Alana Stewart
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Alana Stewart

New York City, New York, United States

New York City, New York, United States
Band World Singer/Songwriter

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"Miss Alana Stewart Serenades The Old Queen's Head, London!"

I heard Miss Alana Stewart’s song “perfervid” one afternoon. You know the routine- I get a lot of music thrown at me so I clicked play and got back on with my work not thinking twice. As soon as the track started though Stewart’s voice was so successfully piercing that I paused just to focus on her range, the unavoidable longing in her addictive voice was hard to ignore, and before I knew it one track had turned into five, and without realizing it- I was hooked.

My first show in London, and one public transport ride and three flights of stairs later and I was sitting across from Stewart, innocently spinning in a chair as we prepped for our interview, and off we went! - Best New Bands


"Review: Alana Stewart - Momma Says"

Brooklyn based songstress Alana Stewart is causing a stir in the industry. Figures from Steve Lamacq to Lauren Laverne are marveling at her quirky blend of soul and pop, and back in the States she is selling out the intimate venues where she plies her trade.
A lot of this excitement and expectation is down to new single 'Momma Says'. Led by a plonky, cheery piano riff that recalls Reginna Spektor’s classic 'Fidelity', 'Momma Says' is an anthem for the indecisive youth. The lyric concerns the perennial question of which path to take, do we take our parents advice and settle down to a 9 to 5, or do we stick it to the man, hop a train and hit up Europe. I know which I would rather do, but Stewart seems fairly skeptical of both options, concluding to ‘follow your heart, either way.’
The track is rich with gorgeous sentimentality, and soars when the plodding rhythm is replaced with the more mournful arpeggios of the chorus. She certainly wears her influences on her sleeve, evoking some of the great contemporary female artists, from Feist to Lykke Li, but maintains her own sound and identity without ever sounding contrived.
'Momma Says' is shamelessly poppy, and will undoubtedly receive plenty of radio attention in time, but it is at it’s best as a track with it’s occasional moments of sincere introspection. ‘What will I teach her, what will I teach her?’ inquires Stewart when contemplating her own future parenthood in the most poignant moment of the song. 'Momma Says' is a fun, soulful and rich start to a very promising career. Watch this space.
- Pop Fodder


"ARTIST OF THE WEEK : ALANA STEWART"

Alana Stewart is an amazing soulful, singer and songwriter from New York. Though her music appears to be simplistic, the emotion and soul behind it isn't. Any musician that can portray that through their music deserves the talent that they have been given. On the 27th Of June she released her incredible E.P The misuse of Chemistry with Chess Club (a label that has exposed a lot of alternative acts such as Mumford and Sons, Local natives and Group lovers), After listening to her music you can't help but feel relaxed and calm, that is why I truly believe she is an act to watch out for in the future. Her E.P is currently out; you can purchase it by clicking on this link: http://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/the-misuse-of-chemistry/id446147397 Intrigued by her rather interesting story, i wanted to know more about Alana, so i decided to get in touch with her and interview her! , have a read about how this young girl went from busking to being an established singer. - Glamorous Indie Rock & Roll


"Alana Stewart – Perfervid // Song Of The Day #272"

Alana Stewart makes the kind of music that slows the world down, the shadows lengthening and the colour fading until the image cracks a little at the edges. Now signed to London’s Chess Club label, the twenty-two year old singer/songwriter was discovered entrancing nocturnal audiences of commuters and insomniacs on the platforms and corridors of New York subways, her languorous sound a salve for the city’s fatigues.

‘Perfervid’ showcases Stewart’s talents well, paring back the instrumentation to foreground her voice, coiled and restrained and – appropriately, given the song’s title – shivering with passion. It’s a riposte to a society in perpetual acceleration, where attention spans flicker like neon signs above seedy bars and art lies in thrall to commerce, her sultry, post-coital vocals flecked with darker hues and tinged with defiance. - The Line of Best Fit


"Interview #682: Alana Stewart"

After handing her university lecturers mixtapes of her own songs as Christmas presents, Alana Stewart was a little taken back when they suggested she pursue a songwriting career instead of continuing with her studies. Dropping out against the wishes of her mother, Alana went on to busk across the States, supplementing her waitressing income with the money she picked up each day. Eventually discovered by her manager while busking in the New York subway, Alana is now set to release The Misuse of Chemistry EP, a five track collection of lo-fi pop melodies released via Chess Club, home to Mumford and Sons, White Lies, Local Natives, Grouplove and more.

I Like Music caught up with Alana to chat about the EP, her experimental approach to recording, busking across the States and her plans for the future... - I Like Music


"Bands To Watch #209: Alana Stewart"

At just 22 years of age, Brooklyn songstress Alana Stewart was discovered busking on the New York subway. Since then she has been signed by London indie record label Chess Club, who are gearing up to release her new single ‘Momma Says’ on the 27th of June. Since the start of 2011, she has been finding her feet in the UK and has garnered attention from BBC 6Music and Radio 1's Steve Lamacq. Despite her rise in popularity in our fair isle, she is continuing to busk in the subway.

‘Momma Says’ is an homage to teenage girls everywhere. Struggling with growing up and wanting to rebel, but should you listen to your mother? In a Kate Nash-style, one-woman show, Alana Stewart is a great example of a female singer/songwriter who has a real passion for her music. Armed with a guitar, a piano and a unique voice, Stewart is destined to go far.

Her track ‘When The Wind Blows’ is almost 3 minutes of lo-fi, twee, acoustic loveliness. The sound at times is reminiscent of Warpaint, the simple guitar and drums combo keeps you focused on the vocals which can be both powerful and delicate. Imagine the whole Juno soundtrack rolled into one musician, and you’ve got Alana Stewart. With her fantastic vocal range and musical talent, coupled with her passion, it’s hard not to be impressed with a woman who could be the hottest property in acoustic music everywhere. Still not convinced? Watch her in action in the video for ‘Perfervid’ below. - There Goes The Fear


"First Look: Alana Stewart's "Momma Says""

If you're looking for the next big thing in music, look no further. Alana Stewart, a bluesy singer-songwriter who was discovered busking in the subway stations of NYC, is set to release her new EP, The Misuse of Chemistry, in July and we've got the exclusive premiere of the lead single, "Momma Says": Of the song Stewart says, "'Momma Says' is an anthem for 17-year-old girls everywhere on the cusp of the big life question young adults everywhere are forced to make: WTF am I supposed to do with my life? Should I listen to - OUT Magazine


"Atomic Bombs Are Good (Maybe)"

Alana Stewart is originally from New Mexico, not far from where they tested all those atomic bombs. I think that was probably a bit before her time, but may be all that radioactive dust has had an effect? I mean, look at that photo, you telling me that normal people’s eyes are that bright? Hmmmm that’s some genetic X-Men shit right there. What’s her super power though? Writing and singing beautiful songs of course!! (Personally for me it would have to be a toss up between lazer eyes or invisibility.)



It’s with great pleasure I present ya’ll with an EXCLUSIVE free download of one of Alana’s simply gorgeous tunes! Seriously, you lot really are spoilt:



Alana – When the Wind Blows



Alana is in the UK at the beginning of December, you can catch her at Notting Hill Arts Club on the 5th or the The Hideaway in Archway on 9th. For those of you who don’t live in London or are too goddamn fat/lazy/poor/stoopid to leave the house check out the fab video below: - My Bands Better Than Your Band


"Siren Rising: Interview With Alana Stewart"

Meet a girl who could very well be the next big thing in music.

With traffic-stopping pipes and ambitious lyrics, Alana Stewart is nothing short of brilliant. The Williamsburg-based singer sounds like a cross between Fiona Apple and Jolie Holland.

Watch the video "Perfervid" here and then read the interview. Prepare to be blown away. - Eye Shadow Government Blog


"Get In Line For: Alana Stewart"

My favorite days are the ones where we come across something special. Music that is emotionally charged and constructed perfectly. In Alana Stewart, we found a musician that ought to be massive in 2011. To compare her to someone like Regina Spektor would lead us astray from her real touchstones, the works of Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday. We are so pleased to be able bring you the world premiere of her first video, Perfervid. As writer Amy so correctly assessed while interviewing Alana, this song is one of the best we’ve heard in years. Period.
- The Dumbing of America


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

Photos

Bio

Alana Stewart was born on the anniversary of the first atomic bomb, in the nearest town to the test site of the first atomic bomb- July 16th, in Alamogordo, NM. Whilst still in art school she recorded a demo of songs in her friend's living room and gave them out as end-of-the semester presents to professors. Three of those professors proceeded to encourage her to (at least temporarily) drop out of school to pursue music. So she did.

Alana’s music has always been more critically acclaimed than her art, but she had always taken her talent for music for granted and therefore didn't value it enough- even since she was a small child. She recalls how when graduating from elementary school there were five awards given to five privileged students. One for science, one for maths, one for athletics, one for art, and one for music. ‘I desperately wanted the award for Art. To this day I love drawing- especially people and architecture’. Alana was massively disappointed when her name wasn't announced for the Art award. Then to her complete surprise moments later she found myself accepting an award for musical talent- ‘It was bitter-sweet, due to my disappointment not receiving the Art award’. Finally I've succumbed to the fact that people like my music more, and I'm very happy to be making lots of it.’

She began making more ambitious recordings with a higher scrutiny for lyrics and melody after a humiliating experience with a French man. She was a sophomore in university and back-packing my way through Europe completely alone when she found herself in Paris, couchsurfing with a Dutch journalist. She was showing him and his friend (a successful local Parisian architect) the same recordings she gave to her professors earlier in the year. The French architect laughed in her face and told her how horrible the songs sounded - he made fun of the key tones, the recording quality and the laziness of the lyrics. She was completely humiliated- ‘I was so used to getting complimented on my voice I didn't know how to react’. But it was a blessing: ‘No single person has influenced my eager pursuit of quality song-writing/recording as he has. My motto since then has been "higher standards". And I think it's been working’

Alana counts herself as influenced by Gospel music (Alana’s grandparents sang in church when she was a child) and inspired by the all-ages concerts they took her to- ‘concerts that lacked pretension, and aimed to gift a cathartic experience to the audience’. Moreover she draws inspiration from pop and R&B hits of the 90's- professing to sometimes use a refrain from a one-hit-wonder radio tune in her songs just because the chord progression reminds her of it and it seems appropriate to include. ‘I'm influenced by my jazz vocal training- the miracle of voices like Ella Fitzgerald and Eva Cassidy, and of course by the cities I've lived in: San Francisco, New Orleans, Reykjavik, New York’.

Alana hopes her EP and album releases find their way into people's road trip playlists and journey mixes. ‘I would love for my songs to have a positive influence on the decisions and discoveries people make while they're in segue. I hope the lyrics help them make the right choices and realize new things about themselves’. One thing is for sure - their melodies look set to make their spines tingle while they get to wherever it is they're going.