Wielding the torch of a veritable Creole dynasty, Marcella René Simien has successfully planted the seeds of her South Louisiana heritage deep into the fertile bluffs of Memphis—no small victory and especially for a woman in the music industry.
Daughter of two-time GRAMMY™ award winning Zydeco luminary Terrance Simien, she was practically born onstage and grew up thoroughly immersed in sound and performance. It was not uncommon for, say, Taj Mahal to sing her happy birthday, Dr. John to be like an uncle to her or for David Hidalgo of Los Lobos, to sit in on family gumbo dinners.
Simien is a natural in the truest sense, and though music in some ways chose her, it is she who ultimately chose music. She's forged her own pathways in the music business. A graduate of the prestigious Memphis College of Art, and a student of fearless women such as Erykah Badu and Nina Simone, Simien boldly follows her heart as she has conquered the role of bandleader.
Her music is a rare hybrid of the sounds of Memphis and Muscle Shoals, steadfastly rooted in the sighs and laughter of her Creole ancestors. In times when we seemingly must feel around in the dark to survive, Simien’s soulful voice functions as an instrument unto itself, a guiding star in the night.
"Though leading woman Marcella Rene Simien originally hails from Lafayette, La., her band with the “Lovers” is Memphis-based, and Simien has lived in Memphis since moving there for art school in 2009. Her powerhouse voice lends itself to the group’s swampy soul sound. Memphis has long been home to soulful blues bands, and Marcella and Her Lovers know how to freshen those classic Memphis sounds for a 2018 audience."
- Paste Magazine
“One of the most interesting artists to emerge on the Memphis scene in years”.
–Chris Herrington, The Memphis Flyer
“[Simien is] one of the most soulful artists I've heard since the glory days of Memphis soul music. Her sound and stage presence are constant reminders that soul music is still alive and well.”
- Boo Mitchell