Raspy-voiced singer-songwriter Tess Dunn has accomplished more in 22 years than many performers with decades behind them. A seven-year veteran of West Coast Vans Warped Tour dates who was named one of the top Bay Area performers by a leading S.F. radio station, Tess has recently released her fourth album of original music, while reigning over stages from San Diego to Seattle. Reviewers and fans have described Tess as fearless, a songwriting phemon, feisty, witty, a smartass, and creative wunderkind.
Tess’ most recent EP, Polarity, recorded under the name T3TRA, marks a genre shift that incorporates a more electronic sound. Recorded with Noah Shain - with whom she shares writing credits - at White Buffalo Studio in Los Angeles, Polarity was released October 1, 2016. With driving beats, hints of retro synth and T3TRA's/Tess' raspy vocals, Polarity provides a powerful dose of danceable angst.
Tess' third EP, Daydreamers, was recorded at the legendary Jackpot! Studio in Portland, Oregon, with award-winning singer-songwriter Ari Shine and engineer Sean Flora (The Shins, The Black Keys) and in its first review was praised as a “compilation of some of the best sounds and hooks to show up from the "underground" side of the pop-rock genre in quite a while.”
Her previous EP, Honesty Box, released in 2012, was produced by Ari Shine and Noah Shain (Skrillex, Dead Sara, Secret Handshake). Jenna Brogan of the Good Times wrote, "Honesty Box kicks up the tempo, production value, and girl power.” Eric Berg of KUSP FM noted that the album has “a great caffeinated garage sound not too dissimilar to the punk bands of 30 years ago.”
"Shame To See," the first single from the EP, was recorded at the iconic EastWest Recording Studios in Hollywood. The accompanying music video won a San Francisco Bay Area contest for Best Local Music Video, and Tess was named one of the top eleven S.F. Bay Area artists of 2011 by 99.7 FM NOW Music.
Her 2009 EP, Darling Just Walk, was recorded in North Hollywood with a host of internationally-recorded musicians, including Carina Round, Adrienne Pierce, Ari Shine and Adam Topol (Jack Johnson’s long-time drummer). A reviewer wrote that Tess’ lyrics, “…delve into deeper and darker spaces than the pop stars of her time.”
Dubbed as “the young and the fearless” due to her fierce battle with cystic fibrosis and epilepsy, Tess says it’s “…almost like having a clock ticking over your head, but it has a way of putting things in perspective." Tess inspires others by her refusal to bend to life’s unfair hand.
Tess has performed throughout California, including at West Coast Vans Warped Tour shows from 2009 to 2015. In addition to her sold-out solo shows in Santa Cruz County, she has opened for artists including Karla Bonoff, James Durbin, Nina Storey, Ari Shine, Adrienne Pierce, Sophie B. Hawkins, and Dresses. Her music has been scored in an indie feature film, and she has participated in three national film and music productions, including Vans Off The Wall TV’s "Pass The Bucket" series, which features inspirational athletes, artists and performers. An Endorsed Artist with On Stage Stands and Lanikai, Tess takes girl power to a whole new level.