Jasmine Tate
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Jasmine Tate

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2013 | SELF

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2013
Band Folk Singer/Songwriter


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Jasmine Tate Releases Brilliant Debut"

Ask people how they started playing music and you generally get a fairly mundane response about how they were inspired by such and such an artist or how mom or dad played music around the house growing up.

And then there's Jasmine Tate, whose story has a touch of divine inspiration.

"I found myself in this crazy series of situations where people were having dreams about me being a singer/performer and preachers would call me out in churches or different events to tell me I was going to sing and be a performer," she says. "It happened so many times that one day I decided I was going to say 'Yes' to this seemingly unending call to do music."

This was in the spring of 2010, while she was still back home in Columbus, Ohio. There was no room in her life for music to become her primary pursuit right away, though, as she was about to take a full basketball scholarship at Robert Morris University, where she played all four years.

Nonetheless, she got right to work on that calling.

"I loved music, but I hated my voice and didn't think I could sing at all," she says. "It's pretty crazy, too, but I swear to you, God taught me how to play. It's the only way I know how to explain it. One day I was in my room and I was just finding chords."

She started with an e-minor she learned on YouTube and went from there. "I started writing my own songs that day because I already wrote poetry. So I have some funky chords in the first songs I ever wrote and I still don't know all of the chords I play."

At RMU, she broke up her basketball/class routine by playing open mic nights around 2011, but music was still on the back burner. "It was really important to be fully committed to my team while I was on the team. So it felt like a sacrifice at the moment for sure, but it was worth it," she says.

Based on her debut EP, which peaked at No. 9 on the iTunes charts in the singer-songwriter genre, it's no surprise where the soulful Tate found her musical inspiration.

"I loved Lauryn Hill probably more than any other artist. I wouldn't say I ever tried to emulate her, but a lot of her style/vibe has definitely come out in my songwriting."

From the Fugees, Tracy Chapman and gospel came the inspiration to fill her music with heart, substance and powerful messages.

"As a child, I woke up to my mom blaring gospel music through the house on Sunday mornings," she says. "I remember thinking how awesome it was that people wrote music that gave people a desire to fight/press on in life. So, once I started writing, I decided I wanted to write music that would inspire people and give them some fuel to fight with when things get tough."

One of her most potent songs is "Believer," a dark tale of a woman looking back on a sexual assault as a child and desperately looking to God for answers.

" 'Believer' is actually based off of a storyline that I had a vision of one time while I was playing those chords," she says. "It was like a mini movie that played in my head. It's a super heavy song, but I love playing it publicly because it's super raw and it's usually someone's story. Each and every time I play it, someone comes up to me afterwards to let me know that it really brought healing to them concerning the situation."

Another standout is "Just Wanna Know," a hip-hop/rock track about an absent father and a kid making her own way, complete with sly shout-outs to Marvin Gaye and Kanye West: "Hey Marvin, what's going on?/The American Dream, it isn't what it seems/The prettiest people/Do the ugliest things (Hey Kanye)/Family in shreds/Working 9 to 5 just to get the latest threads."

"It's largely based off of my story," she says. "However, I wanted to write a song that explored something that I believe everyone goes through."

After graduating last May, she chose to stay here rather than return to Columbus, saying, "I definitely fell in love with this city, but I also recognized the amazing opportunities that are here as an artist. There's just a tremendous arts community here."

The music community, here and nationally, has embraced her in a big way, funding a $20,000 Kickstarter campaign that allowed her to go bigger with her new full-length debut album, "Life and Love."

The stripped-down solo acoustic sound from her EP is gone in favor of indie-rock treatments that give her songs shimmering atmosphere and a jolt of electricity. It was recorded at Iron Wing Studios in Covington, Ky., with Brandon Weaver, a producer she met through a friend after her Pittsburgh studio session fell through.

"I wanted to go with a full sound because it's always been part of the goal and vision for me," she says. "I often write songs and hear the other instruments, but like most artists, I wanted to finally get out some of what I've been hearing."

"Working with Jasmine was a complete joy and adventure," the producer says. "I would forewarn the musicians that came in to play on the record, the ones that didn't know her, saying, 'Jasmine is a real free spirit. This isn't going to be like any other record you've worked on. Just go with it.' She writes and sings with a passion and conviction that is truly rare, and her vision was never in short supply."

She releases "Life and Love" the record on May 1, but there will be a release party Friday at 720 Music, Clothing and Cafe in Lawrenceville with a chance to hear the album and buy a hard copy. It's the kickoff of a 10-date national tour with singer-guitarist Joel Ansett.

"We also have a percussionist that will play with us," she says. "There will also be a local artist that will be doing live painting at every show during the performances and a local dancer who will join us on most of the tour. She will also perform at most of the venues as we perform. So, it will be a multifaceted expression of creativity at every show. We are completely flipping the typical tour model."

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/ae/music/2014/04/03/Meet-Jasmine-Tate/stories/201404030138#ixzz38zYNHM7u - Pittsburgh Post Gazette

"Jasmine Tate Finds Music To Be A Calling"

It's a Wednesday night, and Jasmine Tate hits the stage at Eclipse Lounge's open-mic night wearing a sweatshirt that simply says: "Genius." On some it might seem like hubris, but on Tate it seems fitting; the 22-year-old is quiet and unassuming, but commands the healthy crowd with her confidence, pipes and courageous and clever songwriting. Tate is young, but used to being in the spotlight — just not always for her music, though.

"I came to Robert Morris on a full basketball scholarship," the Columbus, Ohio, native explains. She played parts of all four years, but faced injuries in her junior and senior years; she graduated last year, but had already grown into her new passion, music.

"It was a completely new deal," she recalls. "I'd moved to Pittsburgh to study corporate communications, and media and the arts have always been my thing; I've been really passionate about it. My freshman year, my friends and family members kept having dreams — they'd have dreams of me, on a stage, playing guitar and singing. They kept telling me, it kept happening, and I'd say, ‘I don't really know what to tell you; I don't play an instrument, I don't even like the sound of my voice, so, that's just not gonna happen.'"

She has had multiple experiences, she says, wherein she'd be at church — different churches — and be singled out to sing. It all kept pointing to something.

"That kind of stuff just kept happening," she says. "Finally, four years ago this month, I was with my mentor, she's a lawyer, and she told me: ‘Jasmine, you can either say yes to God — because clearly there's some weird God thing going on here — and he'll show you how to do it, probably, or you can say no, and he'll probably find someone else to do it.' And I thought, that's so lame! I don't want somebody else to get it because I'm scared and don't know how to do it!"

So Tate — with no real music training, learning by ear — set out to start playing in public, first at open-mic nights at Robert Morris, then eventually at bigger venues in the city. She drew from singer-songwriter traditions as well as hip hop; she notes Tracy Chapman and Lauryn Hill both as major inspirations, and those do shine through.

As she built her repertoire, she began to build a network as well.

"Not being from here, I had to find a way to get connected to everybody," she says. Outside of college, she started playing a café in Grove City, where she lived during the summer. Then she took her show to venues in town, hooking in with artists and scene fixtures like Jacquea Mae and Nate Mitchell, from 720 Music, Clothing and Café. She eventually developed a close bond with singer-songwriter Joel Ansett, with whom she's about to kick off a tour that'll go a little different from most artists' tours.

"We didn't set out to do something different — it's not like we woke up and said, ‘Let's come up with a new model!"' she says with a laugh. "But we both carry similar hearts behind our music: love, and hope. We want people to know there's more than just this 9-to-5 thing people get so stuck in. And we felt like the normal model for [touring] was not congruent to the message we had. We want to talk about loving people; both of us are very relational."

"Relational" is a word Tate uses a lot — not as a fallback, but as a central tenet of her music and life. To her, making a one-night stop in a town doesn't help her relate to the people there, or vice versa. Stopping for a week at a time in each city? That's relational.

"Instead of going night-to-night, I believe the shortest we'll be in a city is three days, all the way up to two weeks — I think our trip to Minnesota is our longest one," she says. "In every city, we'll do a regular venue, a house show and something like a high school or church or nursing home — something like that.

"We're doing it that way because we obviously want to hit a regular venue for people who enjoy coming out to a show, but we wanted to do a house show as well, because a lot of time people invite friends and family to a house show — we want to build those relationships."

The tour is called Life and Love, named for the new album Tate releases with a show Fri., April 4, at 720 Music, Clothing and Café; it's her first full-length. It's a fully orchestrated set of songs with a social conscience; Tate, even with her effervescent personality, isn't afraid to take on topics that are difficult to listen to. (One of her best-known songs, "Believer," is about the sexual assault of a child; as she began to describe it before the Eclipse open-mic, host Henry Bachorski chimed in to note that it made him cry the first time he heard it.)

"I have this conviction that people are wired for depth," she says. "We all try to stay at this shallow place, typically, but if you really cut to the chase, everybody's looking for depth in life. You can sit at a bar and talk to somebody and people will pour out their life story. I want to talk about the things that nobody else wants to talk about. If you can reach into that core, I think you can really inspire somebody, compel them to love, open up their ability to receive love." - Pittsburgh City Paper


Still working on that hot first release.



Jasmine Tate is a Pittsburgh based singer/songwriter with a flair for creating one-on-one encounters with each audience member. In the summer of 2013, Jasmine successfully raised $20,000 in 30 days through Kickstarter for her debut studio album, Life and Love, with $13,000 coming in the last three days. The project also consists of a video series and a tour. The Life and Love album was released digitally on May 6th and the tour took place from April 4th to July 20th. On its debut, the album rushed to the Top 20 on iTunes within the singer/songwriter charts. The album includes the five songs from the Jasmine Tate EP and more. Each song is fully produced with sounds of the electric guitar, violin, drums, keys, etc. Life and Love is Jasmine's first shot at releasing the sounds that have been brewing in her heart for the last four years. And the response has been great, with voices like fellow singer/songwriter Joy Ike saying,”…[Her] music and presence are necessary in our culture. Ears will be pleasantly surprised and hearts will come to life!” Her first solo project, The Jasmine Tate EP, debuted at #9 on the iTunes singer/songwriter charts, passing releases by Sheryl Crow, Simon & Garfunkel, and Ben Rector, to name a few. “I knew something crazy was going to happen with the charts, I just didn’t know what.”
Her music is relatable and inspirational to a generation seeking hope and finding ashes. Each song, from the flirtacious, yet certain “A Thousand Ways” to the heavy and heartbreaking “Believer,” carries a promise of love that might just be strong enough to make an audience lower their masks for a minute and receive. “I dream of writing songs that lead people into Love. And I believe what I write about.”
Following in the sonic and social footsteps of Tracy Chapman and Lauryn Hill, Jasmine has spent the past three years bringing heartfelt songs of life, love and justice to college campuses and coffee shops throughout America, building a solid fan base and brand. Whether she’s performing in front of thousands on national television or dozens in a coffee shop to raise awareness for human trafficking, the goal is always the same – to infuse each person with hope and hunger for the “more” in life. “I want every song to feel like a one-on-one, heart-to-heart moment between the listener and I. With that said… I really just want to touch those who are living without color.”

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