The girl who beat the Biebs

By admin
04 March 2011

She’s super-talented, has the voice of an angel and with her haunting natural beauty looks like one too. But until a few weeks ago not many people had heard of Esperanza Spalding.

Find love now! Click here.

All that changed when the jazz musician pulled off one of the biggest upsets in Grammy history, walking off with the best new artist award, which pop sensation Justin Bieber had been widely tipped to win.

Bieber’s fans vented their fury on social networking site Twitter, demanding to know how a complete unknown could beat the teen.

The 26-year-old is the first jazz musician to win a best new artist Grammy. With three albums to her name she has a loyal following and counts Stevie Wonder and American president Barack Obama among her fans.

With her lively and accessible music style she’s the brightest star on the jazz horizon and is being hailed as someone capable of bringing the rather highbrow genre into the iPod age.

Esperanza, which means hope in Spanish, started playing the violin when she was five. Her mom raised her and her brother as a single parent, working various jobs as a carpenter, dishwasher and security guard to put food on the table.

But although they had little, Esperanza says her childhood was happy.

“My upbringing was rich with fun, love and learning. We would sometimes have nothing for dinner but as a child that’s just day-to-day stuff. It didn’t seem tragic because there was love in that home.”

After mastering the violin she started tinkering on her mom’s piano. “I would learn songs from the radio and TV by ear,” she recalls.

She earned a place in the Chamber Music Society of Oregon, a community orchestra for children and adults, playing classical piano, the oboe, clarinet and violin. She was 15 when she started playing the instrument that would make her famous.

“When I touched the bass something miraculous happened,” she says. “I felt like my voice was going to come out through this instrument.”

“She’s the real deal,” drumming legend Tommy Igoe says. “This isn’t candy – she’s a real musician. To see a woman playing an acoustic bass isn’t something we see all the time. To see her sing and play bass – I can’t tell you what a unique and fascinating combination that is.”

With a Grammy to her name she hopes to win new followers. She believes she has something to offer everyone – even hardcore Justin Bieber fanatics.

Read more about the talented artist in YOU, 10 March 2011.

Find Love!

Men
Women