BY: ALYSSA MAHADEO
Toronto born and Caribbean bred young upcoming female independent artist Chelsea Stewart is on her way to becoming one of the most talented voices of this generation. Born in Toronto, but raised in Montreal, Chelsea also grew up speaking French from the age of two. Music was a huge part of her childhood growing up. Her passion for singing was encouraged by her Jamaican mother and manager Karen Stewart who shared that, “She practically came out of the womb singing.”
Heading into high school Chelsea came back to Toronto and enrolled into the Regional Arts Program at Mayfield Secondary School. During that time, she did a lot of singing in the Church choir as well as multiple performances in school talent shows. She learned a lot about how to train her voice in multiple genres and spent time training in classical and jazz. After high school, she attended Humber College where she studied and specialized in Jazz Performance before deciding to pursue it as a career. “Why not do what brings people joy?” she thought.
Over the years, growing up in a Caribbean household, Chelsea was exposed to many different genres of music that included Cuban, Jazz, Gospel and African music. She recalls how all the different elements of all of those genres has played a big part in her own music, blending the sounds of old and new together to create some timeless melodies.
Tackling the world of music takes lots of hard work and dedication and Chelsea is no stranger to doing whatever it takes to have her voice heard. When she’s not on stage, you can find her on the streets of Toronto selling her CD’s. As a young independent artist looking to break into the mainstream music scene, Chelsea has performed at many local shows and cultural events, even gracing the stage down in Jamaica. Chelsea is very passionate about her music; she loves to write her own music and uses her natural god given talent to spread love and joy everywhere that she goes. Much of her inspiration comes from her own life experiences, thoughts and feelings provoked from other songs she’s heard. Some of her idols include Stevie Wonder, Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, Billy Holiday and Bob Marley, their lyrics and melodies encouraging many artists through every generation.
As a young female independent artist Chelsea has been faced with many challenges over the years, but she tries to stay focused on the positives knowing everything will work itself out in the end. “It makes it easier, to keep a positive outlook on life instead of focusing on the negatives,” she shares, “Things will always work themselves out and I believe that everything happens for a reason.”
Looking toward the future this multi-talented singer songwriter hopes to win multiple Juno and Grammy awards, going on world tours and just being able to share her music. She is excited at the prospect of working on collaborations with other artists, maybe someday having the opportunity to work with artists like Beres Hammond or Sanchez.
“Keep pushing, don’t give up, no matter what,” she says. “There will be challenges along the way, but as long as you keep a positive outlook and focus on your goals everything will work itself out.”
Chelsea’s mother Karen Stewart has been very supportive of her daughter’s pursuits over the years encouraging her passion in any way that she can, managing her career and helping her co-write her songs. She recalls how Chelsea was born prematurely without a heartbeat and was resuscitated back to life. “For her to be using that same breath to sing now is incredible,” Karen says, “Chelsea is destined for great things down the road and I am here to facilitate her dreams in any way that I can.”
On Friday, September 16th, Chelsea will be performing at the Hard Rock Café in Toronto. Guest are invited to come out and enjoy ‘An Intimate Evening with Chelsea Stewart,’ as she serenades the crowd with her honeyed voice and angelic harmonies. This reggae diva will hit the stage with her new single ‘Do You Love Me,’ and much more!