Music: My Brightest Diamond

My Brightest Diamond is the moniker of experimental pop musician Shara Worden.

Shara was raised outside Detroit by a family of musicians (mom was an organist, and dad played accordion) and she studied multiple instruments while growing up. She pursued an Opera degree at University of North Texas, and later studied composition under Padma Newsome (of Clogs and The National). Shara first began attracting attention when she performed in Sufjan Stevens’ backing band, and was an opening act for Sufjan’s Illinoisemaker tour. Her debut album was released not long afterwards.

    Discography 
My Brightest Diamond
  • Bring Me the Workhorse (2006)
    • Disappear single (2006)
  • Tear It Down (2007) 13 different electronic artists remixing tracks from Workhorse.
    • Misfits, Orphans, and Hooligans (2008) A collection of b-sides.
    • Inside a Boy single (2008)
  • A Thousand Shark’s Teeth (2008)
    • Shark Demos EP (2008)
    • From the Top of the World single (2008)
  • Shark Remixes (individual volumes released digitally 2009; CD box set released 2010)
    • Vol. 1 – Alfred Brown
    • Vol. 2 – Son Lux
    • Vol. 3 – Roberto Lange
    • Vol. 4 – DM Stith
  • All Things Will Unwind (2011)
    • Be Brave single (2011)
  • This Is My Hand (2014)
    • Pressure single (2014)

Other
  • Sarah Kirkland Snider: Penelope (2010). Shara Worden and Signal perform the music.
  • Clogs: The Creatures in the Garden of Lady Walton (2010). Shara sings on six tracks.
  • Letters to Distant Cities (2011). Shara Worden and Clare Mulduar Manchon read poems by Mustafa Ziyalan.

For individual song collaborations, see the list on Shara’s website.


Provides examples of:

  • Album Title Drop: "Everything Is in Line" does this for All Things Will Unwind.
    • "Pressure" serves as a title drop for the artist, rather than the album:
    I forgot the sound of diamonds
    So bright I cannot hide them.
  • Animated Music Video: “Inside a Boy”.
  • Breakup Song: “Gone Away” is the “pining for a lost love” variety of breakup song.
  • Burning the Ships: Referenced in the song "Escape Routes" as a metaphor for choosing love over apathy.
    Let's close off all our escape routes
    Let's not put it off tonight
    Let's close off all our escape routes
    We can have it all tonight
  • Chiaroscuro: The cover art for Bring Me the Workhorse.
  • Covers Always Lie: The cover of A Thousand Shark’s Teeth is a picture of Shara playing an accordion. Neither Shara nor anyone else plays any accordion on that album.
  • List Song: "This Is My Hand" lists an awful lot of body parts and personality traits.
  • Melismatic Vocals: Used often.
  • Missing Episode: The biography on her website says that Shara recorded three albums before ever meeting Sufjan Stevens, and that she composed music for off-Broadway productions. Nothing else is known about these scores or recordings.
  • New Sound Album: This Is My Hand is dominated by percussion and electronic effects in places, in comparison to the mostly tranquil baroque pop of All Things Will Unwind. The classical instrumentation still plays a huge role, though.
  • Opposites Attract: The point of “We Added It Up”.
    What a pair of disagreeable agreeables
  • Precision F-Strike: “High Low Middle” has Shara’s only (so far at least) recorded profanity.
    Wasting for a buck
    and then you're shit and out of luck.
  • Protest Song: “There’s a Rat”.
  • Rearrange the Song: The two remix collections.
  • Uncommon Time: "In the Beginning", "Lover Killer", and "Shape" are excellent examples.
    • "Resonance" takes the trope to extremes; at the beginning of the song, the drums, vocals, and keyboards all appear to be playing in different time signatures. Only in the chorus do they all stick to the same (still uncommon) time signature.