Elise Besler ~ Singer. Songwriter. Soul.
Soul music is more than a genre. It’s a human connection. It’s gutsy, resilient and timeless. It’s an invitation, to feel deeply ~ and for some, to sing their face off! A soul singer is willing to dig deep, and bare all.
Halifax NS soul singer and songwriter Elise Besler’s new EP “Lean In” is a dynamic collection of her favorite styles of soul music, from the gospel inspired full band arrangements of ‘Good For The Soul’ and ‘Heavy’ to the swampy acoustic southern blues inspired title track. The 6 songs on this EP are original material written by Elise and her husband (Producer) Scott Harnish. “These songs come directly from my heart and have been inspired by life and the desire for growth and change” The EP features some of Elise’s favorite local Halifax musicians including additional vocals by Jessie Brown, guitars by Harnish and lap steel by Nick MacLean.
Growing up in an Alberta household full of music, Elise drew early inspiration from classic soul singers like Aretha Franklin and more modern singers like Whitney Houston. “I would make mix tapes of my favorite songs and sing full sets with costumes and choreography for anyone who would listen, sometimes it was my stuffed animals!”
Elise’s love of music and singing pulled her to Grant MacEwan University in her hometown of Edmonton Alberta, where she studied voice, performance and composition. The famed music program connected Elise with some fabulous musicians including Edmonton (now Toronto) Producer Greg Johnston, who produced her first album, “Done up Right” in 2002. Many songs from the album were licensed for TV spots with DECODE Nickelodeon, The Family Channel and The Food Network, the shows were aired in North and South America, as well as internationally in countries as far away as China. Notable touring of this album included a sold out house for the release at “The Backroom Vodka Bar” in Edmonton, mainstage at The Edmonton Jazz Festival and clubs across Western Canada and in Toronto.
Elise is a passionate music educator and as the owner and instructor of Nusong Studio, her voice and performance studio in Halifax, she guides her students to reach their own musical goals. “I take my role as a music mentor very seriously, and I believe music is better when we come together as a community”.
Elise Besler returned to the stage September 10, 2016 to a sold out house at Halifax’s The Carleton, with the release of “Lean In”.