Friday, February 19, 2016

Erica Chase

One of the most fascinating things about hosting Unplugged and Totally Uncut is getting to meet the artists before they become the stars featured at the award shows. This girl is fresh from the streets of Classic Rock Los Angeles style. And yet she's got a spin with her writing that slips her into the category of a modern wave of Sheryl Crowe. From the iHeart Radio Studio this is newcomer Erica Chase. Sometimes it takes a near-death experience to find out what you really want from life. That was exactly the case with new music artist, Erica Chase, when a freak accident nearly cost her, her life. Erica’s love of music began at the age of 7. “Something just clicked for me when I listened to music and I knew I had to learn to play the guitar,” she said. “It sparked something in me.” That spark very nearly got extinguished when, while still in grade school, Erica got up the courage to audition for the school play. The teacher stopped her halfway through the song and gave her some harsh criticism that took an emotional toll on the 7-year-old. “She told me that I couldn’t sing; that I didn’t have a good enough voice. And I believed her. That belief stayed with me for a long time.” Erica turned away from her true calling for years; choosing instead to devote her energies to sports. Music, though, was always in the back of her mind, never fully loosening its grasp on her. Years later, Erica began her last semester at Pitzer College thinking that she would use her English degree and become a teacher. It was the path she thought she should take, even though her heart was not invested. However, when a teaching program geared towards education in inner city schools rejected her, life became suddenly unclear. Though she fronted her college band, both singing and playing guitar, and was passionate about music, she admittedly didn’t know the first thing about the music industry. That was until Erica managed to arrange a phone call with a prominent artist manager/producer who would later play a key role in Erica’s life and career. This call had a profound effect on Erica; it gave her something she had not felt about having a music career: hope and encouragement. In a bizarre twist of fate less than 24 hours later, while riding her bicycle to meet a friend for lunch Erica was hit by a truck and nearly killed. She was transferred to a flight-for-life helicopter. “Everything went completely white,” says Chase of that day. “I’ve heard other near death stories where people talk about the white light, but to actually see it is a visual I will never shake.” It was a big wake up call for Erica; she had a new appreciation for the fragility of life and realized she had to follow her true passion for music. “I suddenly realized how tenuous our grasp on life is – how impermanent we are. That’s the moment I knew I had to put everything else aside and pursue my music, chase my dreams, and live every moment like it’s my last and hopefully I will inspire others to never give up on their own dreams.” Now after investing relentless time developing her own sound, Erica is ready to meet the world.

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