Some of you may recall my Sasquatch Countdown from last year. I had fun with it and thought I’d keep the tradition alive and give it another go this year! Every day I’ll post an artist I’m excited to see at this year’s festival, coming up May 24-27th! Enjoy!
When I first saw her name, I didn’t think I’d like ZZ Ward. I thought it was the moniker for some electro/techno, wannabe Daft Punk band. But, as a rule for myself, I give each Sasquatch-performing artist a fair listen before I pass judgement. So when I listened to ZZ and discovered she’s a woman with a fierce voice, I was happily surprised. The more I listened, the more I liked her.
An Oregon native, Zsuzsanna Eva Ward joined her first band at age 12 and began singing with multiple underground hip-hop artists around Eugene, Ore. Despite being surrounded by rap music, she clung to her blues and soul-loving background as she developed her own style. Honey-coated vocals and a clever hip-hop/blues mixed backing, it didn’t take long to perk the ears of some big music producers.
The dominos of her career starting toppling into motion once she moved to Los Angeles and signed with E. Kidd Bogart’s Boardwalk Entertainment Group. Collaborating with artists like Theron “Neff-U” Feemster and Fitz and the Tantrums, Ward produced and released her first EP, Criminal, in early 2012. Her full length album, Til the Casket Drops, wasn’t too far behind, dropping in October of last year.
Even before her debut album, Ward has been a buzzed-about artist all across the nation, already completing a major 50 date American tour and performing at SXSW… two years in a row. Her music has been featured in Pretty Little Liars, Awkward, and Nashville and she’s performed on both Conan and Jay Leno. This fedora-donning diva is bound to make an even stronger presence on your music radar before this year is out.
[ZZ Ward performs on the Sasquatch stage at 4:00 pm on Friday, May 24.]