Barbara Sheree
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Barbara Sheree


Band Pop Adult Contemporary


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"Disappointed but undaunted Phila. choir"

Defeat isn't always agony.
"This is just the beginning," said Frankford's Barbara Kellam, 30, the day after her team, led by Patti LaBelle, finished a disappointing second on NBC's Clash of the Choirs.

Tonight, the 20 singers, handpicked and then driven hard by the city's prima diva, will perform with her live in the Bronx, N.Y. Then they'll join LaBelle at Caesars Atlantic City on New Year's Eve.

The head of a cancer outreach program at the University of Pennsylvania is happy, too.

Although Jessica Simpson's ex, Nick Lachey, and his Cincinnati team won America's votes for the grand prize, $250,000 for that city's Children's Hospital, $50,000 each was awarded to charities on behalf of the other four choirs.

"This is a tremendously generous gift," said Chanita Hughes-Halbert, founder of With Our Voices at the Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania. "It will help us expand our services and continue to offer them to African Americans in Philadelphia."

The cause was personal not only for LaBelle, who lost four sisters to cancer, but also for one of the Philly singers, Rachael Sutliff, a survivor of stage four non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

Of course, not all the talk was of silver linings - especially since many thought Philly deserved the gold.

Including Patti LaBelle.

"It was a rip-off - somebody stole it from me," she said in a phone interview Thursday night just after the show, noting that she'd had the support of fellow choirmasters Michael Bolton and Kelly Rowland.

During the four-night series, another choir leader, country singer Blake Shelton, continually expressed awe, at one point bowing to LaBelle.

Quickly, she sounded more positive notes.

"I'm still a winner, you know what I mean? I'm not taking anything away from Nick Lachey. . . . I'm 63, he's about 2. It's called Clash of the Choirs, not Clash of the Popularity," she said.

The Phillies have already invited her group, dubbed "Patti's Boom Boom Choir," to sing at Citizens Bank Park in March, she said right after the show.

Kellam, who belted out "No More Drama" on Thursday night, praised LaBelle for letting so many members sing lead.

"About half of us were given a chance. That's what I didn't see from the other teams," added Kellam, who goes back to work Monday at USAirways, where she's a customer-service representative.

After singing lead on "I'll Stand by You" Tuesday, a choked-up J'onett DeVeaubray of Philadelphia said her lifelong dream had just come true - being mentored by Patti LaBelle and then sharing a stage with her.

LaBelle said she didn't worry who had pop-star looks, hoping people would "vote for what they hear, not what they see, because that's prejudice."

"I didn't know they could sing lead like that, but they killed it," she said.

"What do mean, how close did I come to tears?" Kellam said yesterday. "I was full of tears. They had to touch my makeup up [Thursday] night three, four times." - Peter Mucha

"A Rising Star"

Absegami grad Barbara Sheree hits the House of Blues stage on Sunday

It has been said that the formula for success is the meeting of opportunity and preparation. For Barbara Sheree, a graduate of Absegami High School, her next opportunity will be opening for Keith Sweat at the House of Blues this holiday weekend (Sunday, Sept. 2, 8pm) in Atlantic City.

The preparation has been in the work that Sheree has done over the past 15 years, giving audiences knock-out performances whether it has been opening for Musiq at Boardwalk Hall, participating in the Ebony Black Family Reunion Tour or appearing in different — and more intimate — venues in the Atlantic City-Philadelphia area.

Sheree is a soulful, special and unique singer-songwriter. Her single “So Right” can be heard on local radio stations WJSE and WLFR. I spoke with Sheree last week, seven days before the biggest night of her life thus far.

How did you get started singing?

I got started at six or seven in church and school. I decided in my 20s in college that my passion wasn’t law, it was music.

What was life like for you at Absegami?

I was heavily involved in every choir at Absegami. In fact, TV40 should have footage of me from the Christmas concerts at the Hamilton Mall.

Back then, did you imagine that one day you’d be opening for an artist with the soul catalogue of Keith Sweat?

I did know that one day I would be performing at places like the House of Blues. One day I’ll be the headliner. I was raised to work hard and achieve my goals.

What’s your approach to songwriting?

When I write, I pull from my own experiences. God has put me in situations so that when I got through I could write and help other people.

I know that you want to write for other artists as well. Are you going to present Mr. Sweat with a CD of some songs written for him?

I wouldn’t mind doing a duet with Mr. Sweat some day. But I haven’t written any songs specifically for him yet. Perhaps after this experience I will have a CD of music written by me especially for him to perform.

Are there any artists that you are currently working with and writing for?

I do plan to write material for other artists in the near future. At this moment I have to focus on my career. There are some artists I’d like to pitch some songs to and work with though.

What are your short-term goals after this show and where do you want to be five years from now?

After [the show], I’m looking forward to the release of my new CD, Love and Life. I will also be having a birthday party on Sept. 6 at The 40/40 Club. Longer-range goals are to play bigger arenas, develop more relationships with other artists, and to work hard to see what type of music recording label deal I can orchestrate. Depending on the offer, I may want to work with an indie label, but I definitely want one that can deliver worldwide distribution.

What do you — as a singer-songwriter — bring to R&B music?

My CD offers hip-hop, some pop, some rock elements. I am diverse. I love Nirvana, Etta James and Jay-Z. I’m not afraid to explore every element of music. I have one new track that reminds me of Bonnie Tyler.

Will you be greeting fans and signing CDs after the show?

That always feels weird because I consider myself just an average person. I’m grateful that people like what I do.

What’s your advice to a student at any of the local high schools who reads this and wants to be the next Barbara Sheree?

Never stop. Don’t let fear ruin your dreams. So many times fear of failure stops us just short of having it all.

You can hear music and contact Sheree at
- Raymond Tyler


Barbara Sheree
Tracks receiving radio play and streaming



Barbara Sheree was recently featured as a member of Patti Labelle's choir on NBC's Clash of the Choirs, on which she performed a solo to Mary J Blige’s "No More Drama" for the show's finale, viewed by over 8 million countrywide. She was the recipient of the Special Wise Words Award at the Alternative Soul Awards held on April 27th, 2008 at the Tropicana Casino. Barbara Sheree has been singing and writing for the past 15 years.

She got her start singing on her school choir at the tender age of eight. By the time she was 13, she was singing on several school and local community choirs as a soloist. It was then that Sheree tried her hand at writing poetry. Her love for writing was no small hobby; collaborating with established writers such as Donald Robinson and Damon Bennett.

She has both opened for and performed on the same stage as Patti Labelle, Keith Sweat, Yolanda Adams, Lisa Lisa, Doug E. Fresh, Musiq and Kem. She participated in both the Pantene Total You Tour and the Ebony Black Family Reunion Tour. In short, Barbara Sheree is a young, gifted talent who is bound to inspire many with her writing and captivate the world with a voice so amazing that it commands attention.

Her music is distributed by CD Baby and can be found on over 60 of the most popular digital download sites including Apple ITunes. Barbara has performed all over the Tri-State area in many venues including Black Lily, Soul Sanctuary, Arcadia University, Philadelphia International Airport, North By Northwest, Tropicana Casino, Boardwalk Hall, Sugar Bar and House of Blues.