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Heard on CultureShift

Meet the Detroit Songwriters That Just Won Their First Grammy

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Image credit: Piper Carter

Sisters Antea and Anesha Birchett grew up singing in their Detroit church. Earlier this month, they won their first Grammy for writing a song that appeared on the best R&B album of the year.

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Anesha (left) and Antea Birchett (right) are a sister-duo of Detroit songwriters who have written songs for Beyonce, Jennifer Lopez, Justin Bieber and many more.Piper Carter
Piper Carter

Anesha (left) and Antea Birchett (right) are a sister-duo of Detroit songwriters who have written songs for Beyonce, Jennifer Lopez, Justin Bieber and many more.

Click the audio player above to listen. CultureShift airs weekdays 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. on WDET 101.9FM Detroit public radio.

A sister-duo of songwriters have written songs for Beyoncé, Justin Bieber and other big stars without ever leaving Detroit.

Antea Birchett and her sister Anesha are known as the songwriting duo APLUS.

Their journey as songwriters landed them a Grammy this year for their work on the R&B album of the year — the self-titled debut of the 21-year-old California singer H.E.R.

In an interview on CultureShift, Antea Birchett takes listeners inside that big moment at the Grammys.

I was so shocked,” says Birchett, who is the head of songwriting for the Detroit Institute of Music Education (DIME). “When you’re in the music industry, you learn to manage your expectations. I was really grateful for the nomination … to be able to be in L.A. and enjoy all the celebration. To actually win it was mind-blowing.”

Being raised in a musical family, Birchett says it was her experience harmonizing at home and at church that set her on the path she’s on today.

We really did the majority of our singing in church — the classic story of being in Detroit and having a solid foundation in the gospel community that’s here,” says Birchett.

After a trio of nominations, Birchett says the Grammy win this year for her work on the H.E.R. album helps recognize the contributions of Detroiters like herself on the national music scene.

It’s recognition of what it is that we do here,” says Birchett. “It feels good to represent my city on this level.”

Listen to the song that Detroit songwriters Antea and Anesha Birchett wrote on the Grammy-award winning album from California singer H.E.R. below:


Ryan Patrick Hooper, Host, CultureShift

Ryan Patrick Hooper is a host of CultureShift and longtime arts, culture and music reporter.

hooper@wdet.org Follow @hoopingtonpost

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