Artist Spotlight: Elle Varner
Superstar Alicia Keys brought along a mix of veteran and budding musicians to her January 7, 2010 performance at the Apollo Theater. Among the group was Los Angeles native Elle Varner, whose unsuspecting vocal and songwriting ability had the NY Post referring to her as a “new diamond of brilliance.” Elle’s signed with MBK/J-RCA Records last October, and recently inked a co-publishing agreement with Sony Music Publishing.
Never heard of acoustic pop sensation Elle before? That’s okay. That’s what we’re here for—to put you on before everybody else jumps on the bandwagon. The recent NYU graduate is an extremely talented songstress, but saying that won’t do much to convince you. In fact, the more I type, the less likely you’ll believe me. Instead, I’ll let the music speak for itself. Brace yourself, because what you’re about to hear may turn you into a fan with the quickness.
Adele’s “Chasing Pavements”
Elle effortlessly covers Adele’s smash hit, singing it acapella with just her snapping to keep her company, and belts the entire song out as if she wrote it herself. Goose bumps should set in at about :45, and should increase in size upon the video’s completion. Don’t be surprised if you run the video back a few times; it’s that good, we know.
The Fugee’s “Killing Me Softly” and Lauryn Hill’s “That Thing” (Live)
Elle’s show at the Bowery Poetry Club in NYC brought out the die-hard Elle fanatics, who screamed things like “L. Boogie Varner” because of how well she mastered Lauryn Hill’s vocals in the song, yet made it her own. But it’d be too easy if she stopped there. In the second clip, she decides to diversify things a bit, spitting Hill’s lyrics for “That Thing” with the showmanship and enthusiasm of a hip-hop artist at the height of their career.
Oh, and if you caught Nyle’s video for “Let The Beat Build,” you probably saw Elle as one of the two female vocalists initiating the beat build. I’ve thrown the video in for good measure so you can both enjoy more of her sounds and watch arguably one of the best music videos at the same time.