b. Ledisi Anibade Young, 28th March 1972, New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.A.
Ledisi hails, originally, from New Orleans, but grew up mainly in Oakland.
She and her band are from a new breed of modern soul singers (that fall into the New Organic Soul movement in the U.K.) that do not bow to the formulated 'pop' format that permeates the national charts of the U.K. and the U.S.A.
Her mother sang in an R & B band and opened her daughter's ears to classical music, then to jazz and gospel.
My mother is an inspiration to me because she was an R & B singer when I was growing up, and I'd watch her perform in the park by our house. I grew up on Earth, Wind and Fire. Tina Turner is my favorite.
As a teenager Ledisi first sang in a friends band, but soon realised she'd have to form her own if she was going to get the creative freedom she desired.
She formed the group Anibade.
The band consisted of:
Sundra Manning (keyboards)
Cedrickke Dennis (guitar)
Nelson Braxton (bass)
Wayne Braxton (saxophone)
Tommy Bradford (drums)
Anibade means my mother is great in Yoruba and also happens to be Ledisi's middle name.
The band the group performed at several nightspots including Bruno's, The Black Cat, and Rasselas, in the San Francisco area before, successfully, getting a local radio station, KMEL, to play the single Take Time, without any major label distribution.
Ledisi said, We took it to other labels to try and get a deal, but we found that they didn't get it 'cause it wasn't already out there. We got frustrated with that.
Ledisi is said to be recording a jazz record with bassist Marcus Shelby on Noir Records.
That album was due in early 2000, although the set has not yet surfaced.
soulsinger - 2000 / feeling orange, sometimes blue - 2002
Her first solo album Soulsinger, was, however, released in 2000, to critical acclaim.
The album addressed several personal issues, none more so than the track Papa Loved To Love Me, a harrowing tale of a father sexually abusing his daughter.
The track is uncomfortably close to home.
Ledisi said My family heard it, though, and they said, 'Wow, you went and told everything!'. I know it's giving something away about myself, but it's a part of me. That's why people relate to a story like that.
A second album entitled 'Feeling Orange And Sometimes Blue' was released in early 2002.
Ledisi travelled to London's Jazz Cafe in March 2003 for more gigs following a successful concert at Subterranea in the autumn of 2002.
She was supported by the Braxton Brothers along with several other performers.
lost and found - 2007 / turn me loose - 2009
The album 'Lost and Found' saw her first major label release for the Verve imprint in 2007, which was followed on by a festive album, and a 2009 release 'Turn Me Loose'.
pieces of me - 2011 / the truth - 2014
Soulsinger (U.S. LeSun Records 2000)
Feeling Orange And Sometimes Blue (U.S. LeSun Records 2002)
Soulsinger - The Revival (U.S. LeSun Records 2003)
Lost And Found (Verve Forecast Records 2007)
It's Christmas (Verve Records 2008)
Turn Me Loose (Verve Records 2009)
Pieces Of Me (Verve Records 2011)
The Truth (Import Records 2014)