While some artists view their careers with a sort of “If you build it, they will come” mentality, pop singer-songwriter Shelita Burke definitely doesn’t. As a data scientist and cryptologist, she has a very deliberate, almost scientific approach to reaching fans. And she likens releasing and promoting her music to running a small business.
When she was younger, Burke said she saw the opportunity that the Internet could eventually provide to independent artists. “At an early age I knew, I need to learn how this world works and how to build things,” she says. She started programming when she was eight, and after graduating from the Northwest College of Art & Design, she went on to become a senior data engineer at Microsoft while playing shows at night. She left a couple years ago to pursue music full time.