Singer CT Jazz and Soul brings his artistry to the stage and helps young people
Enfield — When singer/songwriter Sache-Gaye Marshall was younger, she spotted a boy she thought was cute, but it brought out her shy side and she didn’t know what to say to him or how to express her feelings.
Then she heard Grammy-winning artist Brandy’s song “Have You Ever,” and Marshall was thrilled to have her feelings expressed in words, she said.
From that point, Marshall said, she decided that she too wanted to be a musical artist and wanted to make sure people didn’t feel alone in any situation they might be facing at the time.
“I started [song] wrote when I was in third grade. And from there, I was just writing, always writing songs like any melody in my head,” she said. “And from there, I just started to fall in love with it more. By the time I got to high school, I was performing alone in front of people.
Musically known as Ysanne, Marshall has been a performing artist since high school and has the music project called “Emotionally Fixed” to his credit. She has performed at Dewey’s Jazz Lounge in Springfield, Jazzy’s Cabaret in New Haven, and many other venues across the state and beyond. She has also performed with national artists, Donnell Jones, Juelz Santana and The Dream.
Introduced to her music through a DJ friend a few years ago, Bee heard the music, fell in love with it, and felt she had to see Ysanne perform live, Bee said. She had this chance.
“When I tell you I just… fell in love with this girl. There was so much drive and artistry and dedication and hard work in every aspect of her performance,” Bee said. such an inspiration that I literally stopped her after the show to introduce herself. From there, they quickly became friends.
“His music alone is just beyond his years. I grew up listening to many different types of music that weren’t mainstream, including jazz,” Bee said. “So it’s great to have someone my age representing that style of music and not be put off by the fact that there aren’t many listeners, where in turn she inspires makes people want to listen to jazz or be a little more interested in it. She makes it a little more modern to kind of bridge the generation gap.
In addition to performance opportunities, Marshall has received numerous awards, including serving as the Arts Community Impact Coordinator at the Northwest Connecticut Art Council in January 2021, as part of the Bridge Builders Initiative, where she works to build bridges between the community and the arts. . She also received an Emerging Artist Recognition Award in March 2020 from the Connecticut Office of the Arts.
Additionally, in April 2020, she received an Artist Teaching Fellowship, allowing her to co-create an innovative arts empowerment program targeting young women of color, which she called “Black Girl Magic.” The program presents the arts as a tool for empowerment and embodiment that encourages participants to express their feelings.
Inspiration for the program comes from her own experiences as a young black girl, like when songwriting was her outlet where she could express her feelings about the things she was going through and still wish she had more support.
“I’ve had trauma, however minimal, ever since I was a young girl. I grew up in a predominantly white town, I grew up in Enfield. Now it’s more diverse, I would say in terms of the community there. [Yet], in elementary school, there were about five black kids and four of us lived on the same street. You notice… I had experiences and didn’t talk much when I was younger.
She hopes with these workshops to give girls of color a safe place to express themselves and give them the tools of art that have helped her throughout her life.
“When it comes to training the next generation through the arts, I want to give them healthier tools to express themselves, [with] to cope with everyday life. Whether it’s positive or negative, and everything in between, we have to digest our daily lives…” Marshall said.
“So by giving young people different tools, whether it’s through dancing, music, painting, singing, or creating something with their hands, I want them to use it as an outlet, instead of tricks harmful or threatening someone with their words,” she said. “It’s OK to have those feelings, I’m not saying not to have those emotions, because we have to process those emotions, because those are lessons for ourselves. We can do them in a healthier way.
Both of Marshall’s parents are Jamaican, and her home was filled with reggae and old school songs while she was growing up, she said. Her father is also a singer.
Marshall said her parents were supportive and her parents signed her up for piano lessons at a young age.
From there, over the years, she began to fall in love with the idea of a music career.
By the time she was in high school, Marshall began performing alone in front of people, as she previously had her friends play with her for extra support.
When Marshall was in her mid-teens, around 15 or 17, she also developed a love for musical theater. Then, a major opportunity opened up for her, as she was accepted into the Greater Hartford of Performing Arts voice program.
There she was able to learn the tools that helped make her a better musician, she said.
Once she graduated, she attended Dean College in Franklin, Massachusetts, and graduated in 2012 Cum Laude with her Bachelor’s degree in Arts and Entertainment Management: Communications with Performance Studies . While there, she continued to hone her craft, while making connections within the entertainment community around her.
Through networking, she had the opportunity to open up to major artists, such as R&B singer Donnell Jones, hip-hop artist Juelz Santana and singer, songwriter and record producer The Dream.
“It was really awesome to perform in front of their audience and have their audience accept me and my original music from so long ago,” she said.
Marshall, she said, also began applying what she was learning in her classes, coordinating events herself and performing in musicals in the New England area, so that she learned about for-profit and non-profit organizations, as well as audio and visual production classes. .
After graduating in 2012 Cum Laude with her BA in Arts and Entertainment Management: Communications with Performance Studies, she began performing alone or in musicals in the New England area. She also overcame obstacles to keep her artistry alive and not lose sight of her purpose as a living artist, she said.
“Consistency, of course. Sometimes, financially, knowing what gigs I should be doing and what I shouldn’t be doing… understanding as an artist, whatever your discipline, what my goal is – always making sure I haven’t… lost it sight,” she said.
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Her biggest opportunity to date came in the fall of 2021 where she played legendary jazz icon, Billie Holiday, in the solo show “Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grille” in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
“It was a great opportunity to really dive into Billy’s time. We know about Billy, but we don’t really know about Billy. Really getting to know more about his story and then embodying him to share and be his receptacle by as long as the testimony was so beautiful, [along with] the different ages who have seen the show, how far they have come, and them comparing me to other legends who have performed as Billie Holiday. It’s been awesome,” she said.
For more information about Ysanne and her music, visit her website.