Trained at a young age and writing since she was 10, Chicago singer-songwriter Andrea Dawn has methodically honed her craft into a unique style that exists somewhere between 1930s jazz singers, 90s singer-songwriters, and the film scores of Danny Elfman and Jon Brion. All of this is propelled by her strong piano playing and even stronger vocals, creating a truly epic strain of Baroque Pop. She has recorded and played across the Chicago area and beyond, sharing the stage with such artists as Jill Barber, Joe Firstman, and Justin McRoberts. In 2008 she was voted one of Illinois Entertainer’s “Best of Around Hear,” and in 2009 she won the grand prize for Backthird Audio’s Songwriter Showcase.
Andrea became obsessed with music early in life. Spending hours diving into artists like Fiona Apple, Led Zeppelin, Alanis Morissette, oldies, grunge… anything she could get her hands on. By 12 she was holed up in her parents basement with a 4-track recorder running out to a tape deck. Later in life she fell in love with musicians like Nina Simone, Ella Fitzgerald, and Harry Nilsson.
Andrea released her debut album, Theories of How We Can Be Friends, on Waterloo Sunset Records in 2012. Dawn recorded Theories over the course of a year, mostly on her own in her loft and at various locations around Chicago. The record was then mixed and mastered by Brian Zieske (The Academy Is, The Hush Sound). “The idea was to make a million dollar record on a thousand dollar budget,” says Dawn. The record has been featured on many college radio stations across the country including KPSU Portland, KVRX Austin, KAMP Tucson, WLUW Chicago, and CJLO Montreal, and it was ranked in the Top 100 Albums for KALX Berkeley, CA
Andrea began writing her new album, Doll, while touring for Theories. Moodier, darker, more ambitious and lyrical than Theories, Doll takes the listener on a journey of the nature of love, exploring its contradictions and complexity. The album was recorded in November 2013 at Soma Electronic Music Studios in Chicago, IL with engineering, mixing, and mastering by Brian Zieske and will be released on Record Store Day, April 19, 2014.
Acclaim for Theories of How We Can Be Friends
“Andrea seems less concerned with anyone’s preconceived notions and more concerned with singing until her voice cracks and the darkness seeps away into the dawn…this is anthemic stuff—the sound of an orchestral catharsis.” – Beats Per Minute
“Powerful, passionate, and poetic…this is the beautiful work of a profoundly mature young artist…” – The Noise Beneath The Apple
“Her cultured and often emotive songwriting slant is nothing short of enchanting.” – Andy Argyrakis