Allison V. Taylor (born March 11, Pisces) known musically as Berri, is an extraordinarily talented international (Jamaican-born) budding recording artist. Her rich, textured, soulful voice is reminiscent of the early greats such as Etta James or contemporary greats such as Whitney Houston.
The fifth of six children, Berri knew from a young age she was “Gonna Fly”. At age 4 Berri’s vocal talent was discovered at church while singing hymns. However, it was at age 16 that Allison Taylor became Berri when the boys in her neighbour nicknamed her “Berri” because her short hairstyle made her look like the famous actress Halle Berry. Though she loved to sing, Berri had to put her passion on hold to help her family which led to an application to the Jamaica Defense Force and a course in culinary arts.
But it was difficult for Berri not to sing. Inspired by the great late Whitney Houston and Aretha Franklin, Berri seek every opportunity to sing which saw her singing at church, store openings, weddings and wakes. It was at a wake that Berri was discovered by Derrol Frazer, CEO of ‘Out a Road Records’.
Under the guidance of Frazer, Berri attended classes at Edna Manley College of Visual and Performing Arts.
Berri’ scored her first professional performance at the 2013 staging of Jamaica’s Fashion block during Style week. It was no slowing down for Berri, as she subsequently landed her first major stage show performance at Jamaica’s largest reggae festival, Reggae Sumfest where she performed on International Night 2 with the likes of R&B singer Miguel and reggae crooner Beres Hammond among others.
She was later flown to Canada to perfect her craft. There she attended vocal camp for several months with the legendary vocal coach Elaine Overholt of ‘Big Voice Studios’ who has worked with the titans of pop music; Ray Charles, Tina Turner, Dionne Warwick, as well as Hollywood celebrities like John Travolta, Richard Gere, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Queen Latifah.This exposure, led Berri to work with top international music producers Gavin “Golden” Brown the multi-platinum, multi-Juno Award-winning Canadian record producer, and songwriter, and musician Adrian Gough of Dream Machine who have worked with the likes of Three Days Grace, Billy Talent, Metric, New Kids on The Block, and Lady Gaga.
A BERRI BRIGHT FUTURE
From all indications, the horizon is bright for Berri. She blazed into the consciousness of Jamaicans with I Can’t Let Go, Fly and her rendition of Tamia’s Give Me You.
Berri’s distinct musical sound is bound to standout in the adult contemporary, R&B, dance, gospel, pop genres and reggae.
The St. Catherine born songstress who anticipates a limitless future in music is currently taking piano lessons. Berri who recently performed at the St. Ann Kite Festival to rave reviews, is now prepared for a series of exclusive listening parties. These will involve intimate settings for her to meet her demographic of music lovers. She will also do a series of tours among various music loving sectors that will strategically build her a loyal and sustainable fan base over time.
“My ultimate dream is to walk the red carpet at the Grammys…
as a performer and a Grammy winner.” – Berri
Berry Ready For Breakout At Sumfest
Published: Monday | July 15, 2013
Leighton Levy, Gleaner Writer
It was only a few months ago, May to be exact, that Allison Taylor made her musical debut in Kingston at Fashionblock, described as the biggest live fashion show in the Caribbean. Before a large audience gathered, Taylor, whose stage name is Berry, performed impressive renditions of Bob Marley’s Redemption Song; Whitney Houston’s All the Man I Need, Christina Aguilera’s Beautiful and Chaka Khan’s Ain’t Nobody.