She sings the way folks used to -- from the soles of their feet, from the down deep of their souls...
A vocalist, songwriter and producer, Lisala Beatty has a signature Funk/Hip-Hop/Jazz sound she calls “Grit Soul.” Her voice is sanctified by lush motifs that call vocal pioneers Ella Fitzgerald, Sweet Honey in the Rock and the Clark Sisters to mind. She blends vintage heart stirring vocals with inventive production. Her’s is the sound you’ve been listening for.
Lisala emerged as a solo artist in her native New York City with a self produced, independent release entitled “Get It” in 2003 featuring esteemed musicians such as Vijay Iyer, Brian Jackson and Kirk Douglas. Her emotionally raw song “Last Tear” was featured on several soul compilations, and her innovative rendition of “Tell Me Something Good” got the legendary crooner Chaka Kahn to take notice and seek Lisala’s songwriting talents.
For more than a decade, Lisala has also been a featured vocalist in the improvisational band Burnt Sugar under the direction of Greg Tate. The internationally touring Burnt Sugar has eleven recordings and performs “conduction” a system for conducting musical improv originated by the late Butch Morris. Lisala toured France and Canada in 2015 with the The Black Rock Coalition’s all female Orchestra, saluting pioneer Black female songwriters. There, Lisala debuted some of her newest compositions. She has also recorded and/or performed with musicians such as Vernon Reid, DJ Bobby D’Ambrosia, Tamar Kali and Angela Johnson. Her vocals were featured on rapper Jadakiss’ song “I Tried” from his 2009 Island/Def Jam release and she sang and co-wrote a song with producer/artist Angela Johnson entitled “Walkin” which appeared in an episode of A&E’s drama “The Glades” in 2012. Lisala’s soaring vocals are also featured on the 2015 single release “The Way Love Is” produced by DJ Moon Rocket.
Off stage, this Wharton School of Business grad has been the Manager of New York City’s largest music education non-profit program called Music and the Brain (MATB). MATB provides curriculum and piano keyboards to teach young elementary school students to read music and develop piano skills as part of their core academic education. Since it’s inception in 1997, MATB has benefitted more than 400,000 students in more than 250 public schools. Lisala’s voice and arrangements are featured on hundreds of recordings used in classrooms throughout NYC and beyond.
With live performances riveting audiences in France, England, Spain, Russia, Italy, Japan and the US, Lisala delivers bold creativity through her Grit Soul/Funk sound. Lisala is currently working on releasing new music.
"The impassioned crooning...gutbucket singing (of this) soulful soprano pierces through"
- Jazz Times Magazine