Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

You've got to see Sharane Calister sing this summer

Sharane Calister performs during a taping for the broadcast special "Juneteenth:: The Movement" at xBk in Des Moines.
Madeleine C King
Sharane Calister performs during a taping for the broadcast special "Juneteenth:: The Movement" at xBk in Des Moines.

The Des Moines based artist blew us away with her vocal performance during the taping of "Juneteenth: The Movement 2022."

Sharane Calister has experienced heartbreak; you can hear it in her voice. Her songs have this way of transporting you home. But she’s also got a way of putting you right to the middle of a crowded partyand making you want to throw your shoe and holler. She’s fresh off a well-deserved buzzer beating performance on NBC’s "The Voice" where she got to work with Alicia Keys.

Her musical journey has been deeply connected to family since she was young — she grew up in the foster care system, was separated from her siblings, and then was reunited in music class with her twin sister. She says she continues to pull on the support of family and friends as she pursues a career she was destined for. I listened to her music and then spoke with her about her journey. Grab some headphones, and get ready for some neo-soul/R&B/pop. You won’t be disappointed.

What was your experience like when working with artists like Alicia Keys? 

“It was mind blowing. Let me tell you the first time I met Alicia Keys, I just had to remember to breathe. I was like 'breathe Sharane and quit staring at her.' Seeing my idol that I've listened to my whole childhood was just truly amazing. She gave me such good advice, and till this day I use it. I will always cherish the moments that I had on 'The Voice.' The things that she taught me definitely changed my life. I give a shout out to 'The Voice' for that.”

What has been your favorite performance? 

“When I sang 'Never Enough' on 'The Voice.' That’s my favorite performance till this day. I would definitely say I remember that day like it was yesterday. I went backstage and after I sang that song all the production, the camera crew, the makeup crew, I mean everybody just stopped and was staring at me. I was like, why is everyone staring at me? Somebody finally told me like, girl, what you just did was amazing. People were crying. I didn't expect that, but I was feeling it on stage. When I came offstage, that solidified that I really, really touched people in that moment. That performance will always be a reminder of how I can really influence people with my voice, and how it affects people. So yeah, I still listen to it and go back and watch the video.”

What message do you hope to spread through your music?

“Definitely positivity. I want people to listen to my music and be happy. Sometimes I'll have sad songs, because I know people can relate to that… The new song that I wrote called It's Okay Not To Be Okay — I just want people to know that at the end of the day, it truly is just okay not to be okay. The one thing I like to say that Alicia Keys said to me is that “life can go your way.” That's one message that I want to share through my music. No negativity is coming towards me or my music.”

Who do you feel are your biggest supporters? 

“I would definitely say my family. My whole family are ride or dies for real. When they come, they show out. I love my family, they're definitely my biggest supporters. I couldn't do it without them. Every time I look into the audience, I know there's somebody that's in my family that’s going to be there supporting me.”

How do you balance being both a mom and a singer?

“It's hard. It's definitely hard, but I tell you what, the support that I have from my family and my fiancé is definitely outstanding. He is the biggest help I've ever had, because he knows that this is my life. This is my dream. And he knows that I want to do this for my daughter as well. I want her to grow up to know it’s okay to follow your dreams. Mommy did it, and so can you. I know when I'm on stage or if I have to go out of town that she's taken care of because Daddy's taking care of her. So, I'm truly blessed to have the support that I do.”

What performances are you looking forward to?

“Well, I'm busy this summer. I'd say I’m excited for my next few shows at Noir which is located in Ames. I'll be there on the 25 of June from 7-10 p.m. The cover is $15 at the door.

I am also performing with the Feel Right Band at the Yacht Club. We have a residency there, so we're there for the first Fridays of every month.

The next show will be July 1, which is on a Friday. We're usually performing from 9 - midnight. The other show that we have coming up is at Kenny's garage on July 2. So yeah, we have back-to-back shows for the July weekend.”

What does your ideal future look like?

“My ideal future looks like having a couple albums out. I always say this because I want to speak it into existence, but I want to win a Grammy. I really want to win a Grammy. So, I'm going to pray about that one. I’d also like to have a bigger fan base and raise my daughter and teach her to know that you can do anything that you set your mind to. I want to show her that mommy's out here trying to grind so we can make it. So she doesn't have to struggle like I did. I was in the foster care system. I don't want her to go through what I went through. My main goal is to provide for my family. My future looks very, very bright. I just want to expand my music and touch people's hearts because that one song could make somebody's day. I want my song to be that song. That's what I look forward to in the future.”

Carrie Lawal
Contributing writer