Meet Heather-Buckley Wilson, the Frontwoman Behind Quirky Pop Group, B.E.L.L.A.
In this biweekly column, RFT Music gets to know local creatives, musicians and their missions. Get a slice of the local scene, complete with a snippet of sound and info about upcoming releases and shows. Stick around to see what St. Louis artists have to say whenever they Fill in in the Blank.
Ricky Sherman Heather and Derrick of B.E.L.L.A.
Songbird Heather-Buckley Wilson, a St. Louis native that grew up in semi-segregated environs, says she always felt like the odd man out in her neighborhood. Instead of following the pack mentality to fit in with other kids, she clung to her mother's music collection, finding inspiration in artists like Paul Simon, Tracy Chapman, and Queen. Tapes of Alanis Morissette and the Cranberries kept her company on the school bus, shaping her into the quirky pop musician she is today, as the leading woman behind B.E.L.L.A., which will self-release its debut album, Juxtapose, this summer.
Buckley-Wilson's husband says her taste in music is "way '80s." As a young girl, a member of one of her favorite current duos, Hall & Oates, even serenaded her in an airport. "Pop is Not Dead in St. Louis" presides as her press tagline, and she intends to deliver it at events all over town, including local festivals and her favorite show spot, Lemmons.
With close friend and multi-instrumentalist Derrick Richard, Buckley-Wilson composes everything from touching ballads belted out from deep within her soulful set of lungs (see the video below) to ass-shaking, metallic techno-pop jams meant to induce undulating on the dance floor. Special guest performers join in on drums, guitars, keyboards -- whatever's fair game -- for B.E.L.L.A.'s live performances. When she's not delivering raw, electrifying sets in B.E.L.L.A., channeling favorite artists including Stevie Nicks and Pink, Buckley-Wilson also composes the occasional commercial jingle as well as music for an indie label in Seattle.
We invited Heather Buckley-Wilson of B.E.L.L.A. to fill in the blanks ahead of two performances this weekend. See what she had to say on the next page!