Kilissa Cissoko

Kilissa Cissoko

 Buffalo, New York, USA
SoloRockSinger/Songwriter

Classically trained and soulfully syncopated, Kilissa Cissoko is a tuneful and observant songwriter with comparisons to Carole King and Adele.

Biography

Classically trained and soulfully syncopated, Kilissa Cissoko is a tuneful and observant songwriter with comparisons to Carole King and Adele.

Originally from Baltimore and raised in Chicago, Kilissa now makes her home in Buffalo, NY. In the 1990's she worked as an independent songwriter and performing artist with a variety of groups and was featured at major venues and festivals in the US and abroad. After a hiatus for motherhood, she is currently writing and recording material as a solo artist and is developing a new work for musical theater.

Also an innovative music educator, Cissoko earned her BFA and EdM degrees in music from the State University of New York. She was Executive Director of the MUSE Artists in Education program, founded the Tiny Tunes Early Childhood Music Program, and currently teaches Elementary Music (K-4) in the Buffalo Public Schools. She serves as a mentor teacher and curriculum writer for the district. Her focus is on Creativity in Music Education.

Kilissa has a gift for melody and a razor sharp skill for honing compelling lyrics. Her music blends many influences and as a performer she naturally engages the audience.

Lyrics

Any Other Girl

Written By: Kilissa Cissoko

Any Other Girl
©2006 Kilissa Cissoko (BMI)

I’m just like any other girl
I want what any other girl wants
I’m just like any other girl
I want you to love me all through the night

I’ve got my job, my money, my apartment, my car
I’ve got my education, my profession,
Got my friends and my family
It’s all lined up right here for me
So what have you got to give to me?

I’m just like any other girl
I want what any other girl wants
I’m just like any other girl
I want you to love me all through the night

I don’t need a man to take care of me
Don’t need someone to watch over me
I need a friend, a confidante
A lover, a companion
I need you to be a mirror to my soul

But I don’t want this to be
Too complicated
Don’t think about it too much
Don’t let me overstate it
‘Cause tonight, baby
I just want you

I’m just like any other girl
I want what any other girl wants
I’m just like any other girl
I want you to love me all through the night

Don't

Written By: Kilissa Cissoko

©2007 Kilissa Cissoko (BMI)

Don’t
Say you won’t
Give me hope
Don’t you think I’ve waited long enough?
They say time
heals all wounds
So slowly I put myself back together
But at least I took a chance on love

After all is said—I still have more to say
Once you held me in your arms,
but now you push me away.
Don’t push me away.

I wish you would soothe me
Move me
Don’t ever again hide the truth from me
‘Cause we can’t forget the things we know
When it’s right
It’s such a beautiful sight
A glorious flight
But at least we took a chance…

on loving
on trusting
on giving of ourselves
on coming close
in our restless dreams
uncovering
our deepest needs
on laying bare
our tender souls
on reaching out
for a hand to hold…

After all is said—I still have more to say
I loved how you held me in your arms,
but I cried when you pushed me away
Don’t push me away.

Why?
Do you think that I
wouldn’t give my life
to look through you?
Do you think that I would let you down?
What do you need
from me?
I can’t see…
But at least I took a chance….

Bring A Little Joy

Written By: Kilissa Cissoko

©2006 Kilissa Cissoko (BMI)

Bring a little joy to the world
Bring a little joy to the world
Bring a little love and affection
Compassion, connection
When we see the cup overflow
Then that’s how we’ll know
We each brought a little joy
To the world

Bring a little joy to the world
Bring a little joy to the world
Bring a little hope and emotion
Passion, devotion
When you feel your heart all a-flutter
And you're hugging
and kissing one another
Yes, you know you brought a little joy
To the world

It might be a little thing
That you say or that you do
It might be a stranger
Or somebody close to you
You may never know
What you’ve done or who you’ve moved
But with one little, one little, act of kindness
The world can be improved.

Bring a little joy to the world
Bring a little joy to the world
Bring a little wonder and delight
And it'll all turn out alright
When you see the rain coming down
And hear the thunder
when the lightening hits the ground
We could all use a little joy
In the world
Bring a little joy to the world.

Oh Life

Written By: Kilissa Cissoko

Oh-oh, life is a struggle in this run-down town
Oh-oh, life is a struggle in this run-down town

You try to look up, but it’s bringing you down
Try to go faster, but it’s slowing you down
You’re lucky to miss the unemployment line
But keep up your guard, because that was “this time”
The world doesn’t have any sympathy
For a declining, failing economy
Some would look to the Indian Nation,
And they’d gamble the future on the Reservation…

This is America but you might think it was the Third World.

Oh-oh, life is a struggle in this run-down town
I’m telling you, oh-oh, life is a struggle in this run-down town

How many houses are crumbling and rickety
Not two blocks from great prosperity?
Makes you wonder what the politician’s thinking
Even rats would leave a ship that’s sinking
How many children can you cram
In one class and expect them to pass the math exam?
If everybody says, “I’m leaving,”
Who’s gonna stick around for dreaming and believing?

This is America but you might think it was the Third World.

Oh-oh, life is a struggle in this run-down town
I’m telling you, oh-oh, life is a struggle in this run-down town
Oh-oh, life is a struggle in this run-down town
Hear what I say, oh-oh, life is this struggle in a run-down town

In this run-down town
In this beaten down town
In this pushed around, down on the ground town, scurrying around town
Buried underground town
Don’t hear a sound town

This is America but you might think it was the Third World

Patience

Written By: Kilissa Cissoko

When I can’t get everything done in one day
I gotta be patient with myself
Because there’s only so many hours in a day
No, I can’t expect to finish it all in one day
Even god needed seven days
Or so they say

Well you know –I don’t worry too much what other people say
But I shouldn’t be so hard on myself
though that’s easier to say
And I know I could take the advice they say
But no matter what I say
Still gotta make it through the day

November 6, 2007
©2007 Cissoko (BMI)

Boy

Written By: Kilissa Cissoko

Boy, you sure know what to say to me
All your sweetness gonna set me free
And when you tell me what you want to do
You've got me thinking that your love is true
And that's a lot
You wanna give me what you've got?
Come on, baby, give it a shot.

Boy, you sure know what to say to me
You make me feel like I'm a masterpiece
You're so smooth, you set my mind at ease
I'd follow you across the seven seas
And back again
I'd never worry where or when
I'd hope this story never ends

There I go again with hard feelings
and weak worries
I'm too unsure of myself

Boy, you sure know what to say to me
But tell me, really, what should I believe?
Words don't say so much as what you do
So I'll just settle back, I'm watching you
And if you want me
It's ok to haunt me
Just don't tease me, please don't taunt me.

There I go again with hard feelings
and weak worries
I'm too unsure of myself

Boy, you sure know what to say to me
Yeah, you can play me like a melody
With just one word you clear my doubts away
A little attention goes a long, long way
And that's enough
I guess I kinda like it rough
'Cause on the outside I'm so tough...

Discography

DISCOGRAPHY
Why Go To Work When You Can Play? (solo, 1988)
Come Hell or High Harmonies (the Jazzabels, 1990)
Café All Day (The Jazzabels, 1994)
Skyway (The Jazzabels, 1996)
Super Sexy Girlfriend (solo, 2005)
Unplugged (solo, 2007)
Airport Musical (Script and Music, 2009)
The Lost Tapes (solo, 1998/2011)

Kilissa's song "Oh Life" is featured on Buffalo radio station 107.7 FM The Lake's Fourth Local CD #4 (2008)

AIRPLAY
Pre-Release tracks from Kilissa Cissoko's upcoming independent solo cd have already been featured on 107.7 FM The Lake (Buffalo, NY), and Podcasts: Nette Radio, Feminine Groove, and RubyFruit Radio.

REVIEWS
Kilissa's folk/acoustic duo, the Jazzabels, was reviewed in CMJ, Performing Song Writer, Dirty Linen, Sing Out! and various newspapers and zines in the USA and Canada.

Set List

Sets can be up to 90 minutes. A typical set is all original. Depending on the venue/occasion, may include classic and contemporary covers including Norah Jones, Alicia Keys, Bonnie Rait, Carole King plus Jazz Standards.