Sunshine Anderson Rises
Weeks after announcing its affiliation with Atlantic Records, Los Angeles-based Soulife Entertainment is already sitting comfortably in the top-10 of Billboard's Hot R&B/ Hip-Hop Singles & TraWeeks after announcing its affiliation with Atlantic Records, Los Angeles-based Soulife Entertainment is already sitting comfortably in the top-10 of Billboard's Hot R&B/ Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks chart with Sunshine Anderson's first single, "Heard It All Before."
And coming April 17 is the singer's "I'm every woman"-themed debut album, "Your Woman."
"Sunshine is your woman," Anderson says, discussing the concept behind the album's title. "Whatever you need her to be, however she works for you, whatever she does for you -- she's your woman."
The universal themes heard on "Your Woman" stem from Anderson's collaborations with producer and Soulife VP of A&R Mike City. "Mike and I talk on the phone all the time about different issues I may be going through," says the artist. "So when we sit down and write a song, it's normally about an issue I've dealt with, either personally or through a friend."
The success of "Heard It All Before" illustrates just how relatable those issues are.
"'Heard It All Before' is the truth, talking about the tactics that men use," says the singer about the song that currently stands at No. 7. "Women have heard it all before, and it works both ways too. When I first heard the track, I loved it. But I had no idea it would be as big as it is as fast.
"While I love 'Heard,' we did that two years ago," she adds. "My voice has developed since then -- and so have I. The rest of the album's songs are even more soulful. So if people like 'Heard,' they're going to love the album."
It doesn't hurt Anderson's cause that she's managed by Grammy-winning singer Macy Gray and Gray's partner, Kobi Wu, for Scam Inc. "Chris [Dawley, Soulife CEO] introduced me to Macy, and we had hung out every now and then," says Anderson. "She's always had some advice for me. She knew I didn't have management, but she saw my potential. I figured, 'Why not? She's been in this business for a while, so who better to manage me?' "
With the ink on the Soulife/Atlantic pact barely dry, Anderson has quickly become the label's signature artist -- a responsibility she gladly accepts.
"It was scary at first, but I've been with Soulife for nine years," says Anderson. "I remember when it wasn't Soulife. We're a family, and I've grown with them. I'm totally comfortable being in the forefront because I have that family foundation behind me. I don't know how people do this without that."
That support system extends beyond Soulife, as Atlantic executives are in the cheering section. "When I first met her, she completely lit up the room," Atlantic Records executive VP/office of the chair Craig Kallman says. "She's charming, personable, and has a soulfulness that translates into her music."
Atlantic is putting a spin on the conventional promotional tour by having Anderson visit high schools in 12 cities, including her hometown of Charlotte, N.C. Atlantic has also teamed with the House of Courvoisier for a 10-city showcase tour.