Rosa Russ
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Rosa Russ

Band R&B Adult Contemporary

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Music

The best kept secret in music

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Discography

Sincerely Yours,
Sultry Strom Music
2004

Photos

Feeling a bit camera shy

Bio

Herstory. . . Rosa Lynn Russ . . .

Born and raised in Staten Island, NY, Rosa was clear about her destiny from the age of six. Following in the path of her mother, she graced the church with her gift of song and discovered a love for music. At fourteen she was invited to solo with her older brother’s R&B band, after which she received standing ovations. Rosa remembered, “I was excited to see that I could move an adult audience at such a young age.”

. . . Destiny Revisited.

Bustin’ out various high school musical opportunities--Borough wide, All-City and Gospel choirs, “Talent Unlimited” as well as a European tour-- left Rosa ready to hit the NYC Session Circuit and begin singing background for various artists. Keeping it in the family, Rosa later teamed up with her sister and brothers forming a group called “Images.” Together they recorded and shared their familial talents. Rosa’s teenage influences included Stevie Wonder, Natalie Cole and Michael Jackson, just to
name a few, but it really all started with . . .
Mom . . .
Rosa grew up surrounded and soothed by the voices of Ella, Sarah, Nancy… and Mom. Shirley Russ, an extraordinary church soloist for most of Rosa’s childhood, continues to fascinate audiences from church congregants to opera buffs. Rosa recalled her mother singing spirituals and jazz standards. “She was always singing,” said Rosa, “… at church, in concerts, or even at picnics… she would just join the band and break out a ‘My Funny Valentine’ or something…” Rosa insights “… As I got older, I came to appreciate just how talented she really was…and I became her biggest fan!” For Rosa, Shirley Russ was and still is, a primary source of encouragement, optimism, and sense of purpose, serving as the finest model for Rosa as a performer. For Shirley, seeing her daughter accept and embrace her own gifts brings tears to her eyes, “And now,” gleams Rosa, “She’s My biggest fan!”

. . . Destiny Anchored.

Collab’s . . .
One of Rosa’s most prideful collaborations was being part of the vocal quartet “Sepia”. There she worked amongst the ingenuity of talents such as vocalists Lenora Zenzalai Helm, Arif St. Michael, and Marlon Saunders, founder/ brainchild. “Sepia? Oh yeah, Sepia was awesome!” smiles Rosa. “It gave me the chance to really stretch my ear for jazz harmonies and improvisation.” For Rosa, Sepia was a huge growth- producing project, fine-tuning her vocal, written and collaborative skills. “The Absence of Pain” recording was an outstanding blending of vocal harmonies and thought provoking lyrics accented by Rosa’s impassioned and profound leads.

Almost simultaneously Rosa became a featured artist with the Atlantic recording group “The Jazzhole.” On several recordings, she has left her sweet, lyrical mark amidst the band’s penchant for acid jazz. In addition to collaborating, writing and recording for “Sepia” and “Jazzhole” projects, Rosa exercised her vocal prowess by singing background for Angela Bofill, Me’Shell Ndegeocello and others, touring major cities all over the United States, Canada, Europe and Asia.

. . . Destiny Refined.

Her Music . . .
Known for her alluring vocals, Rosa often brings to mind renowned balladeers such as Phyllis Hyman or Patti Austin. Similar to these extraordinary women, Rosa has a way with music. It is clearly her first language and first love. Her approach is sincere, passionate, obscure and seductive… “Sultry”, she’s often tagged. What she says about her music is much more humble. “It’s the most precious gift I can imagine having… a high that’s inexplicable! I’m just thankful for my ability to, not only create music, but to be able to deliver it to live audiences where I actually get to witness the effect it has on others.”

"No more standing on the sidelines…"
Fed by the expertise and finesse of producer Shawn V. Lucas, Rosa Russ completes her first solo CD called “Sincerely yours,” Here Rosa shows her dexterity, managing all aspects of the project from writing to production and marketing. At the same time she delivers a completely moving and warm package of life set to music. “This project is especially dear to me because it represents so much of who I am,” Rosa intimated. “I learned many lessons, one being to trust and believe in myself…I mean …it’s not about being perfect, but using the resources that we have to make things happen…yeah, I’m learning to respect my talents, and to give myself the credit I so often give to others.”

On this project, that sultry style is sealed with a genial and heartfelt intro/outro. Her vocals, so skillfully arranged and layered, tell stories once remembered, almost forgotten (like ole’ school R&B and jazz). Musically and lyrically, “Sincerely yours,” invites, emotes, celebrates and intrigues. It also funks and kicks… just in the right places. Ms. Russ pulls you in with her range and clever musicality and then holds you dear with heartening and magical themes.

. . . Destiny Realized.