Born and raised in Dublin’s Docklands, shaz OYE (pronounced “Oh Yay” - as in the town crier!) has established herself as a unique artist on the Irish stage. shaz OYE’s rich dark voice reaches the lower parts few female vocals reach; her music tracks the modern world. With its roots in blues and jazz and a thumping heartbeat that’s pure rock ‘n’ roll shaz has created an eclectic sound that inspires and resonates with modern audiences. Following a live performance Jackie Hayden wrote in Hotpress “OYE really rattled and hummed, reducing a rapt, packed audience to reverential silence”
shaz learnt at a very early age that she had a powerful voice that could not only command adoring audiences but also guarantee endless supplies of crisps and lemonade not to mention winning holidays for her family in Butlins! Whilst regularly called on to sing at school concerts, Shaz never viewed the gift of her incredible voice as out of the ordinary. Her musical abilities were further enhanced with a spell spent playing trumpet with the Communication Workers (Post Office) Union Band. Although even shaz admits her trumpet playing was no threat to Miles Davis’ legacy
shaz grew up in a world that viewed her as ‘different’ and she became politically aware at an early age. Growing up as a black lesbian in a monocultural, homogeneous world led to a deep commitment to work as an activist campaigning for change. Her street-smart political awareness fundamentally colours the lens through which she interprets her art and channels her creative energy. In the time-honoured tradition of artists like Nina Simone and Bob Dylan, she writes songs with a message, songs that tell a story. Whilst still in her late teens, in response to witnessing a generation of young Dubliners devastated by heroin, she wrote the song, which became the 2005 single release “When Lady Sings the Blues”. It serves as a testimony to her burgeoning song-writing skills.
Her talent has earned her features on RTE’s MONO and Rattlebag. She has played live in studio on RTE Radio 1's Today with Pat Kenny Show and the John Creedon Show as well as a host of top regional radio programmes. She’s opened for artists as diverse as Aslan, Hazel O’Connor, Juliet Turner, and John Spillane; and she’s performed alongside or shared a bill with some of Ireland’s top performers including, Brian Kennedy, Gerry Fish, Maria Doyle Kennedy and Damien Dempsey.
self-financed debut EP 'child of original sin' was released in September
She has plugged into a sophisticated and intelligent Irish audience that’s seeking diversity and her debut album "Truth according to shaz OYE" will cement her growing industry credibility; “tough urban hymns with a history…probably the most intense collection of songs you’ll hear this year,” Eamon Carr, Evening Herald.