Sarah Shafey is a Canadian singer, producer, and mixing engineer. Shafey has been around in the Toronto music scene for more than a decade wearing many hats behind the scenes, mixing albums for bands across genres and recording at her studio Squeaky Clean Records. Her personal sound over the past decade has grown from piano folk-pop to her now distinguished emotive alternative and grungy shoegaze rock sound. Sarah Shafey delivered a badass and edgy single titled “Suzy Q”. “Suzy Q” immediately captured my attention by the first note. The staccato rhythmic verses complemented by Sarah’s voguish yet sassy with a hint of sensual vocal resonance to drives the beloved "Suzy Q" forward in our memories. Sarah Shafey has all the right elements that makes her a hit rock n roll vocalist and a standout artist. “Suzy Q” displays her intricate vocals alongside atmospheric and sensational electric guitar chords, creating the ultimate grunge scenario for you. You become lost inside the whole rebellious aura she fabricates for you. Ripped denim jeans, 90’s, leather jackets, hairsprays, motorcycles, and bubblegum is the image I was able to manufacture in my head while listening to this classic grimey rock hit!
Add some grungy vibes to your Spotify playlist with Sarah Shafey's "Suzy Q"
Scroll down for Sarah's exclusive interview!
Tell us a little bit about your first album release “Tiny Music Box” in 2008, were you able to discover your artistry?
That is a great question. “Tiny Music Box” was my first attempt at a full album. At the time I had no idea what I was doing but I knew that I loved to play piano, sing, and I wanted to learn how to use audio recording/editing software. I discovered through that album that I have a love for the producing, writing, mixing, and recording process and however much my sound has evolved and changed over the years, it was a great start at getting my voice and words out there into a tangible form.
You released your second album “Maverick” in 2013, knowing the major time difference in years, is there any reason why you were on a brief hiatus between both albums?
It seems to be the trend with all of my albums. I love the creative process and don’t feel the need to rush it. I really put a lot of my heart and soul into my music and try to learn something new with each album; whether that be new producing technics, learning something about a new genre, collaborating and writing with other producers and musicians, spending time mixing, etc. I have no desire to pump out track after track for the sake of it. I am doing this for art and love and time is of no essence when it comes to making music for me. Also, I really like to tell a great story so I need some life to happen in between so I have something to write about lol.
Describe how different your latest album release “Peaches n Cream” is from your past two?
I think I was in more of a chill headspace but the time I started writing “Peaches n Cream”. I usually start writing a new album as I am at the tail end of finishing my previous one. With “Maverick” I was letting out all of the angst over many a life circumstance and by the time I was done I felt the need to explore a more low key side of alternative. I love “Peaches n Cream” because it’s a fitting story and sound for where I was at that point. I guess it’s always about whatever my mood is at that point in time. The album that I am working on now explores the pop/electro side of grunge rock. Fundamentally there is always alternative at the core but I love to challenge exactly what that means by adding layers of other genres on top. Alternative rock is the ice-cream and the other genres are the delicious toppings.
Back to your second album release “Maverick” do you have any personal favorites off the album? If so which and why?
I love that whole album. The women who helped me write and produce that one, (Donna Grantis), is also playing guitar and play she does. I am a sucker for a good guitar shred and there are so many guitar shreds that it is hard to decide. If I had to pick I’d go with “Swim”, “Suzy Q”, “Foot In Mouth Disease”, and “A Leisurely Pace” because they all tell a great story about being a powerful woman in a world where powerful women don’t reign supreme.
"Suzy Q" is a rocking hit! What inspired you to write it?
Thank you. It was a few things that led to that song. I used to live in a place in Toronto where I’d see the same woman on the street corner every single day. Like clockwork she was there all dolled up and waiting and than she’d be gone just like that; next day same thing. I’d also just finished watching a documentary on the annual Players Ball. I wondered what life looked like through that lens, perhaps with a slightly desensitized view.
Connect with Sarah on the artist's website and socials: