Expression through song: Desilu finds creative spark in live performance | Community

Normandy musician Desiree Abba has a barely perceptible, albeit lasting, reminder that Dolly Parton’s groove once brought her to a hospital emergency room.

It’s the singer-songwriter’s earliest musical recollection that now includes numerous gigs on Oklahoma’s central music scene.

“I was two or three years old and I was dancing to a Dolly Parton video on TV,” said Abba, aka Desilu. “I loved her then and I still love her. How can you not love Dolly?

“While dancing in the living room I ended up tripping over something and hitting my head on the entertainment center. I had to go to the hospital, get stitches and now have a little permanent bump on my forehead because of it.Even though the music wasn’t kind to me at first, I still really like it.

This affection was returned to Desilu by fans of the Norman music scene and other collaborating musicians who embraced her warmly. The Spokane, Washington native came here eight years ago.

She plays guitar, writes songs and founded the recording duo The Shambliers (“Unbridled Sounds of the Future, Unwitting Tasteful Treats of the Past”) with Harold Bear. She also regularly performs solo in regional venues.

Desilu describes music as the best expressive outlet for her.

“I don’t feel like I’m very good at communicating, so writing music and creating art is a way for me to do that without feeling so uncomfortable,” he said. she declared. “I feel more comfortable expressing myself through music than speaking or interacting with people on a daily basis.”

Desilu alternates between jazz and folk styles during his solo acoustic guitar performances. She shares a regular bill on the first Wednesday of the month with singer-songwriter Celia Monroe at the Blue Bonnet Bar.

Desilu is a self-taught singer and guitarist who briefly took piano lessons. She now uses the keys mainly when composing new songs.

“I started playing the guitar in high school and was lucky when someone gave me one,” she said. “I started learning all the songs I was listening to at the time.”

Desilu began performing in public the same way Joni Mitchell did: singing and playing guitar at open-mic nights.

“I didn’t really have the confidence yet to just branch out and play,” she said. “Celia Monroe is the one who invited me to play with her. I loved the experience of that. I had been to the Blue Bonnet Bar many times and it was a comfortable space to play. It gave me the confidence to play in other places as well. I’ve met so many great musicians that way. I’ve learned so much from them.

Desilu honed his skills playing at the Resonator Institute, Oscillator Press, Beer is Good Brewing Company, Deli, Vices Bar in El Reno and George’s Stables in Stillwater. She plays her original compositions during these concerts.

“I tend to start writing a new song after reading something I really like,” Desilu said. “A song called ‘Helena’ is about a character from Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream.’ It’s about her but also about how it relates to me.I’m going to take a character, a poem or a life circumstance that I can relate to and write about it that way.

“My listeners have been very encouraging. Other guitarists complimented “Honeybee”, which is one of my most jazzy songs that I will be recording soon. Being told that I use unique chords is something I really appreciate.

Desilu learned to relax and enjoy the moments of his live shows.

“If I forget a lyric, I can make a joke about it, and people don’t care as long as you recover well,” she said. “What I was afraid of at first was a lot more fun for me than I expected.”

Collaborating with other musicians has been a beneficial learning experience for Desilu. She recorded some of her singles for an EP with Harold Bear in her studio.

“There are so many great musicians to work with here at Norman,” she said. “I enjoyed Norman Music Festival and look forward to its return. The music scene here is so diverse.

Desilu will next perform live with Celia Monroe at 9 p.m. on March 2 at the Blue Bonnet Bar, 321 E. Main St.

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