We had the good fortune of connecting with Angelica Burdette and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Angelica, what’s the end goal, career-wise?
Well, I hope my career never ends. Or at least, I hope to be involved in the music industry for the rest of my life. I want to be the greatest songwriter of all time, but that’s subjective so as far as career goals… I want to sustain myself solely from my music and art. To be free to create and be in a position to help others create, is the ultimate goal. I hope by the end of my career my songs will have reached all over the world and I along with them. I used to have these daydreams of being this radical pop star that broke down barriers and smashed the gates and gatekeepers of the industry, thus clearing a golden pathway of representation for girls like me that didn’t fit into what my child mind considered to be the global standard of “barbie” beauty… I guess I still want some of those things. I daydreamed a lot as a kid and I still do as an adult. When I close my eyes these days, I don’t just imagine myself singing to thousands of people at Red Rocks Amphitheater, or on tour opening for Shaky Graves. (Don’t get me wrong I daydream about that a lot) But I also think about some kid alone in their room while their world crashes down listening to me sing about that time my world crashed down and how I lived to tell the tale and them knowing that a) their not alone and b) they have what it takes to get through whatever it is their going through. I know my music could have the power to create positive motion in the world and I just want to get into the ears of as many people that might need it, as possible. Especially if it’s going to change their minds about how they treat themselves, present them with an alternative option for coping, or provide a little hope and perspective in an otherwise dark and seemingly hopeless situation. I don’t know if that qualifies as a professional goal but some other things I hope to accomplish are: – Amass enough clout to use my clout to clear the way for up and coming underrepresented artists especially BIPOC/ LGBTQIA2S+ communities – Graduate from Berklee with a masters in songwriting and production, – Headline Tin Pan South, Bumbershoot, and Pickathon, – Play a NPR tiny desk concert, – Start or invest in a non-profit that provides therapy and other mental health services to creatives, – Write a musical – Write a book – Write a book that gets adapted to a musical

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
The tagline for my music is: songs for sinking souls hope for humankind. I think what makes my music different from others is the autobiographical nature of my songs. I try not to hide the ugly parts or embellish anything. Even if I’m writing about the shittier things that I’ve done, I try to do so from a forgiving standpoint. songwriting has always been a part of me. I write about how it feels to be low and lonely, to be the villain, to have wanderlust and to feel trapped by the expectations of relationships, to experience and heal from trauma, to dwell in sadness, to be human, to be an addict, to be unfaithful… Getting to where I am today wasn’t easy. I was a poet long before I ever picked up a guitar, but never had much confidence doing either. I started doing seasonal work to get out of my hometown and ended up spending a few years in Utah. Utah changed my life. It was my first time living and playing around strangers and it really gave me the confidence I needed to keep going. It was also in Utah that I got into a pretty heinous cliff-jumping accident that nearly took my life. That was a huge wake-up call for me. After that I pretty much knew music is where I wanted to go with my life, so I stopped screwing around and started getting serious and taking myself seriously as an artist. At the end of the day, I play music because somewhere out there is someone facing the same demons, fighting the same battles and reeling from the same mistakes. and somewhere out there is someone who has felt a loneliness so deep it feels like drowning. and to those someone’s out there somewhere… to those feeling like failures and screw ups I want to say: I’m here and I’ve live here too. you’re not alone. and If I’m here and you’re there then surely there must be others. And if we don’t have to be alone then maybe we don’t have to feel so helpless.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
It’s been a long covid era and half the places I used to be in love with unfortunately didn’t make it through the pandemic. (RIP Rocking Frog) but my favorite places are as follows: Cruzroom Annex for live music and tacos, hit up Powells and buy way too many books. Then head to Ringler’s Annex/Al’s Den for cocktails and live music every day. Gravy, Tin Roof or Eastburn Pub for brunch is a must. Hanging out patio-style at the Rose and Thistle and the Sweet Hereafter. favorite parks in town include Powell Butte and Forest Park (only in winter too crowded in the spring and summer) take a quick overnight trip back to the hometown (Seattle) for a Motown Monday at Bar Sue and a night time stroll through an empty pike place market. back to Portland to have whiskey and ciders on Morgain and Lindseys fire escape. If Shady Pines House is having a party you know I’m already there. When it’s time to get out of the city, we’d head to Estacada and do some Kayaking or drive out to the tilamook forest to camp and swim. gotta hit up Short Beach while were out there to play in the waves and sing in the sand. If you happen to be in town during for night market, you can spend the evening drinking margaritas from a light bulbs, petting alpacas and shopping for handmade artisan goods. And if the weathers just right my favorite place to be is riding my bike along the west side of the river. Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There are so many wonderful humans that have entered my life and helped get me to where I’m going I don’t know where to start. Shoutout to Shady Pines Media for absolutely all they’ve done to encourage and support me and my music. Not only did they record mix and master my first album but they always have me on their mind for new projects and I cannot thank Brian and Callie Bauer enough for all the work they do for the Portland music scene. They ran the best open mics in town pre-covid and when the pandemic hit, to fill the void of open mic they built an online radio station to keep us all going. They community that they’ve built around them is so beautiful and I feel so lucky to be a part of it. Also shoutout to all the amazing women in my life. I feel so lucky to have this widespread network of badass ladies that are consistently inspiring and encouraging me to be my best self. I wouldn’t be where I am without them. To the gatekeepers and tastemakers holding it down for underrepresented artists: Eva Walker of The Black Tones and KEXP, Jenna Talbot of Still The Weather and MGME, and Katy McIlvern of Dawn Patrol Media. Shout out to my sisters Ashleigh and Annika and to my best friend of 20 years, Stevie Rae. And of course to the rest of my girl gang: Abby Talon, Hannah Gross, Morgaine Baumann, Lindsey Frost, Holly Mayle, Meg Cody, Sarah Dinnocenzo, Sarah Noll, Kim Bache, Jessica Manalo, Cadi Carlson and so many others. each and every one of these women impacted my life profoundly in one way or another and I don’t know where I’d be without them.

Instagram: @a.strangebird

Facebook: Facebook.com/angelicaacoustic

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHvSgS6kBVdgdtHlHSm-lNg/videos

Image Credits
Dante Nichols, Jake Nunley

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