Andrea Wasse
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Andrea Wasse

Band Alternative Singer/Songwriter

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Aug
30
Andrea Wasse @ Room 5

Los Angeles, California, USA

Los Angeles, California, USA

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Kathleen Smith/Dave Lichens/Libbie Schrader/Andrea Wasse, Room 5, Los Angeles. July 7, 2007
I can't pretend that this entry was not precluded by a mild, frenzied panic on this mobile blogger's end. Without a Billboard sponsored show on the calendar for me this weekend, I was planning on seeing a local artist who had been selected by an unnamed rival magazine as one of MySpace's Top 25 artists on my own dime tonight. Unfortunately, I discovered at the last minute that the venue misprinted their calendar, leaving me to spend the weekend either reading "Pledged: The Secret Life of Sororities" or watching "Everyday Italian," furthering my crush on Food Network hottie Giada de Laurentiis. While this wasn't an altogether unpleasant prospect, I was skeptical that the good folks at Billboard would publish a blog entirely about a mild-mannered Asian kid's fantasies of sorority girls and tiny Italian chefs with inexplicably magnificent cleavage.

I decided that somehow, someway, I was going to go out and find a show to cover for the Mobile Beat tonight. At the expense of a friend's birthday party (happy birthday, Mar), it was time for me to step out from under the umbrella (ella...ella...ella... ey...ey...ey...) of my Ryan Seacrest-encrusted comfort zone to check out some local artists....




....Closing out the night was Canadian musician Andrea Wasse, who was joined on stage by my favorite artist of the night, Dave Lichens. Wasse's modest stage demeanor and appreciation for the audience's applause was apparent. Of all the night's performers, Wasse might have had the most "pop friendly" voice, despite the fact that she was fighting through sickness to perform. While not her personal favorite song, I thoroughly enjoyed "Calling You Out," which easily sounded like a radio hit or the song you always want to become a single on your favorite artist's CD. Wasse joked after the show that the song's use of high notes made her sing like a "12 year old girl," but it could have easily become a popular Michelle Branch track with its catchy melody.

Wasse's eight song set may have included the performance of the night. Libbie Schrader requested that Wasse perform "Perfect World," a song that Wasse performed to win the Pantene Pro-Voice competition that Schrader had won the year before. When Wasse couldn't remember all the chords to the song she wrote years ago, Schrader came on stage to play the piano for the song from her own memory. Together, Wasse and Schrader found the chords on the guitar and piano respectively, and Lichens fed off the two artists, playing by ear to join in on a fun song for everyone in attendance. Together, the three artists put together an impromptu performance that never could have taken place at a larger concert, and it was a great way to culminate what I took out of the night.
Obviously, tonight's concert was not the mainstream, radio friendly music that I am used to listening to. However, it was a refreshing change to see four talented MUSICIANS - all of whom wrote their own unique songs, played their own instruments, and truly owned their own style. All of the artists featured tonight perform fairly regularly on the West Coast and throughout the Los Angeles area, and all have MySpace followings that I look forward to being a part of as well. Tonight was about expanding my musical tastes in a random, "So You Think You Can Dance"-like manner, and it was a nice opportunity for me to discover some up and coming musicians who were not only all incredibly personable and gracious, but talented as well. For anyone else in the LA area who's been bitten by the mainstream bug, I'd encourage you to check these amazing artists out or discover them online!

I never thought I'd see the day where I was ok with skipping out on a lovely evening with Giada de Laurentiis and her "Everyday Italian" good looks and/or food, but this was one of those days.
- Mobile Beat- Billboard.com


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

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Bio

At the same age (18) most girls are starting to consider what to do with their lives - or at least the next four years - Andrea Wasse was signing a deal with EMI Publishing. Teenage innocence and experience combined to fuel Andrea's first record with The Weekend, the band she fronted for almost ten years. Unlike most singers writing about the tribulations of youth, Andrea wasn't filtering her feelings through time's great equalizer. Unlike a lot of young women who have something to say, but falter when it comes to expressing themselves, Andrea had a guitar and a voice and she knew how to use 'em.

For 10 years Andrea sharpened her writing and performing skills as the focal point of The Weekend (www.myspace.com/rocktheweekend), a band with three albums under its studded belt. While the band underwent a number of line-up changes, Andrea remained constant, leading her crew around the world in the process.

With The Weekend, Andrea's songs were heard from stages and on movie screens; she had fans in Japan, Australia and Indonesia, where she played to 100,000 people days before the tsunami left the country devastated. However, in 2006, she realized that she no longer wanted to compete to be heard over the drums and, after spending time in California visiting friends, she took the plunge and headed there for new experiences.

Los Angeles gave Andrea a new perspective, a chance to grow up and a wealth of new topics to write about. She has ditched her teen angst and the comfort of volume in exchange for a sparser and far more intimate sound. Her new songs are the work of a confident woman letting you catch a glimpse of her life.

While Andrea has always had a flair for a melody, now there's no mistaking that her voice is the real hook. Honest and sexy, soft and direct, Andrea sounds best when she doesn't have to scream to be heard. Randy Bachman once told her she had his dream voice and who are we to argue with that?