When acclaimed jazz vocalist Will Downing gushes over Temika Moore, the industry takes notice. Like Maysa and Gregory Porter before her, Moore is not exactly new to music. Her authenticity in a cookie-cutter industry, however, is rare.
“When I first heard Temika sing I said to myself, ‘Finally someone new has come to raise the musical bar. Temika possesses all the elements of a good singer – beautiful tone and phrasing, not to mention her ability to interpret a song,” Downing said.
The Philadelphia native has become the new “it” sound of sultry jazz, headlining summer jazz festivals from Richmond to New York with her latest release “Every Word.”
“I believe as artists we are all somehow amalgamations of everything we’ve heard. I grew up listening to everything from blues to classical. I have always been drawn toward my lower register sisters in song,” Moore said. “I love how artists like Oleta Adams, Lalah Hathaway, Rachelle Ferrell, and Lizz Wright push the limits of the contralto range. It amazes me how they approach interpreting a lyric and that is all fuel for the creation for me. I am forever a student.”
A scholar of music, Moore’s first project in 2002, “Moment of Truth,” showcased her ability to write as well as interpret in the process of developing songs. Saying she would love to work with chart topping artists like Pharrell Williams – who she calls enlightened – Moore’s overnight success is owed in large part to keeping her sound authentic, yet relatable.
“My songs are very much an intimate look into my thought process, my heart, and my spiritual journey. I work very hard to stay clear – mentally, emotionally and spiritually so that when I walk onto a stage or step into a studio to record a song, it is my aim that what is produced in the final product represents who I am 100 percent,” Moore said. “If my words can put an experience into perspective and or encourage someone to experience life on a higher level, then my purpose has been served.”
Her next performance will be at the Creedmoor Music Festival in Creedmoor, North Carolina on Sept. 19. Tickets can be purchased at: www.reverbnation.com
For more information on Moore, visit temikamoore.com