Genre-defying artist Gina Sicilia at Adriatic Oct. 17

Staff Report

The 25-year-old genre-defying Gina Sicilia will take the stage at Rockford’s Adriatic Café and Live Music Bar at 7 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 17.

Sicilia’s evening performance at the Adriatic is in conjunction with a Blues In the Schools performance to be held earlier in the day.

The young Philadelphia songstress exploded onto the scene in 2007 as her debut CD, Allow Me to Confess, was met with acclaim by fans and critics alike.

Sicilia was heralded as a distinctive new voice in the blues, as well as an insightful songwriter and interpreter of neglected classics in the Rhythm & Blues canon.

Exposed to music at an early age by her parents, Sicilia showed a passion for music. She began writing her own songs at age 12, and had written numerous songs by age 16 that would later be recorded on her debut album.

Sicilia graduated from Temple University in 2007 with a degree in journalism. During her sophomore year of college, she began attending a weekly blues jam, Warmdaddy’s, in Philadelphia, where she got her first performing experience and met a group of local musicians who would help her record her first demo.

In 2008, Sicilia was nominated for “Best New Artist Debut” at the Blues Music Awards in Memphis, Tenn., just as her sophomore release, Hey Sugar, proved her also to be a legitimate contender in the worlds of classic country and Americana.

With her new 2011 release, Can’t Control Myself, Sicilia broadens her stylistic palette, infusing even more soul and Americana into her bedrock influences of blues and R&B. The CD features seven new compositions, as well as three choice covers borrowed from Bobby Bland, Stevie Wonder and Ike & Tina Turner.

The Adriatic is at 327 W. Jefferson St., Rockford. Admission is $5 for adults and free for students. Call (779) 537-4006 for more about the show.

From the Oct. 10-16, 2012, issue

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