Jul 31, 2011
| Lindsay Ell
Like many music legends that have gone before her, Lindsay Ell's formula for success has three parts: talent, dedication and passion.
Born and raised in Calgary, Alberta, Lindsay exhibited talent early on, playing the piano at six. Around that time she discovered her father's collection of guitars scattered throughout the house, and felt the lure of another form of musical expression. At eight, she switched instruments. "I fell in love with the guitar," says Lindsay. "It's a huge part of who I am." While most high school students focus on their social lives, Lindsay was building a career, immersing herself in writing songs, honing her craft and touring Alberta.
Her prodigious talent stunned her audiences. The list of her fans grew to include BTO and Guess Who songwriter/guitarist Randy Bachman, who produced her first album.
Today, Bachman remains a mentor and friend. Among all the advice he's shared, the most memorable lesson is also the most simple, "Be yourself." These words have become a mantra for Lindsay, who views the world simultaneously with the wonderment of a wide-eyed girl and the wisdom of an old soul.
"Working with Randy brought out many different influences," she says, and helped her to find her true musical path.
She'd listened to artists like Bonnie Raitt, Eric Clapton, and John Mayer from a young age, but the work of the masters soon became an obsession for her. Lindsay fell in love with the blues.
Since working with Bachman, she's lived and breathed music, committing herself to creating meaningful melodies and cordial lyrics. It's evident from songs like Constantly Be' and Alone' that her spiritual depth far exceeds her earthly years of twenty.
"With each new song, I keep raising the bar. I want people to be able to see that I have something to say and what music means to me."
This is perhaps the most important aspect of Lindsay's burgeoning career…her passion not only for music, but also for life.
In addition to working with Bachman, Lindsay has collaborated with Danny Michel, Russell Broom, Bill Bell, Damhnait Doyle; and has also shared the stage across North America with Suzie McNeil, Shawn Mullins, Serena Ryder, and blues pioneer Buddy Guy. This surreal experience culminated when Guy – one of Lindsay's childhood idols – saw her open for him and called her onstage to play with him.
"It's amazing how things happen once you focus on your happiness," Lindsay says. "I become more and more thankful every day."
Her emotive style, at the forefront of both her recordings and live presence, comes from Lindsay's desire to connect with her audience. "Instead of just playing, I'm really about the feel of the music and talking through my guitar to connect with my audience."
"It's really inspiring, that moment when someone responds to your music," she says.
Lindsay's aspiration to succeed on her own terms has made her pragmatic about the journey before her. Despite everything she's experienced – recording with Randy Bachman, trading licks on stage with Buddy Guy - she keeps herself focused on always doing the right thing to ensure a long-term successful career. "As long as passion is that driving force, it will get you through the hard times."
After all, legends aren't born. They're made from talent, but more importantly hard work and commitment.
And if this is the formula for success, Lindsay Ell is certainly a legend in the making.
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