EP, Twenty/Twenty on October 14, so be sure to keep an eye out for that, and we hope you enjoy learning more about this up & coming, Canadian artist.

Care to introduce yourself to our readers?

Hi! I’m Alyssa Tess and I’m a 20-year-old singer-songwriter from the Georgian Bay area. I was born and raised in Midland, ON and I currently live in Midhurst, ON. I am an avid performer throughout Barrie, ON and the GTA. My family says I started singing before I could talk. The first time I performed for an audience was when I was 7 at a local singing competition and shortly after that, I began writing my own songs. Since then, songwriting and performing has been a huge part of my life. This year I’ve been working on creating my first professionally produced EP “Twenty/Twenty”. I’m super excited for it to be released this fall!

Tell us a bit about your music and writing style.

My music is a collection of experiences and emotions. I am strongly influenced by how I feel and I use those feelings to create my songs. Songwriting is a way to release things that I would normally keep pent up inside. So first, I have to have a strong emotion about something. I follow it by picking up my guitar or sitting at my piano and finding a chord progression or melody. Once I find that the lyrics just seem to come.

Do you have any upcoming shows? For someone who has yet to see you live, how would you explain your live performance?

I have a handful of upcoming shows this fall in Barrie and Toronto. I play a lot of local restaurants, cafes and bars as well as the occasional resort. The show that I am most looking forward to though is my “Twenty/Twenty” EP Release show happening at the Midhurst Community Centre on October 14, 2017, from 7-11pm. When you see me live, you’ll usually find me and my acoustic guitar up on stage. Occasionally I bring out my foot tambourine, stompbox and a friend to sing harmony. I play a lot of my originals but I also incorporate popular covers in my sets. Encouraging audience participation and sing-alongs is always a must. I love connecting with the audience!

If you were asked to suggest only one of your songs for someone to hear, which would it be?

I would have to suggest the song that is nearest and dearest to my heart right now, “My Guitar”.  I just released this folk-pop single in August and it’s the story behind my first guitar (the guitar you see in all my photos). My mom bought the guitar from an older gentleman who absolutely loved it but sadly could no longer play due to his arthritis. He had only one condition for selling the guitar and that was the promise that it would be played. Through the years, this guitar has passed through the hands of everyone in my family. It has brought so much music into my life. “My Guitar” is my way of saying thank you to this man that I never got the pleasure to meet or thank. You can find “My Guitar” on iTunes, Spotify, Google music and many other music platforms.

Canadian Beats is all about Canadian music, so who are your current favourite Canadian bands/ artists?

Currently, I’m really getting into Ruth B and Ria Mae’s music. I really like Ruth B’s songwriting and Ria Mae just has such a cool voice. I’m also a fan of Serena Ryder, Sarah Slean and the groups Dala and The Good Lovelies. They’re all definitely inspirations.

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