Who is this gem of a Canadian artist?
To say she is uncompromising would be an understatement. Nussey has forged a career in one of the most difficult industries. Existing slightly below the commercial music radars and slightly above the average house concert performer there is a virtue that has remained constant in this tenacious individual’s career: Her songwriting and performance keep getting better.
Nussey is set to release her sixth album, “Still Hope” this coming Spring and with a mind set of self-respect and humility, it will a be a release to remember for the 36 year old singer.
“I’ve been through a series of life-changing events in the past five years…some of which have led me to believe I may not return to the music industry. But music keeps calling me back and I’ve stopped questioning why. I just go where the wind blows me these days.”
And windy it has been.
Nussey had originally released her album under her married name “Angela Evans” and was scheduled to perform at the Global Woman Summit in Oct. 2011 for luminaries such as The Obamas and Oprah Winfrey…an event that was cancelled just one day before performance.
“I can’t say I wasn’t devastated. And the months following were even more disappointing. We has such a strong belief that this album could cut through in the Adult Contemporary genre, but with our big opportunity gone, we knew it would take somewhat of a miracle for an independent artist like me to break through in such a commercially dominated genre.”
But the winds changed again. Five months after the GWS cancellation, the songwriter took a temporary job stuffing envelopes in an office in Toronto, she befriended co-worker and former dance music producer Marc Pompeo (MPE project) who was quick to notice her talents and within a month created dance remixes for four of Nussey’s songs. MPE project released two of the songs into the Toronto Dance Club circuit and by May 2012 Ontario, Quebec, Brazil, and some of the Caribbean Islands were playing her remixed songs.
Nussey watched the momentum of the newly formed MPE project and she began to regain her belief that she still had something to offer as a songwriter and performer.
“The Global Woman Summit caused me to want “more” from my career and I prepared, like an Olympic Athlete, in order to meet and exceed all expectations. So when I found out that, despite all my efforts, it actually wouldn’t be happening, my ego was devastated and angry. I felt I was holding an album which, by all standards, should bring me “more” in my career. But that elusive “more” word brings nothing but longing into my life and I eventually learned that if I were to continue on this musical path, I would have to appreciate the gifts I’d already been granted.”
And gifts she has. Nussey is no slouch when it comes to performance with an incredible, dynamic and uplifting voice, she has won numerous awards including Best Vocal Performance at the Northern Ontario Music Awards, Best Folk Act at the Toronto Independent Music Awards, and Female Performer of the year (two years running) at the Toronto Independent Music Awards.
But it is her songwriting that sets Nussey apart with an honesty and creativity likened to artists such as Bruce Springsteen and Garth Brooks, with melodies that ring like a Josh Groban or Celine Dion performance. Having recently won Best Country Song in the Great American Song Contest (Warm Hands), and been nominated for SOCAN Songwriter of the Year at the Northern Ontario Music and Film Awards (Still Hope), Nussey isn’t doing too badly for an artist who’s had a slow year.
“I have to laugh when I start to think things haven’t been going well this year. It’s funny how well things go when you stop staring at them intensely,” she laughs.
And with the staring ceased and her sights set on re-releasing her album under her former Stage name, Nussey will embark on the next step of her topsy-turvy musical journey, only this time with eyes wide open.
“I think there comes a point in everyone’s life, when you realize that there is no, straight path to the end. No matter how hard you try for it, life will never be boring. The only thing that can remain constant is how you react to all the strange things that occur around you. It is my goal to live lightly, to treat myself kindly, to forgive easily, and to take everything a lot less seriously.”