Aleksandra Denton, better known by her stage name Shura, is a British singer, songwriter and producer.
Life and career
Shura grew up in Manchester; her mother is a Russian actress, and her father is an English documentary filmmaker. She has two brothers, one of whom is her twin. She began playing the guitar when she was 13 years old and started recording music at 16. During university, she formed a band with guitarist Patrick Duncombe and collaborated with producer Hiatus (Cyrus Shahrad), who remixed Shura's 2011 debut single "River". Shura features on six tracks on Hiatus's 2013 album Parklands, including "River" and the singles "Fortune's Fool", "Iran Air" and "We Can Be Ghosts Now". Shura took a gap year after her university studies and developed her songwriting skills while working in the Amazon rainforest.
Following her work with Hiatus, Shura decided to assume creative control over the production of her music. During night shifts at her workplace (a video editing facility), she watched YouTube tutorial videos on how to use music production software. Her single "Touch", co-produced with Joel Pott of Athlete, drew positive notice from internet blogs during early 2014; its music video was directed and edited by Shura herself. Two other singles, "Just Once" and "Indecision", followed the same year, and Shura produced a remix of Jessie Ware's single "Say You Love Me". Shura was longlisted in the BBC Sound of 2015 poll, and her debut album is due for release in 2015 via Polydor Records. Shura is also signed to Universal Music Publishing Group in the United Kingdom. She released the single "2Shy" in March 2015, followed by "White Light" and a performance film titled Three Years in June 2015. An EP titled White Light was released in the United States in July. The same year, Shura performed at music festivals including Bestival, Festival N°6, and Latitude.
Shura's musical influences include Blood Orange, Mariah Carey, Phil Collins, J Dilla, Drake, Peter Gabriel, Haim, Whitney Houston, Janet Jackson, Elton John, Madonna, Massive Attack, Pink Floyd, Pixies, Portishead, Prince, Diana Ross, Ed Rush, Patrice Rushen, Raphael Saadiq, KT Tunstall, and Tina Turner.