Brandi Shearer grew up on a small farm in rural Oregon. Consequently, she developed first-rate skills in the related fields of shoveling horse manure and bucking hay. She has noticed that other people often find these proficiencies vaguely romantic, although she has yet to understand exactly why. As a youth, she attended a one-room schoolhouse whose total kindergarten-through-eighth grade student body was comprised of 14 children. Her first school sponsored field trip was to the home of a mobile farm butcher, who showed the students how to properly dispatch a cow in an open field.
As a youth, she attended a one-room schoolhouse whose total kindergarten-through-eighth grade student body was comprised of 14 children. Her first school sponsored field trip was to the home of a mobile farm butcher, who showed the students how to properly dispatch a cow in an open field. They had hot chocolate in the farmhouse immediately following and Shearer's most vivid recollection from the day was that she received a significantly lesser amount of marshmallows than everybody else.
Her father bought her a guitar at age eight which precipitated a lifelong fascination with song writing and performance. A successful run as the local go-to entertainment for high school proms, spring flings, and rodeos during her teens gave way to a brief and unfulfilling dalliance with the serious study of operatic voice at a local university. While other budding singer/songwriters were relocating to New York or Los Angeles to pursue success and fame, Shearer decided to move to Eastern Europe where she didn't speak a word of the language or know another living soul. In retrospect, she calls this a "questionable career move."
Shearer spent years living the expatriate life in Hungary and later, in France. During this period, she was exposed to the works of venerated American blues and jazz musicians, an experience she found revelatory and one that would inform her own songwriting for years to come. After a longish time performing in small European clubs and select living rooms, she returned to the States to pursue a career on home soil.
The next few years brought steadily growing success for Shearer, including the release of two independently produced albums (Music of A Saturday Night and The Sycamore) which garnered the early support of local San Francisco radio heavy KFOG and glowing reviews from local and national press. In 2006, she signed to the brand-new Amoeba Records after a chance meeting with Amoeba's founder, Dave Prinz, during a show at San Francisco's Caf? du Nord.
Close to Dark, created with celebrated producer Larry Klein (Madeleine Peyroux, Joni Mitchell), is Shearer's first release on the Amoeba label, and will be available in stores nationwide on August 28th, 2007.
In private life, Shearer enjoys dogs, making butter, spending long stretches of time in New York City, and encouraging responsible stewardship of the environment. She currently lives in San Francisco.