About Shei Atkins
Biography I got shot one time/in my back with a nine/bullet came right out/man I promise I aint lyin/I got the scar to prove it/fought the war to do this/got to let the world know that God brought me through this
I got shot The Lita Mae Show
That simple refrain from the third cut of Shei Atkins sophomore effort, 2006s The Lita Mae Show, tells you everything you need to know about the Grammy nominated R&B songstress whose, soulful style and straightforward, honest lyrics have made her a favorite among gospel and secular music fans alike.
Born and raised in Houstons notorious Acres Homes area, once considered to be the largest unincorporated African American community in the South, and a haven for drugs and crime during the 80s and 90s Atkins, 25, was subjected to many hardships early in life.
It was, however, being robbed of her innocence by a bullet at the tender age of 13 as she describes in the lyrics of I got shot that became the catalyst for her transformation from a talented but undisciplined neophyte into the vocal tour-de-force Atkins represents today.
I was a disobedient kid in the wrong place at the wrong time, she says, summing up the seminal event, which would never have taken place if she had followed her Mothers admonitions not to go to a party she wanted to attend.
It changed my life because it surviving the attack let me know that God has a purpose for me. That purpose according to Shei is her music: A medium she uses not only to spread His word but to share the stories of her own triumphs, failures and suffering; connecting with her fans on a much more personal level than much of the formulaic MTV-Ready fare currently dominating the racks.
With two award-winning albums in the bag, Atkins isnt taking time off to enjoy her success. Between touring and performing all over the country with the likes of Kirk Franklin, Fred Hammond, Tonex, J.Moss, Avant and her idol Mary J. Blige, Atkins has found time to get back to the studio and is already hard at work on her next album, tentatively title Girl Talk, scheduled to be released in 2007.
Covering topics as diverse as depression and rape, Shei describes the project as an empowerment record.
We as women go through so much, I wanted to talk about It," says Shei, who feels her trials and tribulations as a youth and young marriage give her credibility when talking about relationships and other hardships women face. Marriage, love life, relationships things that you deal with everyday. This album is more for the ladies.
Under the tutelage of late Destinys Child co-founder Ann Tillman, Shei honed her singing and performance skills, recording two well received demos and receiving her first big break when she was offered a chance to sing on Houston rapper, and underground legend, Lil Os debut album with MCA in 1997.
Following the death of Tillman from Lupus, Atkins found herself taking a sabbatical from music to reevaluate her paths in both life and music. After a short period of time in which she reconciled her love for the hard-hitting beats and themes of popular R&B and rap music of the day with her intrinsic talent for gospel, Shei was reunited with platinum hit maker Simon Crazy C Cullins Jr.
Cullins, who produced the Lil O track Atkins sang backup on, was reintroduced to Shei by her husband producer Drathoven whom she met at the age of 16 at the Spirit of Life Church, which they both still attend today, and married at 19, had just founded a record label especially suited for her style called Soulmuzick with his friend Madd Hatta of KBXX radio. After cutting a few demos with Soulmuzick, Atkins was signed by the label immediately once its proprietors saw the way she connected with the audience during her live performances. Life in Stereo
Sheis first release on Soulmuzick Life in Stereo dropped in 2004 to positive reviews and earned her best new artist honors at the 2005 Urban Gospel Awards, as well as nods for disc of the year and female artist of the year at The Texas Holy Hip Hop Achievement Awards. In 2006 Atkins followed up on her initial success with the release of The Lita Mae Show.
Highlighted by guest appearances from top industry talent like platinum rapper Paul Wall, and the writing talents of Tabu who co-wrote Whitney Houstons last album, the CD has received critical acclaim from program directors and DJs, many praising Atkins ability to weave important messages with entertaining and ultimately head-nodding beats.
Yes. Whenever, I am asked. Yes. Holy Hip Hop Atlanta 2007
Mary J. Blige, Karen Clark Sheard
The Tracks are done by Hot Production Team The BeatCo. out of Houston. The producers of Paul Wall, Chamillionaire and others. The team is headed up by platinum producer Crazy C. who has worked with OutKast, Goodie Mob, Naughty by Nature, Scarface, Jodeci, Eightball & MJG and others.
If need some heat get at them at http://www.hiphopmastering.com