Singer, songwriter, educator
Fans who’ve just discovered Keisha Hutchins’s smooth, heady blend of folk, soul, and alt-country might be forgiven if they are surprised to learn that the Philadelphianative didn’t learn her craft in a smoky barroom. Classically trained at the prestigious Oberlin Conservatory, Keisha has been exploring, blending, and bending genres from Carnegie Hall to the clubs of Philadelphia. In addition to her first group, the trip-hop electronic artists Vanishing Peoples of the Earth, the soprano has performed with the Philadelphia Singers, the former resident choir of the Philadelphia Orchestra, for seven seasons, and has collaborated with artists as diverse as hip-hop producer Justin Gilmore of KRU records, dance music producer and DJ MacGuyver, New York composer Andrew Shapiro, and New Orleans composer and trumpeter Hannibal Lokumbe. Her eclectic talents extend offstage: she is a music educator, serving as the Lower School Music Teacher at Abington Friends School and has received the Leeway Foundation’s Art and Change grant for women who use their art to create social change. Keisha’s debut solo album, Dedicated, moved the Philadelphia City Paper to name her one of its Great Unknown Artists in 2006. Her new album, Press Play, draws on a wide range of influences, creating a mesmerizing work that defies categorization. If you want to know what Keisha Hutchins is about—well, you’ll have to Press Play.