Nijole Sparkis
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Nijole Sparkis

Band World Singer/Songwriter


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"Parallel Universe"


Parallel Universe is 11 mystical songs all sung in English [and Lithuanian - ed.] from the heart of Los Angeles local, singer / songwriter Nijole (pronounced Neola) Sparkis. Dare I say that Sparkis actually reminds me a little of Madonna when the superstar's ego is lassoed to a yoga mat? Maybe even a little Bjork filters in at times and Sarah Brightman, but certainly Sparkis has her own style.

Born in Chicago and raised in a Lithuanian community, her song-driven compositions encompass Middle Eastern influences as well as 70's rock. This album was produced by Fritz Heede, who is known as a multi-instrumentalist and world music composer. On this CD Fritz plays sitar, Turkish saz, octave mandolin, flamenco guitar, electric guitar and keyboards.

I like the way this record was produced and Sparkis' voice has a very interesting fragile quality. I can't recommend this album for Yoga usage, but it might appeal to fans of spiritually tainted rock music that weaves a dramatic spell on its listeners.

-- Michael R. Mollura - LA Yoga Magazine

"Fabulously Woven Styles"

What a beautiful, dreamy, exotic, album!
I think I've been waiting a long time to hear this music!
I knew I was going to like it from the first amazing guitar riff
- a cross between Chris Isaac and something Middle Eastern like what Jimmy Page would come up with, set against a backdrop of poignant silence. And then you hear Nijole's voice almost whispering -- You rarely hear a voice so soothing and sensuous, but so expressive - her voice is audibly painting a picture with its subtle shades of emotional expression -- and then the music suddenly sweeps up and out into a lavish chorus of siren
song! And then she transports you to some ancient ancestral place when she suddenly goes Lithuanian on ya...! Good stuff... sent shivers down my back. And the girl's got a range, too - check out the unbelievably high notes in "Rise" - I couldn't tell if it was the flute until I heard it playing alongside her vocal,
except much LOWER!

So I thought, of course the first song is good, the second song is good... but I'm sure all the weak songs are going to be towards the end. Not so!! Every song is wonderful.
Each song is different from each the other - one more pop, one more ethnic, one almost jazzy and the last one is almost classical, though this one is the most unique to me - truly Nijole found a completely unique voice in "Evening Prayer".
But somehow no matter how different each song is from the other, the whole album is held together with Nijole's own unique style. She is continuing the Peter Gabriel tradition -- writing pop songs with a different vocabulary, borrowing from exotic influences but still unmistakably pop (or "art pop", as some like to call it). Great melodies that stick with you -- I'm constantly singing a different song in my head. And the words are speaking to our emotional experiences, as well as offering a positive philosophy. She has a unique insight into our psychology...perhaps into her own soul?

And certainly Nijole has found an equally worthy partner in Fritz Heede who did the production -- very lush, very exotic, walking the fine line between ethereal, airy and otherworldly on the one hand, until he brings you crashing down to earth with some wild guitar riff or pulsing ethnic percussion, carving out a style all his own. Each song is like a dramatic piece with a perfectly meshed musical score underlying the meaning - each like a little movie... The musicians on the album are all
very top-notch - always fresh, always creative, nothing clichéd in any of the musical prases or arrangements, which is certainly welcome in today's musical
environment! All in all, I can't help loving this album,
I really look forward to my drive now, knowing that it's going to be really special


CD "Parallel Universe"
Los Angeles's #1 Classic Rock Station KLOS 95.5 is playing several of my tracks on legendary DJ Jim Ladd's show "Headsets".
Many Internet radio stations are streaming my tracks, including the Blue Whale at


Feeling a bit camera shy


“When I was a kid growing up on the South Side of Chicago, my folks had me go to Lithuanian school and participate in all these Lithuanian activities. There was a lot of singing going on always -- Lithuanian is one of the oldest cultures on earth and wisdom got handed down from one generation to the next thru song. So singing was very important, people would spontaneously burst out into 5-part harmony. Eventually I rebelled and wanted to just get into the cool pop music I heard on the radio, but those choral harmonies got ingrained in me and that's what I try to capture in my work.”

Nijole (pronounced Neola) Sparkis has a 4-octave singing range but she thinks she's a better writer than singer. “In the Lithuanian community, I was a star child actress and poetry declaimer. I was on stage a lot and wrote a lot, too. Then in high school I met a group of guys who had a band and I started singing harmonies with them. I blew my voice out singing in bars the wrong way. By the time I got to De Paul University I had a one-octave range. Then I studied with the best voice teacher in Chicago -- Doug Susu-Mago, who eventually opened my voice up to a full 4 octaves. I learned so much about the singing voice in that process that I was able to teach others all that I had learned."

“Once you grow up multi-culturally, you're never satisfied sticking with a single culture again. When I was listening to pop music , the music I found most satisfying were the songs that had exotic Eastern influences like Jefferson Airplane's “White Rabbit “, Led Zeppelin's “Kashmir”, George Harrison's “Within You/Without You”, or the David Bowie “Lodger” album. Not to mention the unique combinations of ethnic and pop music that artists like Peter Gabriel, Kate Bush, and Paul Simon were pioneering”.

“Lithuania was the last country in Europe to be Christianized so the traditions I was raised with were a healthy combination of earth-based ritual and the mystical side of Catholicism. This gave me a colorful pallette of religious symbolism to draw from. Because De Paul was a Catholic University, I was required to take theology to graduate, so I studied Comparative Eastern Religions and Creation Mythologies. It just went on from there -- I delved deeply into every avenue of spiritual study I could get my hands on. I much prefer the empowering belief systems, like the New Thought movement, rather than the old school religions that rule by claiming they have all the answers for the individual”.

Nijole graduated from De Paul University's music school magna cum laude, toured the Midwest and played clubs and festivals in Los Angeles with all-originals bands. She also continued acting in performance art and avant-theatrical shows and college films. She opened her own voice teaching studio, The Vocal Point, taught singing at the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute, and briefly taught singing for the Disney Channel, where she witnessed the start of the careers of Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Justin Timberlake, Jessica Simpson, Keri Russell, JC Chasez and others. She sang the Theme Song for the DVD release of Paul David's controversial film "Timothy Leary's Dead". Nijole's life experiences and spiritual study helped her to coach artists on their singing careers using the principles she learned.

Currently, Nijole's music is being played on legendary DJ Jim Ladd's Theatre of the Mind radio show "Headsets" on Los Angeles's #1 Classic Rock station KLOS-FM 95.5. She has just completed writing and recording vocals for 2 songs on Fritz Heede's upcoming album which features Jon Anderson (lead singer of 70's super-group "Yes") on one of the cuts. She has a video coming out on Harmony Channel (Comcast Cable) in fall of 2006. Her favorite female vocalists are Norway's Anneli Drecker (Bel Canto), Russia's Milla Jovovich, England's Kate Bush, Ireland's Enya, Scotland's Eddi Reader, Canada's Loreena McKennitt, India's Najma, Morocco's Amina, and Egypt's Natacha Atlas.