Deja Solis is a singer, songwriter, dancer, humanitarian, farmer, and family woman who has become known around the globe as the model for the world renowned Bliss Dance sculpture series, showcased at Burning Man Festival, Treasure Island, and now the MGM Grand Casino in Las Vegas. Over the past ten years, her journey as a singer is what initially provided a foundation for sharing her voice with the world, having collaborated with musicians, projects, and producers emerging out of the underground West Coast festival scene that brought EDM and alternative bass culture to the forefront of mainstream music. “Bliss Dance”, currently being installed at MGM Grand’s new sculpture park, stands 40 feet tall, and like this bigger than life size depiction of Deja, the soulful voice that soars through enraptured audiences through music, is driven with a larger than life passion and purpose: to redefine the meaning of feminism and what it means to be a "Woman” in the modern world.
Deja’s musical career began as a nomadic journey studying music, dance, and traditions around the globe, bringing a well-rounded depth to her natural-born Soul singing style. From traditional ragas in India, to indigenous music of Central and South America, to Gnawa music of Morocco, to the rich musical heritage of Mali, West Africa, she was relentless in the pursuit of expanding her musical and cultural foundation. At home, Deja continued building her repertoire, studying with mentors versed in Afro-Cuban rhythms and songs, the disciplined techniques and scales of Qawwali chanting, as well as the complexity of Jazz standards. Inevitably, she was destined to rise as a touring/recording artist, performing and collaborating with many musicians and projects.
Her introduction to the big stage began when she joined the groundbreaking group Hamsa Lila in 2004, voted Bay Area’s Best World Music Group of that year, with their infectious grooves of “live-world-fusion-trance”. Deja's voice brought new heights to the sound and notoriety that gained a dedicated following throughout North America and the West Coast festival circuit. In her 7 years with Hamsa Lila, she shared the stage with many well-respected musicians, i.e.: Airto Moreira, Tinariwen, Femi Kuti, Bassnectar, Ernest Ranglin, Tabla Beat Science, Yossi Fine, Charlie Tuna, Arrested Development, String Cheese Incident, Michael Franti, and Barbarito Torres of the Buena Vista Social Club, to name a few.
With the maturity of honing in on her recording and performing skills as a touring singer, Deja began collaborating with other various music projects within the world, reggae, hip hop, and EDM genres. Her current projects include: Teaming up with media production house System Krush, Deja has been working extensively with producer Aja Salvatore over the past 15 years, as they are finally getting ready to release a string of collaborations; ranging from the sounds of classic Soul and Jazz, to downtempo and EDM; bringing catchy, melodic hooks as the female ingredient to the hip hop trio known as Ultimate Fantastic; and being the front vocalist for Radio Devi with members of Hamsa Lila - Ian “Inkx” Herman (Sting, Hugh Masakela, Paul Simon), Vir McCoy (Dogon Lights), and Evan Fraser (Dirtwire, Dogon Lights).
The Bliss Dance Sculpture Series:
Aside from music, the piece that really opened Deja’s heart and eyes to a deeper purpose in the world came from randomly meeting sculptor Marco Cochrane in a Trader Joe’s in 2006. Seeing something in her, he invited her to be 1 of 5 models that would pose for his next sculpting series. They became good friends and continued working together over the next 10 years to create Bliss Dance - a trilogy of large-scale steel nude women sculptures depicting various poses of their model, Deja. Showcasing the pieces one at a time over the course of 5 years, Bliss Dance (2010), Truth is Beauty (2013), and R Evolution (2015) would grace the grounds of Burning Man - a 70,000 person festival that turns a massive desert playa into it’s own temporary city of art and music installations, aka Black Rock City. With such large attendance, the Bliss Dance statues stood out as some of the most breathtaking, photographed, trending hash tagged, and admired installations of the playa. Standing 40 - 57 feet tall, Deja’s body, poised in grace and beauty, became immediately known around the world. But when shape takes form in such a massive way, Deja came to know the power of sharing her voice through a whole new medium, as the Bliss Dance Trilogy represented a powerful statement about female strength, self-confidence and expression. And Deja, as the living model of the statues, represents a living example of the statement itself. Inspired by the importance of redefining the meaning of feminism in the modern world, as well as addressing the issues for women in the modern world, she is currently planning to write a book on these topics based on her personal life journey.
“What I see missing in the world is an appreciation and respect for feminine energy and power that results when women are free and safe. It seems obvious to me that feminine energy is being suppressed and that this must change. If we are to find real, lasting solutions to the problems facing humanity, men and women must be able to work together as equals. Bliss Dance is intended to focus attention on this issue.” ~ Marco Cochrane, Sculptor of the Bliss Dance Trilogy
Home is where the heart is. Raising two boys, 4 dogs, 3 cats, pigs, chickens, goats, a large veggie garden, and an orchard, Deja’s daily life is dedicated to tending to her family and organic farm. She prides living a lifestyle off the grid, using solar power and well water to sustain a natural way of life. Her vision for the property is to create a Farm-to-Table outlet that brings people and music together on the land with organic farm-raised foods. ~
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