Distinguished by Maverick Magazine as a "A Lady of Conviction" singer-songwriter, Phyllis Sinclair taps on the conscience of the established ethos to flag distinctions and inequities under a brilliant banner of song. With seraphic vocals she charmingly disarms, soliciting a self-imposed metamorphosis to transform old ways of thinking into new possibilities. A deceivingly quiet and amiable diplomatist, Sinclair's passion and advocacy are evident in her nurtured prose. She says of her writing, "It's not in me to crank something out quickly for a song. I want to cultivate my work to be meaningful to myself and to those who listen." Sinclair says she definitely relates to the late Leonard Cohen who said that he scratched away at his work, preferring to be in the tribe of swift writers, but finding himself in the tribe of the slow. "I get where he's going with that. I was given the Cree name, Songkeeper Woman by my territory elder. It's a name that comes with a a level of responsibility that I take to heart." Born on the western shore of Hudson's Bay in Churchill, Manitoba, Sinclair is a member of the York Factory First Nation. (Kischiwaskahegan Negani Innewiseewin) She attributes her vocal style to her grandmother who calmed the children to sleep at night with her traditional high pitched, scooping hum.
A singer-songwriter for over two decades, Sinclair proves that "using what you've got" works. She has earned awards, and accolades for her deep and affective construction of songs, carrying listeners to places she's been, and wants to go. Canada's premium Folk, Roots and World Beat magazine, Penguin Eggs described her song North Coast Fisher Wife's Prayer, from her debut album Fence Posts and Stones as "positively impressive". Her second release, Fathomless Tales from Leviathan's Hole, earned her a Canadian Aboriginal Music Award nomination for Best Folk Acoustic Album. From this album her song, The Manicure , was selected by Musicians with a Cause to be included in their "More Life in the Years" CD compilation. Her song was selected out of over 350,000 entries world wide. Dreams of the Washerwomen was selected by Radio Canada International's Brazilian sector as a best new recording by a Canadian artist. It also earned her a Best Folk Acoustic Album Award by the CAMA Awards. Phyllis was nominated as Female Entertainer of the Year by the Aboriginal Peoples Choice Music Awards for her extensive tours.