Thursday Local Live Music: Whitney Monge
There are moments in a performance where an artist gets lost. Where they just let go, allowing themselves to be vulnerable and to feel across the depth and breadth of their being. It is in that state where Whitney Mongé lives and creates.
Singer-songwriter & guitarist, Whitney Mongé learned to capture the power of authenticity while honing her skills as a street performer. With or without elevation of a stage, each part of her performance, from the passion of her powerful, smoky voice to the intensity of a whispered lyric, draws listeners into an embrace within each truthful moment of song. Whitney was raised with rhythm and blues in her blood, and while growing up in the Pacific Northwest, her music is heavily influenced by the alternative rock and indie folk scene coining her own genre, Folk n’ Soul.
With a raspy break at the edges of her rich and sultry voice, she has drawn comparisons to Brittany Howard and Lenny Kravitz. The narratives of which she pulls upon give voice to the marginalized, display the vulnerability and depth within her songwriting, and call to mind artists like Tracy Chapman & Richie Havens.
In 2014, Whitney was a main feature in the award winning film, “Find Your Way: a Busker’s Documentary”, also starring Chris Bellew of The Presidents Of The United States Of America and world renowned violinist, Joshua Bell. This three year chronicle highlighting Mongé’s busking career, explores themes of creativity and success through the lens of street music. The documentary was nominated for ten film awards and screened at CBGB Festival in New York City.
From 2018 to 2022, Mongé was nominated for two terms as a Governor on the Pacific Northwest Recording Academy Chapter Board (GRAMMYs). During this period, she focused her energy on advocating for more local artist representation in the prestigious invite-only academy, helming member outreach events and connecting musicians with their vast network. Whitney is passionate about working with youth, women and people of color through peer support and deliberate collaboration. She has volunteered as a ‘band coach’ for all youth girls music program, Rain City Rock Camp, throughout her years in Seattle and donates a handful of performances to non-profit organizations annually. She offers mentoring for up-and-coming musicians specializing in artist development, branding, songwriting, and has been a guest panelist discussing these very topics from an independent artist perspective.
Whitney has three acclaimed EPs, Steadfast (2014), Stone (2017), Carry On (2018) under her belt, and recently released a live album with Grammy Award winning orchestra, The Seattle Symphony titled “Whitney Mongé Live with The Seattle Symphony” (2021). Each of her records exemplify Whitney’s journey as a heavy hitting, grassroots artist.
After a two year hiatus-post Covid, Whitney is currently recording new music with Austin, TX musician & producer, Anthony Ferrell (Greyhounds) and will be releasing the folk n’ soul tunes in 2023. Performances in support will be announced shortly.