NAME: Kierra Valencia Sheard
DATE OF BIRTH: June 20, 1987
ORIGIN: Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
GENRES: Urban gospel, R&B
YEARS ACTIVE: 1997 – present
OCCUPATION: Singer, songwriter, actress, fashion designer, CEO of Eleven60
LABELS: EMI Gospel, Karew Records
WEBSITE: www.iamkierrasheard .com
Kierra Sheard is an American gospel singer, fashion designer, and radio host. She is the daughter of gospel singer Karen Clark Sheard (member of gospel singing group, The Clark Sisters) and the granddaughter of gospel choral director, Mattie Moss Clark. After appearing on her mother’s albums, Sheard broke to the music scene with the release of her debut album, I Owe You in 2004. Her hit single “You Don’t Know” was written about her mother’s bout with an almost fatal blood clot.
1997–2003: Early career
Sheard made her professional stage debut at the age of 10, performing on two tracks on her mother’s debut solo album, Finally Karen in 1997. Sheard started singing as a background vocalist for her mother, her aunt Dorinda Clark-Cole, and the Clark Sisters. In 2002, she was featured on her aunt Dorinda’s self-titled debut album. The next year, she performed two tracks again on her mother’s third album, The Heavens Are Telling. On The Heavens Are Telling, she was featured with her mother on a popular cover of Jill Scott‘s “He Loves Me (Lyzel In E Flat)”. In 2003, EMI Gospel won a bidding war among several record companies to sign Sheard to her ﬁrst recording contract.
2004–2005: I Owe You
Her debut album, I Owe You, was released on September 7, 2004. The album also functioned as the production debut for her brother J Drew.
EMI commissioned a collection of remixes titled, Just Until… on August 2, 2005. The title of the stopgap release was abbreviated from its working title, “Just Until The Next Record”. The album had a surprise international hit in the Godson Concept remix of “Let Go”.
2006–2007: This is Me
Shortly after graduating high school, Sheard readied her second album, This Is
Me. It debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Top Gospel Albums chart when it was released on June 27, 2006. A midtempo fan favorite, the Fred Jerkins III-produced “Why Me?” was chosen as the lead single for the album. Sheard shot her ﬁrst music videos for two subsequent singles from the album, “Yes” and “This Is Me”. The album was Grammy Award-nominated for Best Contemporary R&B Gospel Album in December 2006.
2008–2009: Bold Right Life
In October 2008, Sheard released her third album, Bold Right Life. The album’s two lead singles were “Praise Him Now” and “Won’t Hold Back”. Sheard was also featured on what would be the biggest single of her career to date, “God In Me”, from Mary Mary‘s The Sound album.
Sheard released a greatest hits EP titled KiKi’s Mixtape on September 22, 2009. This included three new unreleased songs, two remixes, singles from previous albums and “This Christmas” with Marcus Cole.
2010–2013: Free and The Sheards
Sheard had a role in the ﬁlm Preacher’s Kid (starring platinum-selling R&B artist, LeToya Luckett, Durrell Babbs, Clifton Powell, Gregory Alan Williams, and Sharif Atkins), which was released in theaters across the U.S. on January 29, 2010 and was released on DVD and Blu-ray disc on May 4, 2010.
Sheard‘s fourth album, Free, was released on October 18, 2011. This was her ﬁrst album on her family’s gospel label, Karew Records. Originally scheduled for a July 2011 release, the album was leaked and subsequently pushed back and reformatted with a different track listing. The album features Sheard‘s BRL (Bold Right Life) Choir.
On April 7, 2013, Sheard and her family debuted in a new BET reality series, The Sheards. The show is based on the lives of Sheard, her brother and producer J. Drew, and her parents, Grammy Award-winning Karen Clark Sheard and Pastor J. Drew Sheard Sr. Season 1 had a run of eight episodes, and it was announced on the BET Twitter account that Season 2 would debut in the fall of 2014.
Sheard released the single “Trumpets Blow” in 2013, and “2nd Win” was a song played on SoundCloud in 2014. Her ﬁfth album, Graceland, was released on July 22, 2014. This album hit #1 overall on iTunes and was nominated for multiple awards at the 2015 Stellar Awards.
2004: I Owe You
2006: This Is Me
2008: Bold Right Life
2005: Just Until…
2009: KiKi’s Mixtape
2011: My Kierra Sheard Playlist