Leah McKendrick
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Leah McKendrick

San Jose, California, United States

San Jose, California, United States
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Artists on the Rise: Leah McKendrick and Julia Price

It’s a long way to the top if you want to rock and roll, so it’s nice when musicians on the rise band together in the middle of their journey. That’s exactly what LA-based pop upstarts Leah McKendrick and Julia Price have done in their individual pursuits of greatness.

McKendrick, a pop-R&B singer who can be compared to Mariah Carey, and Price, a folk-pop singer who can be compared to Sara Bareilles, aren’t all that similar in terms of style, but the two have become friends as they tear up the LA scene.

Here’s a video to give you a taste of McKendrick’s powerful vocals:

Check out more of Leah’s music at – http://www.facebook.com/leahmckendrick - TheAwesomeCave.com


Artists on the Rise: Leah McKendrick and Julia Price

It’s a long way to the top if you want to rock and roll, so it’s nice when musicians on the rise band together in the middle of their journey. That’s exactly what LA-based pop upstarts Leah McKendrick and Julia Price have done in their individual pursuits of greatness.

McKendrick, a pop-R&B singer who can be compared to Mariah Carey, and Price, a folk-pop singer who can be compared to Sara Bareilles, aren’t all that similar in terms of style, but the two have become friends as they tear up the LA scene.

Here’s a video to give you a taste of McKendrick’s powerful vocals:

Check out more of Leah’s music at – http://www.facebook.com/leahmckendrick - TheAwesomeCave.com


Junior's Cave
Music Interview
with Indie Pop Singer, Leah McKendrick
Late Winter (January/February 2013) Edition
Music Now Spotlight

We are thrilled to bring back our weekly music spotlights with new exciting amazing talents. This week’s spotlight officially kicks off our music spotlights with featuring the sensational talent of Indie Pop Singer Leah McKendrick. This Pop Diva has one of the best female Pop Vocals currently out in the music industry. She is bringing something refreshing, new, and fun back to the Pop Music Industry with her style of music. Check out her spotlight with our publication to learn more about this pop princess. Enjoy!

Isaac: Thank you for being a part of our weekly music interview spotlights.

Leah: Thanks for having me, Isaac!

Isaac: Let’s get started. The Indie Music Industry is an amazing beast. Many music critics have stated that Indie Music is on the rise with many new performers being discovered each day. Do you believe that indie music artists can rise to the level of stardom that their major music studio counterparts are able to now?

Leah: I think Arcade fire is proof of that possibility, for sure. Selling out Madison Square Garden and an Album of the Year Grammy ain’t bad! Still, as an indie pop solo artist I’m constantly trying to figure out how to navigate the business while it’s in this kind of transitional phase.

Isaac: What do you feel has been your biggest contribution you have made to Indie Music Industry thus far in your career?

Leah: I think, if anything, I’m proof that you don’t need a label or a huge amount of money to get music videos made.

Isaac: I am interested to know if you could go back and change anything about your own musical career, what would it be and why?

Leah: I think all the stumbles have been necessary in some way, but I think protecting myself and the ownership of my music is something I’m JUST starting to be mindful of. I have been burned in the past because I didn’t feel a need to discuss that stuff and it’s come back to haunt me! Gotta protect your work.

Isaac: I am curious to know: Do you feel that the music industry as a whole is surrounded by an endless pool of undiscovered talents or overcrowded with mediocre performers.

Leah: That’s a great question. I meet both all the time. Still, I don’t care what anyone says, tenacity and determination gets you there before talent much of the time. I know some insanely talented performers that aren’t doing much and it makes me realize that just because you’ve got the skill doesn’t mean you really WANT it, you know? My drive has done more for me than my talent, for sure.

Isaac: Are you currently signed with any of the Indie Music Labels? If not, what are you looking for in any music label that you hope will complement your music?

Leah: I’m only looking to sign with a label that knows about the pop realm and how to market a pop artist. It’s a very different beast. I’ve had doors slammed in my face for not being a rock band, and I’ve had them open for not being a rock band. I never know who is going to love me or hate me.
Isaac: What do you feel has been one of the biggest challenges for you to bring your music to the masses?

Leah: With YouTube and whatnot, anyone can upload so EVERYONE is suddenly a musician. It can be tough to break through with the over-saturation.

Isaac: One of the best attributes for any performer to possess is tenacity. What is your professional and/or personal drive that has made you continue to make great music over the years?

Leah: My strength lies simply in the fact that I don’t see myself doing anything else! It’s all I’ve ever wanted. I love show business. There’s nothing else for me. A music producer once told me, “If you’ve got a plan B, you’re planning to fail.” That might be terrible advice, but I think it’s brilliant!

Isaac: How has living in your current city affected the way you look at the music industry?
Leah: LA can be fun because I have a lot of friends that are also musicians and we all support each other. This town is full of artists: both successful and starving! But yeah, it definitely has a dark side. All the clichés, the sleazy producers and all that, I’ve experienced it. It used to really hurt me because I wanted so badly to be taken seriously, but for some people, it’s really just NOT about the music. That’s fine. There are good people in Hollywood, I know a bunch!

Isaac: We would love to see a music video from you! Do you currently have one that you can let our readers know about?

Leah: My newest video, “SICK” is currently on Vevo and all over, check it out!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TMM5-ya8Qdg

Isaac: At the end of the day, if you never reached musically to a certain level of fame and fortune, would you be happy that you made music on your own terms?

Leah: I’ve spent most of my life doing what I love and pursuing my dreams. I’m greedy and want it all, bu - JuniorsCave.com


Junior's Cave
Music Interview
with Indie Pop Singer, Leah McKendrick
Late Winter (January/February 2013) Edition
Music Now Spotlight

We are thrilled to bring back our weekly music spotlights with new exciting amazing talents. This week’s spotlight officially kicks off our music spotlights with featuring the sensational talent of Indie Pop Singer Leah McKendrick. This Pop Diva has one of the best female Pop Vocals currently out in the music industry. She is bringing something refreshing, new, and fun back to the Pop Music Industry with her style of music. Check out her spotlight with our publication to learn more about this pop princess. Enjoy!

Isaac: Thank you for being a part of our weekly music interview spotlights.

Leah: Thanks for having me, Isaac!

Isaac: Let’s get started. The Indie Music Industry is an amazing beast. Many music critics have stated that Indie Music is on the rise with many new performers being discovered each day. Do you believe that indie music artists can rise to the level of stardom that their major music studio counterparts are able to now?

Leah: I think Arcade fire is proof of that possibility, for sure. Selling out Madison Square Garden and an Album of the Year Grammy ain’t bad! Still, as an indie pop solo artist I’m constantly trying to figure out how to navigate the business while it’s in this kind of transitional phase.

Isaac: What do you feel has been your biggest contribution you have made to Indie Music Industry thus far in your career?

Leah: I think, if anything, I’m proof that you don’t need a label or a huge amount of money to get music videos made.

Isaac: I am interested to know if you could go back and change anything about your own musical career, what would it be and why?

Leah: I think all the stumbles have been necessary in some way, but I think protecting myself and the ownership of my music is something I’m JUST starting to be mindful of. I have been burned in the past because I didn’t feel a need to discuss that stuff and it’s come back to haunt me! Gotta protect your work.

Isaac: I am curious to know: Do you feel that the music industry as a whole is surrounded by an endless pool of undiscovered talents or overcrowded with mediocre performers.

Leah: That’s a great question. I meet both all the time. Still, I don’t care what anyone says, tenacity and determination gets you there before talent much of the time. I know some insanely talented performers that aren’t doing much and it makes me realize that just because you’ve got the skill doesn’t mean you really WANT it, you know? My drive has done more for me than my talent, for sure.

Isaac: Are you currently signed with any of the Indie Music Labels? If not, what are you looking for in any music label that you hope will complement your music?

Leah: I’m only looking to sign with a label that knows about the pop realm and how to market a pop artist. It’s a very different beast. I’ve had doors slammed in my face for not being a rock band, and I’ve had them open for not being a rock band. I never know who is going to love me or hate me.
Isaac: What do you feel has been one of the biggest challenges for you to bring your music to the masses?

Leah: With YouTube and whatnot, anyone can upload so EVERYONE is suddenly a musician. It can be tough to break through with the over-saturation.

Isaac: One of the best attributes for any performer to possess is tenacity. What is your professional and/or personal drive that has made you continue to make great music over the years?

Leah: My strength lies simply in the fact that I don’t see myself doing anything else! It’s all I’ve ever wanted. I love show business. There’s nothing else for me. A music producer once told me, “If you’ve got a plan B, you’re planning to fail.” That might be terrible advice, but I think it’s brilliant!

Isaac: How has living in your current city affected the way you look at the music industry?
Leah: LA can be fun because I have a lot of friends that are also musicians and we all support each other. This town is full of artists: both successful and starving! But yeah, it definitely has a dark side. All the clichés, the sleazy producers and all that, I’ve experienced it. It used to really hurt me because I wanted so badly to be taken seriously, but for some people, it’s really just NOT about the music. That’s fine. There are good people in Hollywood, I know a bunch!

Isaac: We would love to see a music video from you! Do you currently have one that you can let our readers know about?

Leah: My newest video, “SICK” is currently on Vevo and all over, check it out!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TMM5-ya8Qdg

Isaac: At the end of the day, if you never reached musically to a certain level of fame and fortune, would you be happy that you made music on your own terms?

Leah: I’ve spent most of my life doing what I love and pursuing my dreams. I’m greedy and want it all, bu - JuniorsCave.com


Leah McKendrick is an upcoming solo-performing artist who is currently living and working in LA and is our latest Sonicbids competition winner. After checking out some of Leah’s work we were really impressed at Essential Pop and were delighted, despite her hectic schedule that she agreed to complete an interview. Read on to find out about what Leah McKendrick has recently been working on, what music she enjoys listening to and what she does to relax when not working. - Essential Pop Online Magazine


"SICK" the music video feature - Allbiz Entertainment Virtual Showcase (Jul-Oct '12)


"SICK" the music video feature - Allbiz Entertainment Virtual Showcase (Jul-Oct '12)


Coming Soon - Sonic Eclectic Magazine - Music Videos (Aug-Nov '12


Coming Soon - iMoveiLive


Coming Soon - iMoveiLive


Featuring Leah's song, "SICK" - Indie Outbreak Radio Show


Exclusive Interview

Leah, tell us about where you are from.
I’m originally from San Francisco. Love my city. I was lucky to have been raised there.

How has being raised in San Francisco affected your music and style?
I wonder! I think I’ve definitely got a lot of colors to work with because of it. I was exposed to everything growing up. My friends were from all different religions, cultures, sexual orientations. It was normal to me. My best friend as a girl, Aerie, is half filipino, half black, I’m half Nicaraguan, half white. It wasn’t until I moved to So-Cal that I realized that was a pretty unique experience. I’ve had every kind of food, seen every kind of dance, heard every kind of music. My Mom really encouraged that. She believes we are children of the world…

Tell us About the “Dance for Me” Music Video.
I’d describe it as a sexy big girl’s sleepover, with a twist! It was a lot of fun to shoot because it’s all my friends. They all just happen to be gorgeous. I’m excited for it to come out because the music producer of the song, Minde, was not super enthused about the idea of a video. He has had bad experiences with music videos kind of tainting his songs. I think he will love it. He better!

What are you currently working on?
I just finished a song called “Fallen from Grace” and there is some talk about making a video for it. It’s one of my favorite songs I’ve ever done. There were some problems getting it recorded because the producers did not particularly agree with the message, which kind of took me by surprise. When I wrote it, I had this image in my head of an angel turning in his wings…Then it sort of became about being raised very Catholic, and all those expectations as far as being a female and my sexuality…Then I started to think about what it would be like to be raised in the Catholic church and to be gay. What would that feel like? Confusing; stifling, I’m sure. It was never meant to be a song about turning my back on God. it was much more about, “This is who I am, I’m not an angel, and I’m not sorry.”

Tell us about one of the hardest challenges you had to face in the industry?
I’d say a big one has always been being taken seriously. Whether it be because of my age, the fact that I do and have always done pop music, the fact that I’m a solo artist, that I have breasts… It’s a different ball game than it would be if I were the lead singer in a band. Sometimes, there is even a snobbery towards the fact that I do live performances to a track, not with live instruments. Some venues don’t like that. But then they see my show and they are much nicer afterwards.

What was one of the biggest set backs in your career and how did you bounce back?
Having my record deal not work out. It was the hugest heartbreak, but I didn’t give myself much time to think about it. I started performing live, working with new producers, writing a ton. If I stayed home and felt sorry for myself I’d never stop. You think, as a girl, I’m gonna get signed and I’m going to be this huge star. Then you realize as an adult it’s not quite that simple. It’s political; it’s complex. My Dad always says, “You know how to make God laugh? Tell him your plans.”

What are some things artists need to be careful of?
Oh God, I don’t know if I’m an authority on that subject in any way. I’d say listening too much to the naysayers. Everyone has an opinion, you know? In college my acting professor talked about having a “committee”: the group of people closest to you who want the best for you, whose opinions you value… He said to listen to them and only to them. That’s what I try to do. Listen only to my committee. There are too many people dealing with their own stuff and wanting to spread their negativity and you’ve gotta protect your dream, man.

Who is in your committee?
My little sister, Olivia, is a big one. She is probably the head of my committee! She loves me in the most selfless way and I know that she always wants to see me succeed. And she’s got a great ear. She listens to all kinds of music. She’ll either be like, yeah that’s a good one, or please turn that off.

What suggestions do you have for other artists like yourself? Other female pop artists?
If you don’t write music, start. I started writing music out of necessity because I needed songs to sing. Now It’s the most important part of my process. It opens up a whole new world. And I would definitely say that a large part of any success I’ve had has been because I write all my own stuff.

What are your writing inspirations?
Everything from my dreams to my friends’ experiences with lame guys. A big one is heartbreak. I am my most creative when my heart is broken. I’ll churn ‘em out. When I’m in pain I need an outlet, so I’m very focused. When I’m in love I don’t want to write songs, I wanna be in bed.

Where can people visit you?
News, music, tickets, all that junk on my site: leahmckendr - WWS Magazine


Discography

Dance for Me SIngle-Music Video on youtube.com; song available on iTunes

Fallen from Grace-Music Video available on youtube.com

SICK -Video launching on MTV.com and Vevo

Photos

Bio

At a glance, Leah McKendrick appears to be your run of the mill pop tartlet fresh out of the Britney factory. She’s got a team of genetically blessed backup dancers, an affinity for catchy hooks, an array of belly-bearing videos on Youtube and yes, she loves Britney Spears. However, take a closer look and you’ll see: she’s anything but. For starters, Leah’s got one title on her resume unheard of in the pop realm: College graduate.

“I never wanted to go to college. I just wanted to go to LA.” Well, she killed two birds. While earning her degree in Theatre Performance from SoCal liberal arts school, Chapman University, she spent weekends traveling for gigs and recording with some of the industry’s best, including multi-platinum music heavyweight, Roy Hamilton 3, who asserts: “Leah McKendrick is a born star.”

Within a year of graduating, she was on a plane to New York with her first recording contract underway. Also of note: she was signed not only as a recording artist, but as a songwriter. Another rarity in the top 40 game: a pop artist that writes her own material. Grammy Academy member and renowned songwriter Lisa Huang, a mentor to Leah, is convinced. “She is the next Christina Aguilera and Adele! She is talented, passionate, versatile, sincere, prolific.”

Sadly, the uncertain climate of today’s music industry resulted in the dissolution of her record label, and Leah was back to LA with nothing but a few unfinished demo songs. “I was in shock. All I knew was that I needed to get back to work before I could slip into depression or something.” She began crafting what would become her daring live spectacle, “The Horror Picture Show,” inspired by her late idols' masterpiece: “Thriller” by Michael Jackson. After numerous rejections from LA’s top (admittedly rock skewing) venues, she began shooting her own videos, with the help of friends in the industry while taking any gigs she could get. Within a year she had professional grade music videos under her belt and a list of bookings including packed shows at the legendary Troubadour, Key Club, and eventually, a headlining spot at The Viper Room (despite their initial refusal to book a pop artist).

By her third music video, she had teamed with Hollywood director Janice Cooke-Leonard (90210, Gossip Girl), despite being an independent artist-an independent POP artist. The concept, practically an oxymoron.

Probably most unique, is Leah’s dichotomous nature: part visionary performer, part decisive businesswoman. She produces all of her videos and shows, handling everything from what her dancers wear, to hiring editors and makeup artists to designing flyers.

Fall 2013 saw the launch of one of her largest endeavors, the musical web series she created/wrote and stars in: Destroy the Alpha Gammas which the Examiner says is "Taking the internet by storm." With a POWERHOUSE supporting cast including Glee's Jon Robert Hall and Emmy nominee, Lindsey Morgan, Leah McKendrick is steadily rising to the top.

Band Members