Whisky A Go Go, the Sunset Strip nightclub which has hosted Janis Joplin and Led Zeppelin and launched the careers of many artists and bands such as the Doors, hosted Molly Chapman ’14 on Feb. 3. The concert was Chapman’s second of 2013, and she has since performed two more in the month of March alone.
“When she sings you not only see a beautiful girl singing with an amazing voice, but also someone that really connects with what she is singing,” said Emma Sanderson ’14, Chapman’s friend who has attended two of Chapman’s recent shows. “She’s so good you can’t take your eyes off of her.”
Chapman began singing at 6 years old and began writing her own music at 12. Her first break came last year when a family friend asked her to perform at a show, and from there Chapman performed more and more. In the past year, Chapman has performed multiple times at the M Bar, most recently on Jan. 27, as well as a show at the Mareka Café and her recent Whisky A Go Go show. Additionally, she sang in a show on Jan. 20 called “Cirque Acoustique” while professional Cirque du Soleil performers danced behind her.
“I think performing at so many different venues and for so many different crowds has shown me what kind of gig I like the best,” Chapman said. “I would have to say gigs like the one at the Whisky are probably my favorite because you can tell that people are listening to the music, but they can also feel free to just chill and have a fun time.”
Chapman has already performed two more shows in the month of March — one at the Voodoo Lounge at the House of Blues on March 3 and another at the Catalina Bar and Grill on March 6 with her parents, Karen Benjamin and Alan Chapman.
“I love performing in front of a crowd,” Chapman said. “It’s really interesting to see how people respond to my songs. I’m just always looking to see what I can do to improve my performance.”
In the case of the Voodoo Lounge, the booker called Chapman and told her he liked her sound before asking her to sing at an upcoming show. However, Chapman books the rest of the shows herself, sending copies of her music to bookers across Los Angeles and using social media to get herself heard. Chapman has a Sound Cloud and a Reverb Nation as well as a YouTube channel with over 5,300 views and an additional 1,800 views on other channels.
So far Chapman’s shows have featured mostly her own original music, a collection of 20 songs that she began writing at 12 years old. Chapman continues to work on her music, attending song writing workshops and editing the music often.
Additionally, Chapman is a member of the school’s Chamber Singers and Jazz Singers.
“I would love to pursue it as a career, but it is a really tough career to pursue,” Chapman said. “I have a lot of interests, but I think music is the one passion that I really have and I can’t see myself doing anything else.”