The Portland Playlist welcomed Amber Sweeney to the studio for a Drop-In Session that was perfectly timed for this moment in history because conversation covered music as healer and feminine empowerment. Amber is very much a woman’s artist for she is forging her path in a male dominated industry, backed by manager, Jessicca Garcia. She has a new EP, “Believing in Love,” which will be celebrated January 26 at Moulton Falls Winery followed by its official release the following day. This is an album, a year and a half in the making – she took great care in crafting from the songs she wrote, to the NW talents who perform on the album, to recording it at the famed London Bridge Studio in Seattle. It is filled with music from the heart set to r&b, pop, and soul beats. She made her first music video to the title track which you can watch here. She thoughtfully paid tribute to each artist represented on the album which you can read on her website Blog or Facebook page.
Amber’s love of music began before she could walk and talk. Her dad played in a high school band and taught Amber to play the guitar at the age of six, with assistance from her mom. Her music influences include heavyweights Michael Jackson, Sheryl Crow, Mary J. Blige, and Alicia Keys. Jackson was the first artist she remembers hearing that grabbed her for his brilliant artistry. She admired Crow for her talents as a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and all around role model for girls and women. Blige is one Amber dreams of writing with, and her song, “Therapy,” shows how music is an outlet that can serve as healer. Alicia Keys’, “Girl Can’t be Herself No More,” is a powerful one off an album that has profoundly touched Amber.
Moving on to the second half of the show, we listened to a couple of the recorded tracks off the new EP: Believing in Love, The Great Northwest features the musicianship of Seattle and Portland’s finest and is a song meant to bridge the gap between the two cities, and Restless, a sultry little gem. During the live performance portion of the show, Amber performed two tracks off the album: River’s Edge and Your Will Be Done, which features the Battle Ground H.S. Vocal Jazz Choir on the album. You can watch the Facebook Livestream video here.
Amber believes in supporting programs that benefit our youth so $1 from every sale of the new EP will go directly to ROCKSOLID Teen Center, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing safe, fun, and engaging after school activities for 5th through 12th grade students in the Battle Ground/Hockinson school districts.
We loved seeing Amber back in the PRP studio. You might recall, she hosted a weekly show here until she started working on the new album. Speaking of this album, you can enter to win a copy by texting, “Believe,” to 27299. It will make a great addition to your local music collection. Be sure and go to her release party on 1/26 because she leaves to go on tour shortly thereafter and will not play a NW show until late April.
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