July 31, 2012


Get to Know Starshell, the Kanye West Songwriter Gone Solo

We recently introduced you to Starshell, the 24-year-old Massachusetts native who helped pen one of Kanye West's biggest hits ("Love Lockdown"). But now it's time to get to know the singer-songwriter in her own right. Born LaNeah Menzies, the budding artist took her sister's name when she passed away. "I took on [the name Starshell] as a tribute to her. The name actually means 'a beacon of light.'"

Starshell's late sister's influence can also be found in her debut album, Liberation: "[The album] is dedicated to my sister, and it's a tribute to her...It's basically saying, 'We've been through so much, we have so much to come, but we're free.' And this music represents freedom." But it's not all heavy. Starshell's single, "Birthday Girl," was inspired by—wait for it—her birthday! She wanted to write a song that encapsulates the feeling of how special we feel when it's our birthday, but bring that feeling to everyday life. I can get down with that. Free dinners for life!