Kelea (aka Kelly Gardner) is a versatile West Australian music artist.
She is an acoustic singer/songwriter who plays piano whilst harmonising and looping. She is also an emerging electro-pop artist and formidable session rock vocalist. All whilst residing in the country.
Whether she is singing a gentle ballad at the piano, recording thought-provoking country-influenced originals with West Australian Music (WAM), performing her powerful anthem "Evolution" for a Women of Music Production Perth Showcase or blowing the roof off a city pub with that impressive set of rock lungs of hers, KELEA is a force to be reckoned with and makes no apologies for her leaps between genres.
Her 2017 debut instalment EVOLUTION is a powerful anthem combining house beats with prayer-like lyrics and massive sonic walls of vocal harmony. Never afraid to take risks and break down genre-instilled barriers, KELEA tastefully cross-pollinates EVOLUTION with a careful sprinkling of rock (and even operatic!) vocal lines, reinforcing underlying hopes for a higher world consciousness. Recordings of fierce winter winds from her former ocean side studio complete the track, making for an inspired listen.
In 2019, Kelea made it to the Top 100 of the Voice Season 8 Blind Auditions.
Now living in rural inland Australia, KELEA has released a country-influenced ballad entitled DEAR SIR/MADAM on WAM’s compilation album “Demos from the Wheatbelt”, recorded at the Cummins Theatre in Merredin with Rada Studios. In DEAR SIR/MADAM, KELEA puts to music quotes from an emotionless, corporate “rejection letter” addressed to an unsuccessful mature-age candidate, highlighting the painful inequities of ageism and unemployment and challenging the listener to re-think the next time they press "send". A thought-provoking music video (written by KELEA) and directed by the multi-talented, award-winning Robert Woods completes the piece. Filmed on site with sunlight beams pouring through the theatre windows and featuring the outstanding acting talents of the Merredin Repertory Club, it is both poignant and moving.
In early 2020, Kelea has now released "Are You Ok?" - a special thank you to firefighters for whom rural dwellers like Kelea are especially grateful to. Without them, we would not survive.
After initially completing Law and Commerce degrees at the University of Western Australia and working in corporate environments, KELEA studied vocals at WAAPA and also later completed aural and songwriting studies at the Victorian College of the Arts and NMIT. KELEA has been performing in various musical genres for over 20 years and is now preparing to release her debut EP in the latter half of 2020.
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