Have you ever heard the name Ch’an?
If you haven’t, please note the name down as it is one you are going to be hearing about for a long time to come.
It would appear that this rising powerhouse of an artiste just burst on to the scene out of nowhere and her angelic voice has just bowled people over.
However, the performance that introduced her to many more Barbadians was her rendition of Chandelier by Sia at the recent staging of Mahalia’s Corner.
Ch’an’s performance was talked about for weeks. It was just so brilliant. In fact, the public response shocked the artiste herself.
“I was super surprised! It felt very much like a tidal wave of niceness – I wasn’t ready, and I felt a little guilty saying “thank you” when that was all God. I said a prayer, and waltzed on to the stage and let the big Him do His work,” she said of the performance that left many in tears.
Ch’an said the performance was not planned and went on a path of its own. “I don’t think you can plan something like that. We rehearsed, of course, but the night still went its own way. You make plans like breaks and builds but essentially the feeling of things takes you wherever you need to go and should be allowed to do so.
“That’s the beauty of a live band versus a track. And to all the people who cried, I feel you – I cried too,” Ch’an said.
The down to earth artiste said she admires the artiste Sia, and that explains why she felt so comfortable singing her song.
“I think Sia is a both a brilliant artiste and songwriter. That’s the package deal right there. I admire her skills and the way she continues to work and play with things musically,” Ch’an said.
“My musical influences are old school jazz ladies, though, like Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan, Billie Holiday and, of course, Miss Nina Simone. Sia may be too recent a discovery to be considered an influence though she certainly is a favourite of mine.”
Another stand out performance from Ch’an came just days ago at the 50th anniversary of Independence mega-concert at Kensington Oval. She was one of the singers who did a tribute to Rihanna during the show.
For her, this has now become one of her most memorable performances. “It’s a toss-up between Mahalia’s Corner and the Mega Concert held on Independence Day. Both nights I got to work with some of Barbados’ best and both were a coming home of sorts,” she said.
Admittedly a different artiste, Ch’an said she has always marched to the beat of her own drum, and this helps with her strong persona on stage.
“I’ve always been dancing to my own drum so to speak, the weird kid, the oddball. I decided to own it after secondary school. Am I super confident offstage? Maybe not but it doesn’t generally get in the way of me being me. Bravados for the win!
“Under the make-up and showmanship is a perfectly normal young woman, trying to figure out how best to go about “adult-ing” most days,” she said with a hearty chuckle.
It seems music is in Ch’an’s genes. “My family on either side has plenty of musical people in it. Both my parents sing, I’ve got uncles and aunts, cousins too who all sing well. I’m perhaps just the only one you’re aware of,” she said.