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Who is Avery*Sunshine?

By

Who is Avery*Sunshine?

© BigShine Music.

Born & Raised:

Real name: Denise White.
Born and raised in the Chester, Pennsylvania area.
Currently lives in Atlanta, Georgia.

Early Life:

The woman known as Avery*Sunshine is a native of Pennsylvania, where she grew up singing and playing piano in church and leading and directing choirs, particularly the regionally renowned Wilmington/Chester Mass Choir. After graduating from high school, she moved to Atlanta, Georgia to attend Spellman College.

Early Career:

Avery eventually formed a singing duo called DaiseyRew with a Spellman clasmate, Maia Wilson, who would later go on to become a singer in Broadway shows. After the duo went their separate ways, Avery found work in the music industry, but mostly behind the scenes. She contributed background vocals to the soundtrack to the 2003 film "The Fighting Temptations," and in 2005, she was hired as lead keyboardist for Tyler Perry’s stage play "Meet the Browns." In 2007 she became choral director for the theatrical production of "Dreamgirls" during the National Black Arts Festival in Atlanta.

Solo Career:

In 2008, she performed daily at the Democratic National Convention in Denver, Colorado. Then in 2009, she gave shows at four private events celebrating the 2009 Inauguration of President Barack Obama. In July 2010, Avery played the role of Grandma in the Atlanta opening of "I Dream," a musical based on the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. directed by actress-singer Jasmine Guy. Also in 2010, she self-released her first full album in the U.S., featuring the single "All in My Head." Another release, featuring the single "Bags Packed," followed in August 2011.

Notable Quote:

"I needed to come up with a name at the last minute. My real name is Denise White. I was in Atlanta, outside of my studio, before a trip to Japan. My [music] partner, Dana said, ‘What do you want to be billed as?” I just said, “Avery Sunshine.” Avery comes from [The Color Purple’s] Shug Avery, and Sunshine comes from [Lela Rochon’s sexy prostitute character in] Harlem Nights." -- Avery*Sunshine, to Creative Loafing Atlanta, April 2011.

Discography:

2011: Avery*Sunshine Summer EP
2010: Avery*Sunshine
2010: Avery*Sunshine EP

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