October 12 - Concord, CA.; Multiple Grammy and American Music Award nominee SHEILA E. has signed a long-term recording contract with Concord Records, which is releasing her Writes of Passage CD this week. Best-known for her mid-80's hit, The Glamorous Life, and for her work with Prince, Sheila E. is a celebrated percussionist and vocalist and has worked with such notables as Diana Ross, Marvin Gaye, Don Was, Stevie Nicks, and many others.
Writes of Passage marks her first release in nearly 8 years. An enchanting mix of adult contemporary, funk, and jazz music, Writes of Passage features Sheila's long-time performing band, which includes former Prince alumni Eric Leeds on saxophone, and Sheila's brother Peter Michael Escovedo on drums and vocals. There's also a heavy Latin vibe at work, which draws upon her proud Mexican heritage on the side of her father, world renowned percussionist (and fellow Concord Records artist) Pete Escovedo, with whom she often records and tours.
I enjoyed taking a break from performing for a number of years, but after a certain period of time I felt I was ready to get out and play again, so I put a new band together," says Sheila. The main thing was jamming and having fun with original material, and it was amazing to see how many devoted fans came out to see me again. The original two month tour went so well that eventually we decided to go ahead and do a record. No huge concept, no deep message, just sharing with the world what we'd been up to, playing great music with great musicians."
The album title refers to the many different experiences we go through in life, with each song telling a different story," Sheila continues. It's a testament to my journey thus far, sort of a chronicle of where I'm at today, years after 'The Glamorous Life' days."
Sheila has recorded previously for Warner Brothers and Paisley Park, Prince's record label. She broke new ground by being the first female bandleader in late night television history, when she was featured on Magic Johnson's show, The Magic Hour." She has also been instrumental in raising money and awareness for various charities, including the Pediatric AIDS Foundation and Super Bowl at Seau's for Breast Cancer Foundation. Sheila currently co-chairs Li'l Angel Bunnies," a newly formed charitable organization earmarked to contribute to the welfare and needs of abused, neglected and underprivileged children around the world. She has developed a line of percussion instruments for children, in association with TOCA and Kaman Music, which is distributed worldwide. She was recently featured in the all-star opening segment, a tribute to the late Tito Puente, on the first ever Latin Grammy Awards television show, along with Gloria Estefan, Ricky Martin, and Andy Garcia.