Zoe Ellis: Songstress


Q#1: Are you a Bay Area Native? and if not, how long have you lived in the Bay? Zoe: Sure I consider myself one. The family drove across country when I was 1 for the job my pop got at the UC. So though I was born on Long Island, I consider myself a native to Berkeley through and through.

Q#2: When did you start on the creative path you are currently on? Zoe: Ooooo hard to answer that one. Music came my way early in the family home, but the path to singing was presented to me when I was about 8 originally. By Faye Kelly. Mother of Terrence Kelly, local Gospel hero and longtime director of Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir. His mom was the first choir director at Cazadero Family Camp. My father was on the board of Camps Inc that ran it so we were there all summer. She heard me yelling for my brother (Dave Ellis) across camp and grabbed me by my jacket hood and said ‘if you can yell that loud you can sing’. That was that.
Presently, the path I’m on , well in all honesty I feel like each time I think of what new thing I want to try or do and then speak it out loud it comes to me. I fell pretty lucky that way. So recently I said into the sky, “Ok Ok I’m ready to lead my own thing again, use this new voice I’m working on and be responsible for the booking etc etc” (something I hadn’t done much of since my daughter was born) and the universe handed me a couple projects right away. One of them within 48 hours in the form of an introduction to a musician I had never worked with . A few FB messages later a new project was born.

Q#3: Where do you find your inspiration? Zoe: Inspiration, huh…..photographs move me a lot. Always have. I surround myself with them. I often realize after the fact that many of the lyrics in any particular song came to me after staring at a photo of someone. More often someone than something. I move so fast that I think IT comes to ME… I don’t ‘find’ it regularly. Kinda stops me in my tracks and says stop what yer doing Zoe Lynne and acknowledge this in lyric somehow.

Q#4: What was the first piece of vinyl you ever purchased? Zoe: First vinyl I ever picked for myself (My dad paid for it at Leapolds on Durant) was the Beatles Oh-Blah-Dee on 45.

Q#5: Anything else you’d like to share? a joke/quote? Zoe: ‘When I stare at certain photographs, they let me see a path, the way back home. And even though I get turned around , and I can’t find the ground, I guess I’m grown’ – Lyrics from my song “Still”



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