Adrienne Shamszad is a singer-songwriter known for her special blend of folk, soul, blues and Eastern influenced improvisational vocals. Her lyrics are poetic, intimate, genuine and inspired by the mystic Poets of Iran as much as the folk poet-songwriters of the 60s and 70s. Her strong and soulful voice, skillful and complex guitar work and bold performance style have made her a popular California performer for well over a decade.
Adrienne is an Oakland, California native of Persian heritage who has traveled extensively, studying and bringing her music throughout Asia, India and the Middle East. Her mission is clear: to weave together the threads of her study and creativity into an original musical fabric that moves and inspires her audiences. Her impressive musical range extends from the sacred to the profane, the mystical to the earthy, the lofty to the down-low, and she is equally at home with acoustic or electric, improvisation, singing gospel, Indian mantras, rock and roll, rhythm and blues and Persian classics.
Since beginning formal training in Persian music in 2016, Adrienne's music has expanded to a genre of it's own. She sings the blues, lullabies, love songs, revolutionary anthems and prayerful power ballads in English and in Farsi. She mixes her own lyrics with those of the essential Persian poets such as Hafez, Rumi and Saadi and brings the messages of her ancestors into the present moment. In 2018, Adrienne won the Living Cultures grant through the Alliance for California Traditional Arts (ACTA) to deepen her study of Persian Classical singing with master teacher and vocalist Mahsa Vahdat. Through working with Mahsa, an internationally celebrated artist and mentor, Adrienne has developed a well-rounded vocal repertoire of original and traditional pieces.
In addition to writing, recording and performing, Adrienne also shares her musical gifts as a vocal, guitar and songwriting coach. Her many years of training with baritone and master teacher Zachary Gordin have provided a rock solid foundation for Adrienne's teachings in vocal technique and theory. Her dedication to the study of guitar and composition and her love of teaching have made Adrienne a successful Bay Area musical resource for over a decade.
Adrienne has performed with beloved and renowned artists such as Kitka, David Wilcox, SOVÓSO, Coleman Barks and Mahsa Vahdat. She has been in productions by groups such as The Berkeley Repertory Theater, Golden Thread Productions and Diaspora Arts Connection. She has supported dozens of other artists develop and hone their craft. Adrienne will continue to offer all she can as she herself evolves and grows as an artist, a teacher and a woman.