Chastity Brown arrives in North Carolina on July 23 to perform in Durham at the Pin Hook. Soon after, she will visit Charlotte’s Evening Muse on July 26, both stops on a tour that ranges across the country through summer and fall. A combination of soul, folk and R&B, her music is driven by her identity.
“What I’ve realized is that the personal is political,” Brown told writer Jewly Hight. “Just by being a bi-racial, half-black, half-white woman living in America right now is political. Just being a person of color, a queer woman of color for that matter, is freaking political.”
Brown’s political appeal, tied to lyricism and a striking voice, has been recognized internationally. NPR featured Brown’s new album, “Silhouette of Sirens,” on its First Listens series. She spent much of last year touring Europe alongside Ani DiFranco, appearing in the London Times and on U.K. TV in Later…with Jools Holland.
The appeal of Brown’s music isn’t limited to popularity, of course. The singer’s record label, Red House Records, describes the creation of Sirens as “weaving together a poet’s lyrical ear and a soul-laid-bare quality.” Brown herself owns the introspective qualities of her work and channels them purposefully.
“My focus, as far as this record, I guess it’s really been psychological,” she said. “I’m really intrigued by the perseverance of the human spirit and the complexities and contradictions that we embody as human beings.”
This is exactly why Brown’s work speaks to the LGBTQ community and other marginalized groups. But don’t take my word for it — take a listen on Soundcloud or watch her video for the single “Carried Away.”
If you like what you hear, go ahead and shell out the $10-12 for tickets to one of Brown’s North Carolina shows.
“[James Baldwin] says, ‘I tell you my pain so that I might relieve you of yours.’ I write for and from the marginalized experience,” Brown explained. “For the truly triumphant spirit that’s been through some shit, and has fought her/his way through it to maintain a sense of dignity and peace of mind.”