The term ‘genre-defying’ can instill fear in the heart of any music executive and test even the most seasoned journalist. Vocalist and songwriter, Sierra Hurtt, challenges you to expand your concept of what a song can express. She writes from her soul, but she can also tap into the essence of a song you already know and give it new meaning.
The daughter of award-winning rhythm and blues songwriter, Phil Hurtt, Sierra was immersed in the business of music from an early age. At her father’s knee, she learned the art and craft of composing the well-rounded pop song. As young as 4 years old, she became a regular fixture in the famed recording studios of Philadelphia, rubbing shoulders with Philly’s Soul elite. But it was her teenage love affair with rock and roll that sparked her imagination and pushed her to develop her own unique sound. After releasing the EP, 8 or 80, in 2009, followed by two singles, Sierra decided it was time to record a full-length album.
Recorded in three countries, Stranger takes the listener on an intriguing journey. Sierra calls upon several of the talented friends she’s made over the last few years, including Portuguese musician Frankie Chavez, as well as Rui Costa and Pedro Santos (both of Caruma, Brass Guitar Club Band, and Silence 4). Frequent collaborator Merv Carswell (England), and former guitarist Skeet Williams (Wales) also make cameos. Back home, she also founded new partnerships with Daniel Bacon (Wellstar), Russell Gellman and Sam McIlvain. Toss in brief but memorable contributions from Murat Keyder (Turkey) and Geir Øverland (Norway), and you have an international cast of characters.
Admittedly, Sierra's catalog is an unusual mix of styles, but with one unifying thread: the energy of live performance filtered through Sierra’s meticulous attention to detail as a producer. In this environment, Sierra thrives; exploring the mystifying coexistence of both frailty and strength in the human spirit. She dares you to take the journey with her, across borders and boundaries, beyond genre, and into the realm of possibility. She promises to show you where the locals hang out, avoiding the tourist traps and the postcard moments, to find what’s real and what’s true. In that, she is the perfect guide.