Ferera Swan is a recording artist, songwriter, composer, pianist, violinist, and GRAMMY voting member of The Recording Academy.
“These songs are a universal call for collective healing. Within them, I’m telling my story and speaking my truth,” shares cinematic-pop artist Ferera Swan. Today, the Austin, Texas-based artist is boldly emerging from a transformative time of reclamation with a series of elegantly-produced singles brimming with hard truths, poetic lyricism, brave emotionality, and healing vibes.
Ferera is an adult child of closed adoption and an outspoken advocate for others, shining a light on the shadowy issues surrounding the industry involving family separation, grief, shame, secrecy, and trauma. In recent years, Ferera has changed her name to reflect a combination of her biological parents' last names. This empowering decision opened new doors to artistic and vocal freedom and celebrates her cultural identity while acknowledging her painfully complex birth story. Ferera is a beacon of hope and healing for other adult adoptees processing an often misunderstood legacy of grief. It’s a broadly resonant journey, and it will inspire anyone who has ever fought to take back their lives and embrace their authentic selves.
Her epiphany has happened many years into her music career. Ferera is an established artist, singer-songwriter, engineer, producer, multi-instrumentalist, and composer. One way to think of this new music era is as if Ferera Swan is a new artist 15 years in the making. To date, she has written, arranged, and engineered music for other artists in varying genres, and she has worked as a session musician in a variety of contexts.
Select career highlights include composing, “Lighthouse,” for the film documentary Swim For The Reef that was premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in France, and recording vocals for various commercial jingles, including a national advertisement for Old Navy. Ferera has also been a featured guest performing live on radio and on television in the Austin, Texas region. To date, Ferera has released two albums under previous artist names, and two recent Ferera Swan singles, including “Second Time” (2019) written for her biological mother and produced by Ramy Antoun (former drummer for Seal & founder of A&F Drum Co.).
Ferera wrote her first song at age 10, after learning that she was adopted—she poured her unanswered questions into music. At that tender age, she had already been playing piano for 7 years, and violin for 4 years. She was a young virtuoso, and, by age 14, she composed her first cinematic score titled, “Serenity.” “Serenity” was premiered by four orchestras with a turnout of over 2,000 people. Yet, despite the acclaim and her undeniable musical mastery, Ferera never felt worthy enough to embrace her gifts as a virtuosic musician. Instead, she retreated into songwriting and singing, though her inherent talents would later serve her in writing, composing, orchestrating, arranging, engineering, and producing for herself and others.
The years of 2013 - 2021 are something of a time gap in Ferera’s artistic continuum. Though she did release a pair of singles in 2019, these years represent a defining time in her personal and professional life. During this period, Ferera became active on Facebook and Instagram, sharing her adoption story with poignant memes, using hashtags like #adopteevoices. It was a deeply healing era for Ferera as a community rallied alongside her, emboldened by publicly acknowledging their pain together. “I was discovering my voice—it was so liberating—and that newfound freedom began to seep into my music. I felt alive and energized,” she says.
Those feelings of freedom and energy course through Ferera’s new music. One of three songs co-produced with Jacob Hildebrand to be released in 2022, “To Say Goodbye” delicately unfolds with sparkly ambience, chiming guitars, and sublime melodies. Here, she addresses the reality for many adoptees: no matter how fulfilling their home lives may be, there is a constant sense of loss and being unwanted by the one who brought you into the world. Adoptee grief is largely misunderstood by those outside of this life experience. “We grieve our mothers, families, our roots. I believe it’s in allowing ourselves to hold grief and gratitude simultaneously—the integration of both—where we can truly discover healing,” Ferera shares. On this song, her lyrics come from a place of strength and self-awareness hard fought from years of pain and confusion. In the outro, she sings: I don’t need someone to save me/to show me how to see the bright side/Tell me how to say goodbye to/the one you’ll always hope will love you.
The delicate and sparse piano ballad, “How To Love,” showcases Ferera’s sensual but heartfelt singing. On this song, she grapples with a push-pull dynamic many survivors of abuse and/or abandonment experience, and Ferera hits the sentiment spot on. “Navigating trauma isn’t a linear process. There are very complex, sometimes contradictory emotions, and two different things can be true at once ,” she says. Her words here reveal brave truths, she sings: Don’t reach too far/if you want them/It’s hard to receive anyway/Is there a home I can find/a solitude getaway. Ferera ventures out into an elegant EDM setting with “Firewall,” exploring her soulful vocals in a mid-tempo sleekly atmospheric beat-driven setting. This song is a co-write with producer Stephen Miller and Pam Sheyne, who is best known for co-writing Christina Aguilera’s global smash debut single, "Genie in a Bottle.”
There is a saying that pain is the price of admission to a new life. This applies to Ferera in that she has channeled her trauma into a creative and personal rebirth. “Some of our greatest gifts can be found in our deepest pain. Through allowing myself to explore what hurts, I’ve found purpose, self-compassion, and the meaning of courage”, she says.